This Is How I Bullet Journal My Fitness and Nutrition Goals Every Day to Stay on Track
You have probably heard of a hundred different ways to track your fitness goals and progress electronically — OK, maybe not a hundred, but you know there are a lot of fitness apps, tracking bracelets, and even rings that record your steps, weight, and sleep. I've tried a bunch of different tools myself, but sometimes you're just a pen-and-paper person, and a good bullet journal is what you need to stay consistent.
Bullet journaling has been a great asset to my fitness and nutrition goals. Not only does it allow me to be creative and offers a fun activity at the beginning and end of every day, it also gives me a wide visual representation of how I'm doing overall, in life, on my way to my target. It doesn't just include number metrics like weight or how many workouts I did in a week. It includes whatever else I want to focus on in my journey to better health, whether that's more self-awareness, more time meditating, or calories or water consumption.
A bullet journal can be overwhelming to start and requires some preparation, but I promise that after you draw out a plan (quite literally), you'll be happy you did it. This is how to get started.
Gather Your Supplies
While bullet journaling fanatics keep a bigger stock of supplies, here's a list of the basics you'll need to get started:
- A blank notebook — notebooks or journals that are free of lines and other content are the best option for bullet journaling. It's your clean slate.
- Colored pens — using different colors allows you to categorize and track your goals more effectively.
- A ruler — to draw lines and separate sections.
- A pencil — to lay out your basic information so you can erase any mistakes.
- Decorative tape — that can be used to separate your lists or tasks and get creative. Washi tape is popular for bullet journaling, and it's inexpensive.
- Stickers — to help you easily mark up your journal and make it fun.
Choose a Goal
Create smaller milestones for your goal to keep positive — things like "I want to work out five days this week," if your goal is to lose weight by the end of the year; or "I want to drink 80 ounces of water every day for 10 days," if your goal is to eat healthier.
Get Creative Mapping It Out
An effective way to track your progression is to create a visual representation that shows where you started, your detailed progress each week, and how far you are from your overall goal.
There are two major benefits to mapping out your fitness goals in your bullet journal. First, once you write down what you want from this journey, your goals seem more real — putting it to paper is a way to hold yourself accountable. Second, you'll feel pride as you see how far you've come and feel encouraged to keep going as you regularly check into your journal to track your progress. You can even add some positive reminders throughout the pages!
Make a Comprehensive Weekly Schedule
Your fitness bullet journal should also incorporate your usual weekly schedule, including work, family, and social commitments. Your journal should be a full picture of your life, and that includes personal milestones or challenges that have nothing to do with fitness or health — but might still play a role in your routine. If you see you have a party coming up and know you'll want to indulge or skip a workout to make it, you can better plan accordingly.
As you check into your weekly schedule every day, you'll have a visual that shows where you need to step up your game. Maybe you're not eating enough vegetables, or maybe you skipped your Monday workout. Regardless of where you didn't meet your goals, there is always room to grow.
Create a block schedule that gives you space to jot down your work appointments. Add your menu plan for the week so you stay on track with your nutrition. Incorporate water drops that you can shade for each day as you get closer to your hydration goals. Identify additional parts of your fitness journey that may be important, like personal development, self-care, and rest and create a chart you can check off to track them every day.
Create a Graph
Graphs make spotting trends easier. If you don't move as much on the weekend, for example, seeing a dip in your graph as you track your steps will make this evident and push you to break that habit.
You can choose pie charts, progress bars, or line graphs to track your progress day by day.
Include Important Reminders
Sometimes, we forget to complete the most obvious tasks necessary to better our health. If you frequently skip on things like self-care, sleep, or relaxation, jot down reminders throughout your journal. There are even printable pages you can paste into your journal.
Reference lists through your notebook can include categories like:
- Healthy Snacks
- Quick Workouts
- Self-Care Ideas
- Books to Read
- Low-Carb Side Dishes
Having these lists all in one place make it easy to reference them frequently and even while you're on the go.
Come Up With a Plan You Can Go Back to Often
No matter what your goal is, you should create a plan of how you're going to accomplish it. Think about it as your permanent to-do list — a list to check every week or month to make sure you're following the plan.
If it helps to switch it up, then create a weekly goal schedule at the beginning of every week and write little notes next to each activity so you can remember next week if the previous routine worked or not.
Find a Place to Keep Your Journal in Constant View
Keep your journal in clear view as an an effective reminder to check in every day. When my journal ended up in a pile under other papers on our kitchen table, I quickly fell out of my well-established routine.
Set aside some time each day to review your goals and set your intentions, making it part of your new healthy routine to keep up with your bullet journal. Grab your morning coffee and sit down for a few minutes each morning, and identify traceable daily habits that will help you meet your goals.