How to Track Progress

Check Body Fat

Check Body Fat

Before you begin your fitness journey, you should take a few pictures and measure several parts of your body. Do this on day zero, the day before you actually start working out or on day one before your first physical activity.

Start your program and try to avoid taking measurements or even weighing yourself during the next 30 days. Most people will jump into a program and then weigh themselves every day to see how much weight they have lost. This is the wrong approach and could hinder your ability and willingness to stick with the program.

How to take pictures for your fitness program.

There are several pictures that you should take to track your progress while on a physical fitness program. Start by finding a place that has good lighting and a solid colored background. You will want to use the same place to take pictures each month.
Your poses should consist of:

  • front – stand facing the camera with arms by your sides
  • front, hands on hips – stand facing the camera with hands on hips
  • front, biceps flex – stand facing the camera with arms up and biceps flexed
  • 45 degree twist right – stand facing the camera and twist your torso to the right so that your shoulders are at a 45 degree angle to the camera. Hands on hips
  • side – turn to your right side with arms by your sides (another great way to track your progress from a side view is by taking a picture while pushing your gut as far out as you can. The next shot you will suck your gut in as far as you can. You will notice results even more when you add these poses)
  • back – stand facing away from the camera with arms by your sides
  • back, hands on hips – stand facing away from the camera with hands on hips
  • back, biceps flexed – stand facing away from the camera with arms up and biceps flexed
  • side – turn to your left side with arms by your sides
  • 45 degree twist left- stand facing the camera and twist your torso to the left so that your shoulders are at a 45 degree angle to the camera. Hands on hips
  • (Additionally I would recommend taking a few pictures while flexing your biceps, chest, abs etc.)

So now that you are finished taking pictures, you should grab that tape measure and body fat calipers and write down your measurements.

How and where to take measurements:

  • Bust – Measure around the chest right at the nipple line, but don’t pull the tape too tight.
  • Chest – Measure just under your bust where your pectoral muscle meets your ribs.
  • Belly – Measure a half-inch above your belly button. Try to keep tape staight and do not pull to tight.
  • Waist – Measure the smallest part of your waist, usually where your belt goes.
  • Hips – Place tape measure around the largest part of your hips
  • Thighs – Measure around the largest part of each thigh
  • Calves – Measure around the largest part of each calf
  • Biceps – Measure around the largest part of each arm above the elbow
  • Forearm – Measure around the largest part of the arm below the elbow
  • Neck – If you are trying to gain muscle mass, most body builders track their neck size.

Create your own progress chart to record your measurements. Take them again once every 30 days to track your results

Keep in mind that realistic goals are essential for your success. And don’t forget, it takes time to lose weight so don’t panic if you don’t drop 10 pounds in a week. Most people may not see significant results for weeks or even months. If you’re losing weight the right way, your progress will be nice and steady.

You may have noticed that many of my workouts are timed. The reason that I do this is to track my endurance, stamina and strength. Sometimes the stopwatch is the best way to track your fitness results. Be sure to check out all of the Timed Workouts.

Heart Rate Monitor and StopwatchDon’t forget about tracking your heart rate.  Whether you want to be in the fat burning zone or in the cardio zone, be sure to get the proper tools necessary to keep seeing results day in and day out.

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Disclaimer: Opinions expressed on this website may not be in agreement with those of GarageBodyTV.com or Rob Vander Ark. The above parties are not responsible in any manner whatsoever for any injury or health condition that may occur through following the fitness and exercise programs expressed here. Consult with your physician before starting any exercise program.