Why I Don’t Record My Workout Scores

Posted by Squad Leader on

Why I Don’t Record My Workout Scores
I’ve been WODding since the latter part of 2011. For the past 5 years I have almost NEVER recorded any of my scores for WODs, weightlifting maxes or really anything else. Occasionally someone else records my scores FOR me (such as in competitions, The Open, or benchmark WODs at my box) and those are the only times my scores are written down. It’s part of my personal policy NOT to record numbers. Lots of people have asked me why. So here’s my explanation:

I have Long-term goals.

I’m a “big-picture” thinker. Of course I strive to constantly improve myself, my fitness, my life. But fitness is something that should be lifelong, in my opinion. The whole point of being physically fit, for me, is for health and longevity. I’m in my 30’s and in order to have realistic expectations of myself, I will not expect to be more agile, lift heavier, run faster in 30 more years. I do, however expect that I will still be physically fit. That’s why I make exercise a priority and a routine just the same as I do with brushing my teeth every morning. It’s important for me not to judge myself on my short-term performance numbers, rather to feel empowered and accomplished for continuing to stay fit over many years of my life.

Numbers can be discouraging

If I do worse on something than I did before or don’t meet my own expectations for myself, I tend to mentally beat myself up. I’m really, really hard on myself, not just about fitness, but about a lot of things. I’m not necessarily the competitive type with anyone EXCEPT MYSELF. But if I look at numbers too closely, I’m liable to break my spirit and get discouraged. I once ran a half-marathon in an hour and 50 minutes. It’s been over 10 years and I haven’t run another in fear that I won’t beat my previous time.

I might be having an “off-day”

When I started doing WODs at a box I loved it and instantly wanted to be good at it. As soon as I started getting the hang of things, I got pregnant and my gym went out of business. It was at least 6 months before I recovered from my C-section and found another box to work out in. And I had to start from scratch again. I was heavier, sleep deprived and shell-shocked from becoming a mother. It was hard. And the minute I started excelling at things like pull-ups and pistols and lifting heavier weight, I got pregnant AGAIN.

During that time, in between pregnancies, and postpartum, I had good days and bad days, like everyone does. I had bad days at work, sleepless nights, days where I was so sore I couldn’t move, days I was hung-over (don’t judge!), days when I had a cold, was recovering from an injury or the stomach flu. And I still worked out and it wasn’t always pretty. But it was still worth it, just not worth writing down in detail. And if I’m not going to record my bad days, I don’t feel right recording my good days either.

If it’s important to me, I remember it anyway

The other day I did a 10 rep max back squat with the same weight as my 1 rep max from 6 months ago. And that one-rep max 6 months ago was the heaviest I had been able to lift since giving birth to two children. I was really proud of myself, which is why I remember it. I make lots of mental notes about my accomplishments. And I only remember the ones that matter to me and forget the rest.

To be clear, I’m not advocating the practice of never recording any of your fitness metrics and I’m certainly not knocking those who do. Recording numbers has many benefits for many people. I’m just explaining why I don’t do it. I believe that it’s completely acceptable, and for some, desirable to cross train or do any other fitness routine “off the radar and off the record”, not to compete against anyone (even yourself), and just be proud of yourself that you work out at all. Because working out regularly and staying fit is an accomplishment all on it’s own.

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