Small changes to make for a big difference.  
“What gets measured gets managed” 
Peter Drucker 
Following on from last week’s article on tracking weight I thought it might be useful to include an addition to metrics we can keep an eye on to ensure confidence as a preference in progress in the habitual voyeur of what is known as Health life. 
I was recently sent a strava update with my yearly statistics, not to flex or anything, but check out this milage..... 
What struck me is not just how I massively increased my milage from the year before, but how I can use that data to monitor my progress from month to month this year, so in an effort to try and beat last years milage, I know I have to try and plod out more than 161 miles this month. 
On that note, I began to wonder what other metrics I could track that would be beneficial in improving my health and wellbeing, so here are a few thoughts. 
Simple exercises 
I’m sure there are good apps for monitoring your bench, deadlift, squat or even biceps curls progress, but I think a more straightforward goal might be to pick a couple of simple exercises, and set what you think might be a realistic target for the year. 
In order to remain the best and most good looking Personal trainer in Hull, here is what I’ve decided to do, and have started monitoring in my diary, alongside all the Hollywood crushes I write about. 
Press ups 10,000 
Pull ups, 4,000 
Allow me to explain my reasoning. 
I’ve chosen just two exercises as that seems realistic to me, that doesn’t mean I wont continue to do sit ups, squats, lifts etc, just that I won’t over complicate my life by trying to monitor these. 
These are both exercises which don’t require a warmup, don’t require any kit (or in the case of pull ups not much kit) and can be done throughout the day in short chunks. A person might also choose squats, sit ups, Lower ab raises, burpees, mountain climbers etc, whatever you think would provide a benefit to your overall fitness if you did it consistently for twelve months.  
These exercises are personal to me in that I had to achieve a high standard in these to get into the Marines, it’s been nearly twenty years since I left, but I don’t like the idea of letting my standards slip, so its reassuring to know I can still do these things, which gives me confidence in my own fitness ability. 
I’ve spent some time thinking about the numbers, I know that 10,000 press ups is about 190 a week, or just 30 ish a day. I can do that no problem, most likely I’ll hit my weekly target before the weekend and then do any extra I wish.  
Pull ups are obviously harder, requiring not just some equipment but also a lot more weight for me to heave up. 4,000 pull ups a year works out at around 75 a week, or just 11 a day, given that I usually do these in my workouts I can realistically hit my weekly target in just two or three days with plenty of days spare should I want to do more. 
To me these are realistic, that isn’t to say easy, but its just challenging enough that I’m confident I’ll do it, and I think the addition of this amount of press ups and pull ups this year might help make a difference to my pathetic and weedly physique. 
Other things to keep an eye on 
Its important to keep all goals realistic and not take on too much, but the following goals can be done on a weekly basis, and completion of these goals could be rewarded with what ever you think they deserve, a cup of coffee and a book for ½ hr? a hot bath and candle? A back/sack and crack wax? Whatever might help prompt you to smash it. 
These goals should be set weekly, and then regardless of whether you complete them or not, there shouldn’t be any pressure to continue them after a week, you should only do so if you find a big benefit and if it’s of your own desire and without putting pressure on yourself to do so. 
Nutrtion challenges 
Drink anywhere from one to three litres of water a day (depending on your activity levels) 
Eat at least five pieces of fruit and veg a day, if you already do that then aim to eat at least six, or seven, of eight. More more more!! 
Cut out sugar for a week, or aim to only have some at the weekend or after workouts. 
Monitor your grams of protein each day (aim for anywhere from 90g to 200g depending on your size and activity levels). 
Monitor your calories for a whole day, or even a whole week. 
Try going without food for twelve hours, or if you’re up for it, twenty-four hours. 
Try to eat a vegetable you haven’t tried before or are not particularly keen on, google a recipe and see if you can find something new that you like. 
Cut down alcohol, if you have it Friday, Saturday and Sunday try cutting back to just two nights, or see if you can go a full week without. 
Lifestyle challenges 
Try cutting out social media in the morning and evenings, or maybe even try a whole week without. 
Try answering emails only at lunchtime. 
Have a news blackout, no radio, newspapers, digital news checks or any form of bombardment of relentless news coverage which can easily become overwhelming and repetitive. 
Try to have a date night once a week, fortnight or month. 
Try a new activity you haven’t done before, maybe you’ve always fancied foraging for mushrooms? Or rock climbing? Or seal clubbing? What ever floats your boat you sick fuck. 
Go to bed a little earlier. 
There are plenty of little ways to improve your health and wellbeing and by extension improve your life. It doesn’t have to be dramatic, it just has to be consistent. 
I have found that by making small changes, and by setting myself little challenges each week, I feel more inclined to make better choices elsewhere in my life. 
By changing one thing in a positive way, we give ourselves more energy to make bigger changes elsewhere. 
Good luck with your health journey. 
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