John Du Cane of Dragon Door Publishing fame once said “Don’t ever trust your success to your memory.”
This is the very reason why it’s so darn important to keep a workout log.
When I ask folks why they don’t keep a log they often tell me that they remember what they did in their last workout. Trusting your fitness to your memory is a very bad idea. At best it will slow down your progress to a crawl.
There are two reasons why you don’t want to rely on your memory and start keeping a log. The first being that progress is often made in tiny little steps at a time. Forget the idea of being 1% better each day. If you could become 1% stronger every day you would double your strength every few months or so. That’s insane! Your more realistic rate of progress is much smaller than 1% each day.
The only way you’ll ever know if you can gain, and maintain, that small an amount of progress is if you keep track of it. Without some way to record your small progressions they can literally be gone in a matter of minutes.
The second reason is because those little progressions are hard to remember. When we try to recall our previous workout chances are we only recall the big chunks we have been repeating over and over for a long time.
A workout log is like a progression GPS. Sure, you don’t need a GPS if you’re traveling the same route that you’ve traveled a million times. The down side is that traveling the same old roads won’t bring you to any new destinations. If you want to travel anywhere new, you need guidance. Your memory will only tell you what you’ve done, but a good training log will tell you what to do next.