31 Easy Tips to Sporting Excellence: #5 Track Your Progress Towards Your Goals

31 Easy Tips to Sporting Excellence is a collection of tips that you may not have thought of but can help drive you towards your goals this year. While (like anything worth pursuing) they require a certain amount of effort to implement, they are straightforward and simple to put into practice.

Previous tips in the series include:

#1: Drink Water First Thing in the Morning
#2: Write Down Your Goals (Now!)
#3: Ask an Expert
#4: Start Stretching

Tip #5 in the series is Track your progress towards your Goals. It’s as easy as buying a pen and a diary.

track your progress to highlight the incremental gains over a longer period of time

I like this guy’s shirt

As you train towards your goals (no matter what your goals are), how do you know you are progressing? When times are tough and motivation is low how do you push through without knowing that you are getting closer every day you train?

Tracking your performances in training and races as you move towards your goals will help keep your eye on the prize through a long season.

Use a training diary (hat tip to Ryan Kelly for this MS Excel cycling logbook) to track your progress from month to month or year to year. If you give yourself the option of looking back on your performance over the course of different seasons you will likely surprise yourself at how much you have improved.

Enjoy your small gains* – they are not always obvious but stop and register them and congratulate yourself. Treat yourself along the way – this journey is supposed to be fun. The pressure is on to be always moving forward, but make the deal with yourself that you will enjoy the progress.

With pressure should come pleasure.

* The article above comes from Brackin Elite Swim Training and also features some good swim tips and tools to consider.


  1. zliten

    I personally use TrainingPeaks.com they have the best tracking software I have found so far. It had a learning curve, and it has a charge if you want to plan events in the future. But if your OK just putting in what you did today and before. It works wonders.
    Since I started using it back in November 2011, I can have it search for and create reports for lots of tracked stats. It has been very helpful to see how my weeks trend over the last year +.
    I am sure someone could do the same with a pen and a notebook, but then they would have to make the pretty charts by hand.

    I also have been using SparkPeople.com to track my food consumption for the past 5 years, and have my weight data and size metrics all on there. Its impressive to see a few hundred data points on weight over that many years. I found that it was most useful to take that data and put in my stress levels, from different jobs or projects to see how my weight fluctuates because I get “lazy” and eat junk food or stop my workouts due to long hours at work.

    The more metrics you track the more likely you are of success!

    • Coach Eamon

      Thanks for the tips and the info on the tools.

      “The more metrics you track the more likely you are of success!” – fully agree, and it is rewarding to see your progress in black and white. A virtuous circle!

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