Our goal in this article is to inspire content for your health and fitness journal. We provide a simple collection of ideas to kick-start your brain and start recording useful material that you can use to transform your body.
The Journaling Basics
The list below is the core starting prompt you can use on a daily basis to help inspire your journaling;
- What have you done today / yesterday?
- What have you eaten or drank today?
- How are you feeling?
- What do you need to do next?
- What do you want to change?
- If only…
And here are some questions to ask yourself at the end of each week or month:
- What did you do?
- What went well?
- What did you learn?
- What are your goals for next week?
Now that we’ve covered off the basic questions to ask yourself, we’ve included the lists below to help develop your journal further and build some valuable diversity into what you’re recording.
Let’s start with some positivity and explore just what makes you tick. Understanding what makes you happy can allow you to improve your mood and develop a health and fitness routine that incorporates the things that you enjoy doing (meaning you're more likely to stick with it and succeed).
Here are some happiness oriented questions to ask yourself and record the results in your journal;
- What does ‘happiness’ mean to you?
- Would you describe yourself as naturally happy or worried and unsettled?
- Describe a time when you were really happy and explore the reasons behind it.
- Think about the people, things or places that really make you happy and list them.
- What makes you lose track of time?
- Who or what always improves your mood?
- What do you think stands inbetween you and your happiness?
- Write a journal entry about your favorite healthy foods
- Schedule in some rest and relaxation time and get a massage, weekend away, or take a bath with a good book and write-up in your journal
- Think of 5 different ways you could treat yourself and do one of them this week
Create a Positive Mindset
Developing a positive sense of self and exploring your good attributes helps to build confidence, sustain motivation and avoid setting unrealistic expectations.
To help develop a positive mental attitude consider the following in your journal;
- I am awesome because…
- My best features are…
- List all of your positive achievements, successes, talents, skills, quirks, qualifications, memorable experiences and proudest moments
- What do people say that you’re good at?
- List some of the compliments you can remember receiving, big and small
- What expectations and demands do you place on yourself relating to your health and fitness? Assess whether they are fair and realistic and explore what you’d need to do to achieve them
- What do you think people’s first impressions of you are? What would you like them to be?
- Write about something you know you can do better than most people
- Working from head to toe, rate the different areas of your body. Which areas do you like and which could do with some work? Add some photos to your journal. Amend your goals with some actions to work on those areas
- What advice or pep talk would you like to give yourself?
Explore Your Goals
In the prompts below, we’re encouraging you to explore the future. Generally, people are pretty bad at planning for the future so your journal can be a great place to think about what you want to achieve and capture those goals.
- Make a list of your headline goals
- Now, instead of seeing these overarching goals as overwhelming and daunting, break them down into smaller goals, and now into a 30 day action plan (our fitness planning article should help you)
- What is your number one goal or intention for the next six months?
- Add a journal entry about it as if you’ve already achieved it, for example, "I have just conquered the muscle-up exercise..."
- What skills or exercises do you want to learn and why?
- Write a letter to yourself 10 years in the future
- My ideal body would be...
- Make a list of all the things you want to do, try and experience or an adventure you’d love to have
- What would you do if you knew you could not fail?
- Resolutions aren’t just for January. Create a list of resolutions to embrace today and post into your journal. I promise to [your resolution]. I want to do this because achieving it would mean [resolution benefit]. My reward for fulfilling this resolution will be [your incentive].
- What health and fitness activities do you need to make more time for?
- Write about the next big step you’re going to take towards your dreams
- Consider the areas below and rate yourself from 1-10 in those areas of your life.
- Where are the biggest areas for improvement, report to your journal about how you can improve them
- General health and wellbeing
- Strength levels
- Body fat percentage
- Cardiovascular health
- Learning / knowledge
- Brainstorm three ways you can be healthier in your day job (see our article on office fitness for inspiration)
- Take a look in the mirror. What do you want to change?
Express Your Gratitude
Capturing gratitudes involves recording the things and people in your life that you’re most thankful for. It’s a hugely beneficial and positive habit to build into your routine.
See our article on keeping a gratitude journal for more information and start thinking about the questions below to start the process;
- Write a letter in your journal (that you don’t have to send), thanking someone who helped you in some way or gave you great advice
- Tell them how you used it to your benefit
- I am grateful for my body because…
- Who has been a great role model for you, and why?
- How have they influenced you?
- What things are you taking for granted?
- I am grateful for my healthy heart because...
Let Go of Negativity
Harbouring negative emotions is a hindrance that you don’t need in your life. The prompts below are designed to help release you from your negative emotions, enable you to learn from your mistakes and help you develop a more positive attitude.
- Think about regrets, negative self-beliefs, grudges or past events and write about them
- Really explore how letting these experiences go would make you feel
- What can you learn from these experiences?
- List at least one positive thing from each of these negative experiences in your life
- What solutions can you think of to these problems
- Write a letter you never send to someone you have unresolved issues with, explain how you’re feeling and why, and try to finish it with “i forgive you”
- Write about your most frequent reasons for procrastination or common excuses for not eating or training right
Keep on Learning
Continuous learning is a huge part of personal growth and will help you meet your goals as you become informed and can tailor your actions and behaviors appropriately.
- Recall some of the best advice you’ve ever received
- Take 10 minutes and read an article on something new that you’ve wanted to explore for some time now (for example, intermittent fasting, HIIT, CrossFit, Paleo etc)
- Write about what you’ve just learned
- Browse through some success stories online from people who’ve transformed their body in some way. What can you learn from their journey?
- Make a list of your top 5 health and fitness books and share it publicly
- Make a list of some health and fitness books on your ‘to-read’ list
- Write a review of a recent book you read, or leave a comment on an article
- I wish I knew… because…
- Pick a fruit or vegetable that you’ve never eaten before. Buy it, cook it, and write about it.
- What does ‘having purpose’ mean to you?
- What motivates you?
- What does ‘having momentum’ mean to you?
- Assess your health with a check-up, or get some blood work done to record your bio markers. Report findings to your journal
- Book a professional personal training session with a qualified practitioner and write about what you learn, their recommendations, and appraisal of your current lifestyle
Learn from the Past
As well as looking to the future and mapping out what you’d like to achieve it’s very beneficial to look back on the past and reflect on how far you’ve come. You’d be surprised what a little time exploring this can uncover about yourself.
- Recall a P.E. lesson from back in school
- Write a letter to your 13 year old self. What advice would you give them?
- Write about a time that was your greatest physical achievement. This can be a victory, memorable game, personal best or anything that really stands out for you and that you’re most proud of
- What were your favorite childhood games and who did you play with?
- When do you feel most alive?
- Write about a time when you took a big leap of faith or change of direction in your life and what motivated it
- Write about something you can do now that you were not able to do this time last year
- Write about a time when you really impressed yourself
- Is there any exercise or skill you wish you spent more time learning 5 years ago?
- If you had your life to do over again, what would you change about your lifestyle?
- Take 10 minutes and flick through your journal, reading over old entries and looking at old photos. How far have you come? Report to journal.
- Where were you this time last year / 5 years ago / 10 years ago
- Write about a fitness fad that you indulged in and why it didn’t work
- Create a vision board and spend ten minutes adding photos to your journal of physiques you aspire towards
- What inspires me is… because...
- Write a day in the life of someone you know who’s in good shape, what do you think they get up to?
- Find a challenge that you want to accomplish (skydiving, mountain climbing, marathons, mud-runs etc), book it in and write a training plan leading up to the event. Even better, select a charity and start raising sponsorship too. Journal your progress leading up to the big day.
- Describe your perfect gym (here’s an old blog post we wrote about our ideal gym)
- Imagine you have $500 to build a gym. What’s on your equipment list?
- The gym is burning down. You can save one last piece of fitness equipment. What do you choose?
- You have one last meal and it has to be healthy. What meal would you cook?
- Flick through a healthy recipe book and randomly pick a meal to cook
- Take a ten minute break and build a new workout playlist
Random Journaling Tasks
To finish up, here are some random tasks to set yourself and record the results in your journal;
- Take a photo of yourself in the gym
- Measure your body (for example, record body weight, chest size, or sprint for 100 metres and record your time)
- Test your one rep max deadlift, squat, benchpress
- For at least one day this week record how you spend your full 24 hours. In your journal write an entry for each hour, recording what you are doing or what you’ve done. Later, reflect on how you spent your time.
- Collate some quotes that resonate with you and add to your journal
- Collect pictures of celebrities or randomer people who have a similar body type to you that you could achieve
We hope these ideas will inspire your journaling process and help you to define your goals, discover what works for you and build a stronger, healthier body.
Fitstream provides the perfect online journaling platform and it’s completely free. We’d love you to choose our service to help transform your body.