Keep Yourself Accountable

A little bit about me: I love video games, board games, binge-watching shows such as Doctor Who or Teen Titans Go! (super mature, I know), vodka made in the great state of Texas, Taco Bell and watching my Spurs. I’d much rather swing by a drive-thru on the way home than cook (because who really enjoys being in the kitchen and working? No one. Stop lying and saying you like it), would rather play video games than practically anything else (don’t believe me? Ask my fiance) and if something isn’t in front of me, I’m apt to forget it. That being said, I’m a meticulous planner and extremely well-organized. When you’re the perfect blend of lazy and forgetful (what can I say? I’m a total catch 😉 ) but you’re endeavored to stay on the Road to Gainzville, you’ve got to come up with a method to hold yourself accountable.

Every individual responds to different stimuli, however I’m vehemently against the practice of self-loathing, beating yourself up, penalizing or punishing yourself. The only thing you’ve got with you from the day you enter this world until the day you leave it is your birthday suit which houses the ol’ noggin, and I see no benefits or rewards derived from doing anything which adversely impacts your body or emotional/mental state. As I mentioned previously, although I love planning and am fairly well organized, if something isn’t right in front of me I’m liable to forget it. Needless to say, I’m a fairly visual person. Because of this, I use primarily two tools for holding myself accountable: a wall calendar and my phone.

I use my phone to track how many miles I run (I’m a fan of RunKeeper and have been using it for years) and I use MyFitnessPal to track my calories because it has a robust library. Because I’m a bit of a “numbers” guy, I enjoy tracking calories. I’d surmise this isn’t a notion everyone subscribes to, and if you don’t like it, don’t do it. It’d just be a useless expenditure of your time. The only thing I love more than Taco Bell and vodka made in Texas? Cash money-tracking my calories helps me ensure I don’t spend too much $$$ eating out.

I use a large desktop calendar hung just by my bedside to track the following:

  1. How much we spent on groceries in a given week (tallied next to Friday)
  2. How much I spent eating out-doesn’t matter if it’s a full meal or just buying coffee. (tallied daily in red)
  3. How many miles I completed each day/my daily workout

I write mileage in black ink on each day I run and the total at the end of the week in black ink as well. Anything in red is money we spent on eating out, and it all comes out of our monthly “going out” allocation.  We budget (approx $120-$200 a month) for going out. Movies, dinner, mini-golf-it’s a nice little luxury we enjoy doing. However, that’s spread out across all 4 weeks of the month. We write down everything we spend on going out/groceries on this big calendar so it’s at the center of my mind at all times. The last thing I want to do is spend $400 a month in groceries and not eat everything we’ve bought-then I’m throwing both food and money down the drain, and I’m not a fan of wasting anything.

So to keep myself in check, I write down every single time I spend money on food. This helps limit (for me) our going out to once a week and in turn helps me limit the amount of times in a single month I gorge myself on fast food. I may not be watching my calories like a hawk even if I’m counting them, but you can bet I feel it when the funds are low.

Maybe you’re not a strict calorie counter and maybe you’re not as visual a person as I am. The idea is to hold yourself accountable using whatever method works best for you. No one else can claim your successes when it comes to your fitness/strength goals just like no one else is to blame when you start slacking. If you want to reach your full potential you’ve got to stay on the Road to Gainzville. Straying off path every now and again certainly won’t derail your fitness journey so there’s no point in beating yourself up if you do. Find something that works and stick to it. If you get bored, mix it up! How do you track your daily gainz sessions? How do you keep yourself accountable? Let me know in the comments!

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