I started going to the gym again at the start of July, after a lapse of over two years. One thing I decided to do differently from the outset was to use the web to record my progress in some way. After checking a few similar sites out, I signed up with Gyminee. There seems to be three main aspects to this site:
- Record your weight
- Record your diet
- Record your workouts
I don’t need to lose or gain any weight, so only the third option is really of any interest to me. It seems to have a wide range of exercises available to choose from, with some video clips showing how most of them are done. If it doesn’t have a particular exercise, I think you can add your own.
Then after about a month of going to the gym, I read articles on Lifehacker and also the New York Times about doing push ups. From there I ended up checking out the one hundred push ups programme. That site just tells you how many to do, it doesn’t have any way of registering to track your progress. I could just have used the Gyminee site, but instead I registered at GiveMe27, a site which does one thing and does it well – lets you record the number of push ups you do each day.
I’m not convinced the one hundred push ups programme has helped me massively. I started out being able to do 100 push ups in one set, and I haven’t really progressed beyond that. Some days I do much more than 100, just in multiple sets of smaller repetitions. so in that respect I’m doing a lot more push ups than I would have otherwise. As I could already do 100, I set myself a goal of either doing 150 or 200 by the end of the programme. I also decided to do it every day, instead of every second day. Possibly not giving myself rest days wasn’t a good idea. I’ve effectively finished the 100 push ups programme, but haven’t yet achieved 150 in a set. So I’m going to just do my own thing on the push ups for a while; instead of lots of sets of 15 – 25 repetitions, I’m going to do just a few sets, maxing out the repetitions each time.
And finally, I setup goals on Joe’s Goals for going to the gym and doing push ups. This is a nice Coldfusion-powered site for recording goals, both positive and negative. For instance if you were trying to lose weight, you could have a positive goal of going to the gym, and a negative goal of eating chocolate. The idea being you’d have lots of ticks for your positive goals and not so many crosses for your negatives. If you’ve read the Lifehacker article Jerry Seinfeld’s Productivity Secret, then Joe’s Goals is a perfect web app for following Seinfeld’s advice:
"After a few days you’ll have a chain. Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. You’ll like seeing that chain, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt. Your only job next is to not break the chain."