Last year Dee got me a new heart rate monitor that came with a watch that would allow me to track my workouts. I put it to use and tracked my workouts for the year to see if I could discover anything interesting in the data. Here’s what I found.
Workout data means nothing if it doesn’t help you to see how you are achieving your goals. This means that you need to have goals. I did have goals and they were as follows:
Maintain an average weight of 180 pounds while reducing my body fat percentage to 11%.
That’s great, but what does it mean for my workout plan? It means that I needed to to a combination of strength and cardio training. The strength training would allow me to add muscle (and burn fat) to increase my weight while the cardio would help me burn fat to decrease my body fat percentage. Early in the year, I focused more on shedding fat so I did more cardio. As the year progressed, I shifted my plan to include more strength and less cardio once I saw how I was tracking to my goals. This wasn’t a linear progression. I would tweak my workouts as necessary if I saw movement away from my goals. Plus, changing up the routine is always a good thing.
Weight and Body Composition
When I started tracking my workouts in January of 2011, I weighed 183 pounds and my body fat was 15.2%. This was the heaviest I had ever been in my life. Some of it was from added muscle from my 2010 workouts but a good deal of it was from not working out much in December (my gym was closed for the month for renovations) and eating way too much. When the gym reopened in January, I rededicated myself to my workouts and to healthier meals.
By the end of March I weighed 182 pounds and my body fat dropped to 13.9%. I felt like I was on track to hit my 11% goal by the end of the year. However, I wandered a bit due to various distractions (mostly the baby) and a busy work schedule. Unfortunately, I didn’t check my body fat again until December 6th when I checked in at 12.9%. My final weigh in of 2011 put me at 178.5. I was happy with my results but fell short of my body fat goal. I hope to reach and maintain 11% body fat this year.
My lowest weight for 2011 was 177 pounds which I reached three times (6/7, 7/25, 11/28). My highest weight for the year was 184.5 which I reached once on 10/10. That’s a range of 7.5 pounds for the year. I’d like to keep my weight more steady in 2012 by reducing that range to 6 pounds.
My average weight for the year was 180.63. Nailed it.
If you like details, check out the numbers below.
Total Number of tracked workouts: 178
178 workouts (I workout once per day) means I worked out on 49% of the days of 2011. This isn’t entirely accurate. There were days I forgot my monitor and there were many weekend days I worked out when I didn’t have access to my monitor (I keep my monitor at work because I use the gym there at lunch). For example, I discovered yoga in 2011 and went mostly on weekends. I would guess that I went to 15 untracked yoga classes at the very least, probably more. However, I’ll go with the conservative number of 15. I’ll add zero workouts for the days I forgot my monitor as I didn’t forget very often and I have no good way to estimate how often that happened.
Adjusted Total Number of workouts: 193
That brings me up to 53% of the days of 2011. Not bad. I’d rather be closer to 255 total workouts but the number of times I work out is not nearly as important as how the workouts moved me toward my goal.
Total tracked time spent working out: 141 hours, 49 minutes, 12 seconds
This doesn’t really mean much but it’s fun to see how much time I actually spent working out last year.
Average workout time: 45 minutes
Because I work out at work, I can’t be away from my office for too long so I can’t push much past 45 minutes each day. I’ve learned to waste very little time and pack as much into my workouts as I can.
Total Number of calories burned: 102,717
I didn’t track the calories I ate so there is no good reference for what this means.
Average calories burned per workout: 577
That’s 12.8 calories per minute. Not too shabby.
Total Number of strength workouts: 105
Total time spent on strength workouts: 59 hours, 32 minutes, 1 second
Total Number of cardio workouts: 97
Total time spent on cardio workouts: 54 hours, 46 minutes, 8 seconds
That’s pretty balanced which is what I was aiming for. You may notice that the strength and cardio times don’t add up to the total time spent working out listed above. That’s because I tracked my cool down and stretching separately. If you want to do the math, the difference between the sum of strength and cardio and the total time is the time I spent on stretching and cool down.
You’ll also notice that the strength and cardio workouts add up to 202 workouts but that I only registered 178 workouts. Some days I did have the time to do both strength and cardio on the same day. Those were special days. Don’t tell my boss.
There you go. Way more information on my workouts than you ever wanted.