Why I Track My Workouts

Tracking WorkoutsWhen it comes to working out in the traditional sense, I've never been able to stick to a routine. I'm talking about lifting weights or aerobic fitness routines you might do in a gym or at home. I might try a routine, I might even do it for an entire week, but I always bail for one reason: it's not enjoyable.

Since I got serious about keeping fit, I've learned to stick to scheduled workouts I actually enjoy. In addition to sports like baseball, hockey and volleyball, these activities are:

  • Biking
  • Swimming
  • Walking

For a solid 10 months I swam a kilometre a day every weekday. Recently, I've swapped the pool for the bike. I track all of it, every ride, every swim and every long walk, using MapMyRun. Here's what August 2013 looks like.

Screen shot 2013-08-29 at 12.45.12 PM

Why do I track each workout? I do it for two reasons:

  1. It's fun
  2. I like to compete against myself

When I tackle a defined route, I'll compare my split times to the last time I rode it. I aim to kick my own ass.

Do you track your workouts?

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Comments (12 - click here to join in!)


I use Strava for tracking rides.

Sadly it's mostly just been commutes for the last two months, but that's still around 120 KM a week. And at least if I'm doing to the same commute every day, I can compare total time, average speed, cadence, etc. I find it practically hilarious how different my performance is based on amount of sleep or alcohol consumed the previous evening.

Great way to clear a hangover though.

August 29, 2013 @ 1:27 PM


I'll monitor distances - I did so for about 18 or 20 Toronto bike paths back in 2006 ('before' any of them had scores of government employed signages posted) - but rarely my time spent.
The only time monitoring, for jogging, I used was if/when I would pass High Park's People Train at one corner of its circular route and I re-passed it before it reached an opposite corner. Now a measurable portion of High Park's long time nature trail (parallel to the N-E paved windy road course) is gated and fenced specifically for a dog run before its - across another paved road's - lease free area (and also as leading towards that park's consignment plot gardens, and outdoor theatre).

August 29, 2013 @ 2:38 PM



I jumped on the swimming thing when you told me what you were doing last year. I don't have an in building or at home pool like you do (for now), but I go to the local community centre (Memorial Pool). I'm only doing 0.5/km per day, but I am getting better.

I started using MapMyRide when you tweeted about it. I'm really starting to sound like a brown noser here.

MMR is pretty good, but I won'tt pay the fees they want for the non-free service. Waaay too expensive. The free version is annoying in that they pop open an ad every single time you click on anything, but I plan to migrate to the Garmin app as my Edge 510 bike computer does all of this plus heart rate, which I even use in hockey, but it doesn't (that I know) track the nutrition like MMR, which I really like.

Mike, when you get to our age, heart rate is the best measure of health and performance.


August 29, 2013 @ 2:42 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


It's funny you mentioned Memorial pool. I'm looking for a pool to do lengths in during the winter when I'm not biking. Memorial is one of the pools I'm looking at...

August 29, 2013 @ 3:40 PM


Memorial is good-ish

As with any public pool there are going to be morons that think they are going to make the Olympic team and then there are the rest of us. I like to swim in the morning, so I am there MWF between 7 and 8:25

The staff are awesome, the pool is a nice temp in the summer and a little warm for my liking in the winter, so it's probably perfect for the masses.


August 29, 2013 @ 3:44 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


Sounds good... I'll check it out once the snow starts to fall...

August 29, 2013 @ 4:00 PM



Have you looked at Strava? The 510 can upload to it directly too. I prefer it to the Garmin app because the social/competitive aspects are much better designed.

I primarily use it for metrics on "segments". Users definite certain routes, and then you can compare your performance against all the other people that have ridden them with their stats uploaded.

August 29, 2013 @ 4:52 PM


Well, I don't really track my workouts. My personal trainer makes sure he mixes things up so it's not just the same routine. I don't ride any bike now except the exercise bike. I'll go on the treadmill as well and do weights. In the winter I go skating and in the summer when the weather isn't too hot, I like to play tennis and baseball.

August 29, 2013 @ 6:00 PM


I track my runs and other cardio or yoga sessions via Running Room and the Garmin app for my watch. I am not competitive or fast, but use the Running Room app to measure how much life is (or should be) left on my shoes, and the Garmin one to compare progress.

August 29, 2013 @ 7:36 PM


If you are close to the lower Toronto Mississauga border, there is the Cawthra High School's indoor pool. It's a quick drop down from the QEW interchange. Easy driving, and easy parking.
(I think I might still have a leftover single use admission pass from ... years ago.)

August 29, 2013 @ 7:50 PM

Rick C in Oakville

Wow , seems like a lot of work, will stick with my sedentary life style. Just busted your chops, wish I could get this motivated.

August 30, 2013 @ 8:32 PM

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