The training log

The training log is perhaps the most underused and underrated tool in making the athlete better. I have kept a training log since my junior year in high school – 57 years. Why, because we had a pro football player from the Dallas Cowboys come and speak to us and one of the things, he emphasized was writing down your workout. It made sense, so I started.

As I got to college it became even more meaningful as we had little or no guidance in regard to our physical preparation at Fresno State 1964 to 68 (Few did in those years). In 1969 when I began coaching, I emphasized that each athlete keeps a training log. I began to notice that over the years that those who kept detailed logs had a better command of what there were doing and the process to getting better. They were able to give me more accurate feedback as to what was effective and what was not. I still emphasize it with the athletes I coach today. It gives the athlete a sense of responsibility and ownership. It is a great resource to gauge progress or trace training errors.

Here are some ideas of what should be included in a comprehensive training log:

Topic Details
Basic Info Day/Date, Time of Day, Weather
Pre-training Readiness Scale 1 to 10 scale – 10 feeling peppy, fired up ready to go, 1 being low motivation tired.
Actual Workout Warm-up (Be specific)
Actual Workout (Details)
Recovery/Regeneration Type/Method duration
Sleep Length & Quality
Nutrition Any meals missed or changes from ordinary diet
Note any life stress 24 Hour Athlete
Time of Workout To nearest quarter hour – The last day of each week note total hours trained and number of training sessions. Note: I have found that when there are more sessions relative to hours trained the athlete adaptive response is better. There look at ratio of hours trained to number of sessions. Anything over 15 minutes counts as a training session.
Training Demand Rating 1 to 10 Scale (Encourage verbal descriptors)

10 – toughest workout ever!
1 – I could do that forever

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