Weight Loss and Fitness Progress Chart

White tape measure (tape measuring length in meters and centimeters)
MartinPrague / Getty Images

One important ingredient of successful weight loss is keeping track of your progress and monitoring things like your weight, measurements and body fat on a regular basis. Checking in on these things from time to time can keep you on your game and let you know if you're slipping out of your healthy habits.

How to Use a Weight Loss and Fitness Progress Chart

It's up to you how often you want to take these measurements. You might want to weigh yourself once a week (although many people do this daily) and take your measurements every 4 weeks to check your progress.

Date:   __________________

Weight:   ________________

Body fat: ________________

Resting Heart Rate: ________

Circumference Measurements:

Waist: __________________

Hips:  __________________

Chest: __________________

Abs:  __________________

Arms: __________________

Thigh: __________________

Calves: ________________

Body Fat Measurements

There are a variety of ways to get your body fat, some more accurate than others. The simplest is to use a body fat calculator, although it's only an estimate. You can also get your body fat tested by a personal trainer at the gym or at some universities.

Resting Heart Rate

Your heart rate reflects how hard your heart works during exercise and tracking your resting heart rate (RHR) over time can help you see your fitness gains as it gets lower and lower. RHR is usually between 50 and 100 beats per minute. Athletes and those who exercise regularly will typically have a lower RHR while sedentary people will have a higher RHR.

Your goal is to lower your resting heart rate.

You should try to measure your heart rate first thing in the morning before you get busy with other things and your heart rate rises. Simply count how many times your heart beats in 1 minute. If you can't measure it first thing in the morning, make sure you measure it after you've been resting (at least 4 hours since exercise or other vigorous activity) and a couple of hours after eating. It helps if you lie down 30 minutes before you take the measurement. Ideally, you want to take your RHR for 5 days to get an average.

How to Take Body Measurements

Waist: Measure your waist without holding the tape too tightly (or too loosely). As a rough guide, your waist is the narrowest part of your trunk or approximately 1 inch above your belly button.

Hips: Measure the hips around the fullest part of your buttocks with your heels together.

Thighs: Measure the upper thighs, just below where the buttocks merge into the back thigh.

Chest: Measure around the fullest part of the chest

About Your Weight

A few things about your weight. You know that the scale measures everything—your bones, muscles, organs, anything you ate or drank, etc. For this reason, scale weight doesn't always tell you if you're making progress.

In fact, if you're lifting weights, you may be adding muscle to your body while losing fat, something that doesn't always show up on the scale. Monitoring your weight is important for making sure you're not going in the wrong direction (i.e., gaining weight), but it may not reflect all the changes that are happening in your body.

Don't get discouraged if the scale doesn't change the way you think it should. Focus more on what you're doing and on your measurements.

Print and record new measurements every 4 weeks. Try to avoid measuring every day as small changes typically don't show up on measuring tape. Your body is changing even if you can't see it yet.

Was this page helpful?