Health journal ideas
As we all know having a health goal or objective and actually achieving that goal are two very different creatures. A health journal helps you to set your goal and then monitor the progress you make as you move towards that goal. You don’t need a journal to be healthy, but a journal is a great way to work you way through an action plan that can be equal parts mental wellness and physical challenge
A health goal is any desired outcome that pertains to your physical or mental wellbeing and a health journal helps you to set a goal. You then monitor your progress in the health journal using trackers such as: meal plans; weight charts; sleep logs; self care routines and exercise trackers.Sarah Banks
All health journal ideas are useful if they have a positive impact on your overall health and the results you are trying to achieve. If you start your health journal and it doesn’t work for you, don’t be discouraged. Just try another method, or another type of journaling practice.
We have more blog resources on fitness and healthy eating / weight loss for you to read. Why not check out:
Health journal ideas – divided into what and how
Establishing a daily routine is a good place to start. Some journals need to be kept regularly and other journals don’t need that same level of attention. A health journal definitely needs to be kept regularly for maximum benefit. So find a time each day when you can sit down with your journal and use it.
Divide your health journal out into its component parts. So whatever you want to track has its own section. Keep a list, like an index list of those sections and use that list as your journal prompt for each day.
Go through the list in order, or any order that you like and work through your journal. In that way you don’t need to rely on motivation each day you can simply start with the list and work through it.
Some days you just need to get everything out on paper, so allow for a brain dump in your journal. When you are just starting to keep a journal you might want to do a brain dump of everything that is in your mind.
During the process of keeping to an exercise routine you might want to do a brain dump if you are feeling stretched or tired or overwhelmed especially if you are pushing yourself to achieve a new goal.
You can accompany the brain dump with a mind map and give order to the random thoughts that come out.
Daily to-do- list
Keep a daily to-do list of your activities can help keep you on track.
End of the day
For some people, journaling at the end of the day puts the day to bed. You journal about your experience of the day, what went right, what could go better tomorrow.
Writing a love letter to yourself and incorporating it into your health journal is a beautiful way of reminding yourself that you are ok. You’re not a better person because you stick to your action plan and achieve your goals.
You are beautiful and loved and a love letter is a powerful tool that reminds you only to aim for goals because you want to, not because you’ll be a more worthy person than you currently are.
Why would you want to track your mood? Well, you might want to track your mood to learn more about how factors such as exercise, rest, sleep and nutrition affect your mood and for what period of time. You might also want to track your mood to see how external and internal factors affect how you feel.
Mental health issues
Exercise and health routines are powerful ways of alleviating mental health issues. They do not replace medical help, but for those people suffering from mild mental health issues exercise and good nutrition can help restore balance to your mind and body.
Journaling about this journey is not only therapeutic in itself, but, should the symptoms arise again you will have a pre-made plan of how to help treat yourself.
Bullet journaling / bullet journal trackers
Bullet journaling, or bujo is so popular. Although bullet journal charts look very simple, there is a great deal of thought that goes behind the whole framework, so if you are interested I recommend that you read more on the bullet journal official website.
If you are a systematic person who likes ticking items off your todo list then you’ll love a habit tracker. And if you’re not so systematic, you might well be after using a habit tracker for a while.
A habit tracker is an easy way to monitor healthy habits and health goals. You can track your habits in all sorts of ways. Habit tracking involves your ongoing monitoring of a habit on a daily basis.
This monitoring process can help you stay on track with your goal as well as monitor it. A bit like the Seinfeld Strategy for jokes, a habit tracker can help you maintain your health and fitness goals. And like the Seinfeld Strategy the key point is to pick a habit that is easy to perform on a daily basis.
Weight loss trackers
There is a huge variety of weight loss trackers available plus you can make your own. Creating a personal weight loss tracker could potentially help you stay on course and be a fun way to monitor your weight loss progress. I love this post by Erin Condren about her weight loss journey and creating her own tracker.
If you want to develop a new habit around fitness, what exactly would you like to do? How would you like to get fit and how will you know when you are fit? A health journal can help you record your thoughts on both of those. Decide for yourself rather than read too many articles and feel that you have to get fit in a certain way and do certain exercise regimes or routines. You may not want to run, or go to a spinning class. Instead you may want to dance and go hiking.
Whatever it is, in order for it to have a positive effect on your life, make sure it is something you really want to do. Health journal ideas around fitness goals would include a variety of journaling points such as: the goal itself, the plan, monitoring your progress.
You could also track your mental state, how you moved from feeling one way to feeling another as you undertook your goal. Writing down these fitness journal ideas will also help you when you want to set another goal, which may or may not be related to fitness. Once you know you can achieve one goal, your will be much more incentivised to achieve another.
There are so many ways that health journal ideas for health trackers. Firstly, if you are not healthy but are setting a goal to become more healthy then you can use your health journal to track specific goals around that goal.
For instance you can track your weight, or your glucose levels, or you BMI. Of course you can use fitbits, apple watches and phone apps to keep track of your health
Sleep tracker / sleep log
I don’t know about you but I am just grateful to have a good night’s sleep and don’t give it a second thought. But I do know people who really struggle to sleep and keep a sleep log may be one of those little things that makes all the difference.
Tracker ideas include: room temperature, outside temperature, time you went to bed, what your activities were before you went to bed, how long before bed you ate, your water consumption, whether you exercised that day and if so at what time.
Mental health journal / Mental health bullet journal ideas
Journaling is therapeutic and when your emotions are running wild because of your mental health it can be one of the best ways of gathering your thoughts on a bad day.
Bullet journals can help you track patterns and organise your life and health. All kinds of journals can help you do this, though, and the point is that
Bullet journal fitness tracker
This topic is similar to the fitness tracker above, but with the added twist that it is undertaken with the bullet journal.
You can create your own trigger tacker within your health journal. A trigger tracker tracks those situations where your great plans and goals could be derailed. For example if you have decided not to drink for the month of January and you walk into a bar having decided not to drink.
And everything is going ok but then everyone is sitting at the table having their drinks and you are loving the moment. And in that moment you order a drink. What has just happened?
If you go back and work through the time before you ordered that drink you might find that everyone sitting together at the table, having a drink and having fun is a trigger for you. If you track it and work out what the trigger is you can make a note of it and be prepared next time the same situation arises.
You might have started a yoga regime and everything is going smoothly until you start to get busy at work and getting to the office earlier in the morning. You now have less time in the morning. You think you’ll do your yoga practice in the evening but it doesn’t happen. The next day you think the same thing and it doesn’t happen. Or you manage a couple of sessions, but it doesn’t feel the same.
Obviously your physical health declines a little because you’re not exercising. Eventually your yoga practice ceases completely. So the routine goes entirely. And the reason, the trigger, was simply that you changed your morning routine and didn’t replace it with an equally good one.
Diet plan / Meal planning
I love meal planning and when I don’t plan the meals out on a weekly basis I definitely don’t eat as healthy and probably eat slightly more than normal if I don’t make sure that I am properly fed at meal times.
If you are trying to be healthy I would say this habit is nearly indispensible to a successful health journal and it;s a great idea for budgeting too as buying in advance tends to be more costs effective than buying on a whim.
If you are keeping a health journal you will probably want to track your exercise. You can track exercise in whatever way you want. As well as tracking exercise you can track your motivation levels, how you felt during the exercise and anything else which might encourage you to engage more deeply with your health goals.
Although a health journal monitors facts, make your journal as personal as possible. Monitor how you feel before, during and after exercise. Journal about the exercise. Whether it could be performed in a different way, whether you want to try something different.
Put all of yourself into your exercise journal in order to present a 365 degree version of you back to yourself.
Weight loss goals
Weight loss goals are a part of a health journal for some people. Putting your weight loss goals into a health journal where you are also tracking other elements such as exercise, nutrition, sleep is a healthy way of developing good habits. If you see weight loss as part of your overall health routine you will have a much more balanced view on your own life.
How you track your weight loss is entirely up to you, that’s the beauty of a journal, there are no rights and no wrongs! You can track with a simple graph using time on the x axis and weight on the y axis. You could also journal about your weight as you lose it. Each week you could weigh yourself, record your weight in your journal and then journal about how you feel.
You can use your weight loss goal entries in the health journal to describe what kind of life you will have when you have lost your weight. What will be different? What will be the same? Will you wear different clothes?
Tracking your anxiety levels is a really great way of addressing your own mental health issues and needs. I have found that addressing negative emotions and examining what is giving me anxiety and why has been a really amazing way of getting to know myself much better.
Although anxiety is a mental issue, it can manifest itself physically. You can literally feel the anxiety in your body. When you are monitoring where you anxiety is and what you are thinking you are addressing difficult emotions and doing the hard work of getting to know yourself.
Being able to control your anxiety, to work through your anxiety is a really great health resource that you can give to yourself. Giving as much attention to your brain as to your physically body in your health journal is a very wise practice.
All you need to do is write. Write how you feel, write where you can feel the anxiety and write about different techniques (breathing, nutrition, sleep) that you are using to alleviate your anxiety levels.
Fitness bullet journal
Track your health goals in a fitness bullet journal. You can track your overall health routine or you could track one exercise that you’d like to start and make a habit of, for example, you could track starting to do push ups, or the plank. Using your bullet journal like this can help you develop a new habit while continuing with your usual fitness routine.
Self-care should definitely be part of anyone’s health journal. Decide what self-care means for you. Don’t take someone else’s version of what self-care looks like. For me it’s definitely a bath; a nap; having my nails done; a face pack; reading; 10 minutes on the bed with a cup of coffee and a magazine!
For you it might be a shower and time in the garden. Or you might like to go and have a massage. Whatever your self care routine looks like that is totally personal to you is the perfect routine.
Often, the activities that we like to do are pushed out of our calendar by the activities that we need to do. This is where including your self care routine into your health journal is such a great idea. Once you have identified an activity and are tracking it, you are much more likely to do it.
So create those pages and use them and monitor them along with your other health activities and you’ll find it much easier to incorporate your self-care routine in with your regular exercise and fitness timetable.