How do you feel right now? I bet you can answer that question. But what’s your current state of health and wellbeing? If you’re like most of us, it’s a tough one to answer.

A health journal is a great way to help you understand your lifestyle decisions. You might notice that your sleep pattern is directly related to your stress levels. Or you may even figure out you feel better when you exercise 5 times a week. Most of all, a health journal can give you incredible insight into why your efforts to address health issues fail, or why others succeed.

Keeping a health journal offers so many benefits. But it’s not just a way to count calories or keep track of medical facts. It’s also a way to keep tabs on your feelings and emotions.

Keeping tabs on wellness

A health journal keeps track of your overall health and wellness. You can customize your journal to include pretty much anything you want, like:
  • Injuries
  • Illnesses
  • Hospitalization
  • Allergies
  • Workouts
  • Vitamins and medications
  • Dietary habits
I usually try to include as much health information as I can so I can keep track of past health issues and what I do to make things better.

I also like including just how I generally feel each day and then picking up patterns. For instance, if I haven’t managed to fit in a workout or didn’t start the day with a green smoothie, I just feel sluggish and sometimes irritable.

Keep your own health journal

There are plenty of premade journals out there, so getting organized is really easy. Even a basic spiral notebook will work.

Journal 

To get started, write down the date and day of the week. If you want to, make a note of your sugar levels and blood pressure, body temperature, and current weight. These are the kinds of things you want to record at around about the same time each day. Also, write down how much sleep you got the night before, and any naps you had in the day. Make mention of how often you got up in the night and how you felt in the morning.

Weather

A lot of people feel that their wellbeing is often affected by changes in the weather. So, write down the day’s temperature, too, and any weather patterns like rain, clouds, snow, heat. Log any medication you took, including vitamins and supplements.

Note your training

If you worked out that day, write it all down. What activities did you do? How long did you work out for? How did you feel before, during, and after your session?

Physical symptoms

Also, take note of any discomfort or pain you felt during the day. Write down where the pain occurred and give it a rating on a scale of 1 – 10 for its severity. Pain can sometimes occur at the same time of day, so make a note of this. Journal any symptoms you felt throughout the day, like nausea, fatigue, bloating, heart palpitations, and so on.

Emotions

Don’t forget those emotional symptoms, too, such as sadness, anger, nervousness, and anxiety and what brought them on.

Diet

As for your dietary journaling, log your day’s diet. Include your main meals and snacks, and any other pertinent nutritional information you want to keep tabs on. By keeping note of what and how you eat, you might discover some day to day health trends to help you figure out if you’re sensitive to particular foods or if some have a better overall effect on your gut health than others.

Tips on journaling

Now that you know how to get started, I want to give you my best tips to successful journaling to help you keep it up.

Here’s what I do to stay focused, motivated, and determined to keep track of my health and wellbeing:
  • I commit to journaling every evening before bedtime
  • I keep my journal next to the bed, within easy reach
  • I make calendar reminders on my phone, so I don’t forget to journal or if something comes up that I want to remember to journal later
  • I write in private, once the kids are in bed and I’m free from distractions
  • I keep things short and organized
  • I have fun with my journal
  • I don’t stress about perfection – I just write what comes naturally
  • I make time to reflect
  • I reward myself for keeping it up!
Keeping a health journal has helped me greatly improve my overall health and wellbeing. So, isn’t it time you tried it?

 

Find more health and wellness tips at marksalinas.com

 

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