FAN MAIL FRIDAYS: How Do I Gauge The Progress of My Workout?

I'm really enjoying all these fitness queries that I've been getting from you guys. I'm glad that they are inspiring you in whatever way, big or small. Anyway! Our Fan Mail Fitness Friday question is from Claire:

Hi Martha, 

I'm a silent follower of your IG account and I particularly love your mini fitness videos. You really inspire me to push harder in my workouts, and your series of vids featuring the Bora Shred workout is my favorite. I tried 'em one time and I wasn't able to finish everything and I barely made it out of the gym alive. lol!  Even if that workout almost killed me (I'm exaggerating here), that gave me a kick in the butt and made me realize that I haven't been pushing myself enough! 
Going to my question, I just want to ask how one can measure his/her success and progress in their workout? I have been working out for the past 3 months and so far, I haven't seen any change in my body, although I feel that I don't get tired easily like before. Now I'm thinking if this is really progress or if I'm just fooling myself. Will wait for your response! 

Before, I can only do planks. Now, I can do planks with a 20-lb. tire on my back. Next goal is to have an actual human on my back!

Hi Claire!

What a very nice question! Regarding the statement "I have been working out for the past 3 months and so far, I haven't seen any change in my body, although I feel that I don't get tired easily like before. Now I'm thinking if this is really progress or if I'm just fooling myself", all I can say is your performance cannot lie-if you don't get tired easily like before, then that means you've had some sort of progression already-you owe yourself some credit and try to give yourself some sometimes so you won't be tempted to just drop your fitness regimen. Don't be too harsh on yourself.

The body, in my opinion, is not really the best barometer of fitness especially for women. Why? Because our weight fluctuates during the menstrual cycle and this means you can pack on 6 lbs. (of water) easily and we retain more water than men, thus you may conclude that you gained weight. The body can really frustrate you and it will affect your mindset when you stress over it so my advice is: STOP CHASING THE ABS. CHASE THE SETS AND REPS INSTEAD!

Let me make this easier to picture for you. Click READ MORE and I'll tell you how I measure my progress in fitness in 3 easy ways.

January- February: Pressing at 10lbs, simple squat. March-May: Pressing at 20lbs., squat with 15lb. plate. May- June: Pressing at 30-40lbs., squat with 20lb plate. Present: Pressing at 30-50lbs., squat with 30lb plate.


- When you can lift heavier and add more repetitions and sets, those are signs of progression already.

From floor- level mountain climbers, I can finally do elevated mountain climbers-on a swiss ball!


- When you can finally level up a certain exercise, you have progressed already. For example: from military push- ups, you can finally do v push- ups. From 10" box jumps, you can finally do 20" box jumps.


- The photo on the left was a screenshot from a video of mine last October 2013 while the one on the right was taken last April 2014. In October, I was a very slow puncher and my reflexes sucked, but right now, I could say that I'm a pretty quick puncher and my reflexes have improved immensely-I have also progressed to Resistance Band Boxing already. If you can finally go faster and dig deeper, then congratulations-you have finally progressed.

Remember these three words whenever you want to measure your progress in your fitness journey: BETTER, STRONGER, FASTER

You know, a fit body is like money: the more you chase it, the more it runs away from you. So how do you get money easily? Do what you love and love what you do-same thing goes with fitness: If you want to be better, stronger, and faster, that only means you love what you're doing and soon enough, that fit body will come.

When I decided to base my fitness principles on these three objectives 7 months ago, I lost more weight (more than I expected), but what I am happier about is my overall conditioning, strength, and endurance have improved. AND-I am finally starting to see those ab cuts on my torso. :)))))

You also have to keep in mind that progression doesn't stop at a certain point-it's not called progression for nothing so keep going! :)

Good luck in your fitness journey, Claire! Oh, don't forget to EAT HEALTHY! :)

**Got a burning question about makeups, skin care products, beauty, dieting, and health tips, relationships, and whatever? Just send them to or shoot 'em up at The Beauty Junkee's FB Fan Page via the MESSAGE button and I'll get back to you as soon as possible. (Please, do not send me Math- related queries. :D)

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8 Lovely Thoughts

  1. This post is so amazing! I think a lot of people can relate! Me too, sometimes I feel like I'm working out for nothing, but then I notice I have more energy now than before. Slow progress is always better than no progress. Stay motivated!

    Gabi Barbará (totes amaze girl Chloe)

  2. Good post! Just what I need to read for a post-partum soon :)

  3. Hi Martha, just wanna know, are you taking supplements? I've been wanting to since I got into Crossfit training. I just can't find the right one for me. I'm still doing my research.

    I'm doing good in my chosen fitness regimen in fact I want to try Muay Thai next month. The trainer educated me what to expect and he said it's more intense than my usual crossfit training.

    By the way, as for me, I know that I'm getting better, faster and stronger when I feel pain the next day after the workout. That's how I gauge my strength and endurance. Whenever I do the program and it didn't feel any change, I add more weights and reps on my usual routine.

    I wanna say thank you for being one of my inspirations by the way. No kidding. I've been watching your IG videos and told to myself that I wanna do the same training that you have. I actually learned the #Crossfit thing from you so I did a little research and found out that it just started in the Phils. in 2013and more people are getting the rave and switch to try it. Lucky me there's one nice Box in my city!

    Martha you are not just into beauty but also health and fitness which makes more of your readers admire you. Please keep inspiring everyone ;)

  4. great advice if you really exercise well you will achieve what you want and boost your confidence more~

  5. This is more like a motivation post. I just want to flatten my tummy and I think all I need to do is do crunches, cardio and jog, right? I can't stand the word "DIET" because I really love fooooods. But Ireally want to have a flat tummy or better yet, have an abs. Haha! :D

  6. As always, very thoughtful, honest and helpful advice from Ms.M! I'll remember that:BETTER, STRONGER, FASTER. Focus on progress, even how little they'll get there someday!

  7. Jen: Right on!

    Gabi: Hi Gabi! Nice to hear from you again! :) You're right, small progress is better than no progress! :) That's one of my mantras in fitness. :)

    Eddielli: Thank you! :)

    Jen: Glad to have helped you! :)

    Itsmefati: Dear, lift weights if you wanna lose fat. :) That's the most effective in losing overall fat (including that dratted belly fat) and even experts will agree. :)

    Marielle: Hi Marielle! I blogged about the supplements I take in here. :) Here's the link:

    Glad that I am inspiring you even in the littlest way. :) I'm now focusing on fitness because I finally realized that being a Beauty Blogger is maintaining beauty on the outside and inside. Hey, Muay Thai is a very good work out-I think I might try it soon enough because the gym that I'm working out in offers that too. It's really intense!


Thank you for your comments!