I wanted to document the entire process – the ups and downs, what I eat every day, how much exercise I’m doing, how much sleep I’m getting, etc.
Another reason for keeping a diary is to be able to remember the dates of important events (such as the specific days I am feeling really tired, stressful days, or simply when I eat food that isn’t great for me!).
It has been really easy to write as I schedule myself to do it everyday, just before going to bed, and it takes only about 5 to 10 minutes.
The following is a list of the topics I write about in my diary:
Glucose levels: Two years ago, my doctor recommended that I measure my glucose levels on a daily basis. I previously used a glucose meter two times per day, however, since my glucose levels stabilized due to lifestyle changes, I now only use the meter a few times per week, just to make sure that my levels are okay. It is also very useful when I’m feeling dizzy or very tired to clarify if it is due to an imbalance in my glucose levels.
Body temperature. One of the symptoms of hypothyroidism is an intolerance to cold temperatures. This is one of the symptoms I still have, and it is probably more accentuated because of my weight. However, I have noticed slight changes to my body temperature since I increased my consumption of fresh fruit. I measure my body temperature a couple of times per week using a thermometer. The trick is to have it next to your bed and to make sure it’s the fist thing you do when you wake up in the morning. It takes less than 5 minutes.
Body weight: I measure my body weight once per week. The balance I use not only measures total weight, but also body fat, water levels, and muscle and bone density. This is incredibly helpful as it enables me to know, for example, if I am increasing muscle mass with my exercise routine. The balance is also a great tool as you can see in numbers how your body assimilates food and exercise.
Meals and snacks. I note every single snack and meal that I have during the day, if I prepared it myself, if i went to a restaurant that day, etc. I also note the amount of water and tea that I have during the day.
Exercise (type and duration): I write very briefly about the activity that I do during the day, when I do it, and the amount of time spent exercising. I also note how I feel after the exercise and if my performance has improved.
Sleep: It is really important to keep an eye on your sleep. It is essential to write down the total hours and the perceived quality of sleep. I normally classify it as either: Great, Good, Not Great, and Bad.
Any other factors: digestion, stress, tiredness, and allergies, all of which are important areas to also take note of.
This diary has been the best way to keep myself on track but also to look back at the progress I have made for the past two years. It doesn’t have to be perfect but it has to be honest so you can always look back and see where there is room for improvement.