What Makes a Good Workout Log?

Posted On:
Friday, August 28, 2020
Updated On:
Monday, October 30, 2023
Stream On:
Apple PodcastsSpotifyBuzzsproutiHeart RadioiHeart RadioPocketCasts
A cell phone screen shot of the Final Surge app showing a Workout Log.

I’ve been asked different variations of the following question by five different athletes since Sunday:

“I feel like I should have more to say about my workouts, but I don’t.  Is there something else I should be including in my notes?”

My answer to each of these athletes has been similar: While Final Surge is a wonderful tool for the athletes who I’m working with to communicate with me about how their workouts go, Final Surge’s TRUE value lies in being a great log for the athlete to have to look back on as they move forward in their endurance sports journey.

I will admit it: I made a mistake.  I look at SO many workout logs each and every day (and have for YEARS at this point) that I forgot that the rest of you out there who are not coaches do NOT see logs of athletes other than yourselves.  *Insert Homer Simpson DOH here*

What does this mean?  Well, many of you out there may never have seen a workout log, so therefore, it makes complete and total sense that you would be wondering what you “should” be including in your own workout logs.

Here are some questions I recommend asking yourself as you consider what to write for your post-workout notes/log:

  • “What did I do during this workout?”
  • “How did I feel during this workout?”
  • “Was anything going on in my life that could have impacted how this went (good or bad)?”
  • “What sensations did I experience during this workout?”
  • “What information would be useful for me to have from this workout to look back on in the future?”
  • “What am I likely to forget about what I experienced during this workout if I don't write it down soon after I finish this workout?”
  • “What things of interest did I see during this workout?”
  • “Is there something entertaining that happened on this ride that I want to remember, will find amusing once some time has passed, or that my coach will get a chuckle out of?”

Building on this, I thought I might give an example of one of my own personal workout logs from Final Surge to see if this helps you.  If necessary, I’ll use the Pain & Injury Report function, and I always use the Weather Log, RPE, How I Felt, and Gear functions.  In the Post-Workout Notes section of Final Surge, I write something using a very similar “template” or format for all of my workout logs:

Weather Conditions:
Sunny/Partly Sunny/Cloudy/Intermittent Rain, 74°F, 68% Humidity, 30+ mph sustained winds from the South with gusts of 50+ mph

Surface Conditions:
Dry/Wet Asphalt/Concrete

Exciting Things Observed:
A runner dressed as the Yellow Brick Road (Get it? Get it? Follow the Yellow Brick Road.)

Hydration Consumed:
~105 ounces of water + ~30 ounces of Gatorade = ~135 ounces total

Nutrition Consumed:
Three SIS Energy Gels (66 grams total)
+ Three HUMA+ Gels (66 grams total)
+ Three Honey Stinger Gels (73 grams total)
+ One GU Roctane (21 grams)
+ Red Gatorade (~55 grams)
= 281 grams of carbohydrates total (1,181 calories total)

Nutrition/Hydration Intervals:

  • I drank a few ounces of water every five minutes.
  • I drank at least two ounces of Gatorade at each Aid Station, which was every two miles.

0:30 – HUMA+ Gel (Caffeine)
1:00 – SIS Energy Gel + Electrolytes
1:30 – Honey Stinger Gel (Caffeine)
2:00 – SIS Energy Gel + Electrolytes
2:30 – HUMA+ Gel (Caffeine)
3:00 – SIS Energy Gel + Electrolytes
3:30 – HUMA+ Gel (Caffeine)

So there you have it!  I hope that this helps you as you log your workouts in the coming days and weeks.  Remember: your training log is a VERY valuable resource.  Can’t remember what worked for you on that long run in half marathon training three years ago?  Look back on your log and your very good notes, and all of a sudden, you’re not starting from scratch. :)  

Go forth and be excellent workout loggers, my friends! :)


Coach Laura Henry

Laura Henry is a Syracuse, NY-based coach who is a USA Triathlon Level II Long Course and Level II Paratriathlon Certified Coach, USA Cycling Level 2 Certified Coach, VFS Certified Bike Fitter, and has successfully completed NASM's Certified Personal Trainer course. Coach Laura is passionate about helping athletes of all ability levels reach their goals and has coached many athletes to success.

She can be reached at laura@fullcircleendurance.com.

Read Biography

Check out our other
recent Blog Posts

Start Your

Coaching Today

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Start Your

Coaching Today

Have a question or ready to get your TRAINING started?

Fill out our Contact Form to the right and we will get back to you shortly!

Check - Elements Webflow Library - BRIX Templates

Thank you

Thanks for reaching out. We will get back to you soon.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.