This is a question that I do receive a lot.
Making progress in the gym is what we all want.
Some like to build muscle; some like to lose fat; some want to lift more weight….
Some want it all!
But how do we know if we are moving forward in our routine and not backward?
The most significant sign that you are making progress in the gym:
You will start seeing incremental changes, not in your physique initially, but in the amount of “volume” that you can move. Volume= sets x reps x weight… we can also add in rest time as to this as well.
Over the weeks of consistent training, you will likely not realize that things will start to become more comfortable. Still, you absolutely will be lifting more of one of the above “volume” metrics. Being able to see your incremental changes is why it is so essential to log your routine, including rest meticulously. By doing this, you will be able to see gradual improvements.
In addition to volume increases, here is an example of what I like to call “weather vs. climate.”
Climate is the overall trend of patterns on average from year to year.
Weather happens daily (will it rain or will it be cold today).
The weather is not very accurate, but climate is very accurate.
Where I am going with this: You need to log your day-to-day over some time to know if you are improving on average. Your day-to-day may go up or down from Monday to Wednesday in the same week, but your 3-month volume trend WILL increase from day 1 to day 120 with regular exercise.
Please let me know if you have any questions.