Wall Chart - starting to track progress
In yesterday’s post I mentioned at the end that I was going to make a wall chart to track my progress toward my 3,000 bike miles goal.
Adrian Finch (an aspiring 5,000 mile hero) asked if I use My Cycling Log, bikejournal or CycleSmart to keep track of my progress, and my reply was that I prefer pen and paper. This preference stems from my experience working as a Lean consultant in various manufacturing firms. One of the pillars of Lean is to make change visible. And one of the main techniques for this is called Visual Management:
“In visual management, simple visual tools are used to identify the target state, and any deviance is met with corrective action”
Now the computer tools that Adrian asked about will do that. But systems that reside inside the beige box are somehow disconnected from the user. My experience is that they tend not to be as efficient (in terms of time - boot up / find programme / open file, etc), nor as effective as more simple, paper or whiteboard based systems.
The ability to engage, share, and show-and-tell with big poster-sized systems means that they’re far more effective than the slicker, more ‘professional’ looking computer alternatives.
So here are a couple of pictures of what I’m putting together for my triathlon training this year. Firstly, I’m going to use my home office’s white board (two sheets of 55×80cm glass from Ikea - far cheaper than Nobo boards, and blends in with the scenery) :
This gives an overall picture of the size I have to play with. It needs more adding to it, like
- Goals spelt out, with my A, B & C races in a time line.
- A weekly schedule + a single goal for the week
- Running & swimming charts
- Food & nutrition?
- Friends / things that’ll potentially derail training & need scheduling in.
- The year broken down into fortnights
- Fortnightly target & progress (left hand side)
- Cumulative miles (right hand side)
- Cumulative target line.
With this, I colour in the fortnight’s bar chart (using a yellow highlighter pen) after each ride, building up to give the fortnight’s total. I then mark an ‘X’ for the cumulative total at the end of each fortnight, joining the ‘Xs’ up as I go. So I have control during each two weeks, and can see progress toward my overall goal.