Best Laid Plans

BLP Ep #120: When Planning and Fitness Collide with Allison Sizemore

November 14, 2022

Planning and fitness – you can certainly stay fit without any planning whatsoever. But for me, they go hand in hand. Planning helps me on a day-to-day basis to get in the workouts that help with fitness goals, which have varied from getting stronger and improving body composition to training for a race.

(Right now, I’m definitely in endurance/race mode. My running plans are quire elaborate and detailed, and my strength plans are more loose/unstructured. In past seasons, I’ve done the opposite!)

Allison Sizemore is an exercise enthusiast, fitness trainer, and owner of Couture Fitness, a fitness and coaching program based in Kansas City. She is also a long time BOBW and BLP listener, and has a lot of thoughts about the intersection between planning and fitness, both in terms of ease of coordination and the ultimate outcomes she’s seen from her clients.

She shares her current planning setup, including her digital workout calendars:

here’s an example she sent! Minimalist yet effective- love it.

Next year, I’m thinking of tracking all details related to running/workouts in a Hobonichi Weeks. This might be overkill because the Apple Workout app has most of the data, but having one place to write down split paces and fueling hits and misses I think will be helpful, and being able to physically flip through might help me better appreciate trends over time . . .

When and where do you plan your workouts, if you do choose to plan them out in advance? Also interested in those who keep a completely spontaneous approach but still manage to stay active!


  • Reply Grateful Kae November 14, 2022 at 7:52 am

    Have only listened to half so far, but just want to say I LOVE how she seems to promote a very balanced approach to fitness!! Such a wonderful, healthy, sustainable approach. Love how she talks about not stressing over fitting in workouts over holidays/ travel- no big deal to take days of. And her sample calendar plan looks very reasonable and balanced as well.

    I personally just jot my workouts down at the top of the weekly page in my Wonderland 222. But I use pencil, because I end up missing/ rearranging workouts a lot, bc my life is busy right now!! I also then record what I actually did in my daily journal page (generally speaking- like it will say “Legs/ Abs- Week 2” or whatever). I have a separate notebook that accompanies me to the gym where I list out my exact reps/ sets for each exercise in my workout so I can compare the next week and aim to progress/ increase, etc.

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns November 14, 2022 at 11:21 am

    I liked her balanced approach, too, and the recognition that you need to start somewhere, even if it’s 20 minute workouts. I am guilty of ‘letting the perfect be the enemy of the good’ as Gretchen Rubin says. I am really struggling with getting my workouts in right now since I keep getting bugs from the kids. But I know I can’t push through and workout like a normal/non-immune compromised person can. So I’m focusing on my nutrition for now since that is pretty much always under my control (although harder to manage when traveling like I was last week!).

    Have you heard “Mastermind” by Taylor Swift yet? I think of you when I listen to it because she says “if you fail to plan you plan to fail.” It’s my and my 4.5yo’s favorite song of her new album right now!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger November 14, 2022 at 12:32 pm

      Yes! Love that song, too. And the whole album …

  • Reply Chelsea November 14, 2022 at 11:35 am

    This is one area where I’m 99% digital. I get my workouts from my coach via an app called V.O2, which syncs with the Garmin app so all of my actual workout data (plus my sleep, resting heart rate, etc.) live there. I usually write my workouts on my planner as well, but that’s in case I want to remind myself about a workout without having to go to one of the apps.

    I think this is another one of those questioner things. It’s hard for me to track things just for the sake of tracking them. I have to feel like I have a concrete use of the data I’m collecting. For exercise, I like to see my splits immediately after the workout, but I don’t feel like I need to have them recorded on paper for some as-yet undefined time in the future.

  • Reply Amy November 14, 2022 at 5:55 pm

    So crazy when worlds collide. Allison is my fitness coach! Thanks for the episode.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger November 14, 2022 at 6:19 pm

      Omg!!!!! That is amazing!

  • Reply Coco November 14, 2022 at 7:41 pm

    i don’t plan ahead but have a general sense of what I want to do for the week, usually 3-4 runs with sunday long run, 2-3 strength training, and rest yoga/pilates. I try to follow my body cues now so I don’t get burned out.

  • Reply Mariana November 18, 2022 at 5:07 am

    I used to plan and track in a very detailed manner, but right now I am trying to be less rigid and lessen the mental burden. I have a general idea of what I want to do (yoga every day, gym for lifting 2-3x week, some kind of cardio 2-3x week too). I schedule + track my workouts on Google Calendar and for the strength training, I use an app called FitNotes. Super easy way to keep track of exercises, load, sets and reps!

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