Microsoft Band Tip: Tracking Strength Gains with Guided Workouts

Microsoft Band Tip: Tracking Strength Gains with Guided Workouts

More and more Microsoft Band owners are becoming interested Guided Workouts, particularly now that Microsoft has added the ability for Microsoft Health dashboard users to create and share their own custom workouts. But, as the capability becomes more popular, new questions arise. One of the more common questions is how to track gains in strength training when you add additional weight every few weeks.

Before owning a Microsoft Band, I used printed charts to track my progress (basically, Excel spreadsheets printed and taped to the basement wall). I’d manually pencil in my list of exercises and write-out the reps and sets. Then, there would be a block for weight gains. I’d try to increase the weight for each exercise every couple weeks so I felt like I was constantly improving. It was almost as much work keeping a paper trail of my workouts as it was actually working out.

Fortunately, the Microsoft Band eliminates every piece of that. I can keep my entire workout on my wrist and have the Band’s functions lead me through reps, sets – and now even weight totals. How?

By now, you should know that you can edit any Guided Workout that you have stored in your own Microsoft Health dashboard. If you don’t have time to create your own masterpiece, we have quite a few ready-made workouts in our Microsoft Band Community share resource.

Inside each Guided Workout there’s a “Show Advanced Options” checkbox that I think many are not taking advantage of. Enabling the Advanced options for workouts brings two additional choices called Intensity and Variations. I’ll dig into the depth of these in the future, but want to focus solely on the Weight option in Intensity here.

Weight underneath the Intensity advanced option allows you to set the actual weight (lbs or kg), so that (as shown in the next image) it actually shows up in the exercise title that displays on your Microsoft Band during your workout.

So, instead of having to keep pacing back and forth between a printed workout sheet to figure out which weight plates to slide onto the barbell your Microsoft Band lets you know.

Now, here’s the extra cool piece to this:

As you get stronger and start upping the weight for each exercise, you only have to go back in and edit your workout and change the Intensity value. After making the change, your Microsoft Band will accurately reflect the new value the next time you use the same workout. Additionally, you can use the “Export Your Data” feature of the Microsoft Health dashboard to keep track of your gains over time.

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