Happy Planner Review and Fitness Planner Set Up
When the lovely Suzy Stick It had an offer on Happy Planners recently I knew I finally had to take the plunge and buy one.
Yay for new a planner!
I’d often looked at them but hadn’t got around to buying one because I didn’t have a use for it. I’d also heard amazing reviews about them which made me want one more. I still didn’t have a use for one when I actually bought it but I wanted to start making Happy Planner sticker kits for the shop. As much as I could use measurements I found online, I like to be able to test all new stickers properly and this would have been perfect for that.
The student ones were the ones on offer and after having a look though the website there didn’t appear to be anything in it that made it too much different from a normal HP. At this point it seemed silly to get the normal one for full price if I could have a cheap student one.
When I got the planner I was impressed with how sturdy it felt. From the thick paper and plastic cover it just felt a really nice quality product. Even the discs felt good and not like it was all going to drop to bits any second. It would have been nice to have a slightly bigger divider/bookmark though.
The only thing I didn’t like upon opening it was the lack of tabs on the monthly dividers. They’re a nice thick card and have lovely designs on but finding them without a tab is pretty tricky. Either tabs or a second bookmark really would have completed the planner for me.
At the end of the month was some lists. They are a nice touch but not really the kind of thing I would use in any planner. A general notes page (like in the Erin Condren) would have been more suitable for me.
I don’t really use monthly pages too much but I like the set up of these ones. Obviously a Monday start would be preferable though. The amount of useful areas around the calendar itself are fab. My favourites are the action list and birthday list. While you may wonder why a birthday list is needed if you’re just putting them on the dates anyway, I like to see all the birthdays for that month together so I can plan when to buy presents and make cards.
I’m still amazed now by the thickness of the pages. They’re such a great quality. There’s no ghosting on them at all and no decoration I’ve done on these pages have showed through or affected the following week. The design of the weekly pages are lovely and simple. The only real colour is the weekends. This is a nice addition when it’s a nice colour but some months they’re not great. The sidebar is nice and simple and I like the ‘must do’ bit at the bottom. My only issue really about the weekly set up is the thin headers. I’ve seen other Happy Planners with either no headers or bigger ones so if I were to buy another I’d just get one of those designs instead.
Why a health and fitness planner?
In the Summer I turned 29 and while my diet isn’t terrible there’s definitely more I could do to look after myself more. Being just around the corner of 30 seemed like the perfect time to get my health in order and I figured this would be perfect for the journey. The set up of the weekly pages meant I could separate food, exercise and other things I wanted to track. I could use the monthly pages to goal set and track my beginning and end weight. I’m hoping that planning and logging everything will keep me accountable.
The set up
The extra bits that I love around the dates are perfect for this. I’ll probably make some stickers to cover birthdays, events and doodles and change them to something more appropriate. I’m still using the actual calendar to track things that may affect my eating or exercise. I’m hoping that’ll help me with meal planning and class booking.
I kicked this off in October and so this was my first week. As the headers are so small I decided to make side headers instead.
As you can see my meal planning didn’t exactly match what I ate! The top is for all the food I eat each day with stickers to add a bit of colour. Veggie stickers are used when I eat 4 portions of fruit and veg in a day. I also have some cute lunch bag stickers for when I take food in for work, rather than buying it. I then add in other stickers for bought coffees and cookies to try and shame me into not doing it!
The middle is for exercise and rather than just writing in what activity I do I want to use this space to log everything I do during that activity. If it’s climbing I’ll make a note of any new routes or problems I’ve completed. If it’s the gym I’ll write how long I did cardio for, how many reps/sets for each exercise etc.
The bottom box I use primarily for food related to dos and my calorie intake for the day. This is the box that keeps changing the most. Some weeks I write my total water intake, others I write if I’m feel unwell at all (partly so I can see if it’s food related).
Is it working?
Actually, so far so good. I’m using this set up in conjunction with My Fitness Pal to log all my calories. I’ve lost 1kg in 6 weeks so far. I’m not aiming to lose weight quickly, so this is a fine pace for me. I’ve logged every single day and while the detail each week has varied, I have used it every day.Some weeks have been pretty and filled with stickers, others have been pen only but they’ve been filled nonetheless.
So back to that review…
I really love this planner. The discs get in the way when I want to write sometimes but the pages are super easy to pop out. You can also take the pages out multiple times and they don’t seem to get tatty or damaged. Because the paper is so lovely and thick I don’t have to rest the paper I take out onto anything to write on it nicely.
The discs are what I was most worried about with this planner but I’m really happy with how they feel. They’re not as sturdy as a coil but the benefits of moving the pages around far outweighs any concern I have.
I’m really happy I bought this planner. It’s working out great as a health/fitness planner and as it evolves I will do a follow up post. Due to the size I don’t think I’ll ever replace my Filofax with this but it is great as a second planner.
Those new Happy Planner stickers by the way? They are well on their way now, starting with Winter and Christmas kits! Keep an eye out on my Instagram for the first peek of them and release dates.