Well, I finally made a table to track most of my PRs (personal records) in the major lifts that I do:
This table will be updated on a regular basis as I continue to break my own PRs.
I've added a few variations of the squat (low bar, high bar, and front squat) because I do them on a regular basis.
If possible, I've recorded the lift and linked it to a video to show as proof, and the date that I performed the lift.
In the future, I may add more exercises (maybe rack/mat pulls, chin ups etc), plate-plus-a-quarter rep maxes, and variations of existing exercises. I can think of splitting "Bench Press" into reverse grip bench press and regular grip bench press, and splitting "Deadlift" into conventional and sumo.
I mainly work in the 5, 3, 2, 1 rep ranges, but I've included columns for 8 and 10 reps because I'll probably get to those in the future.
This is really for me to keep my training a little more organized, and an easy way to see what my PRs are at a glance. I used to rely on my fading memory or search my own blog to find out what my previous PRs were, which was a pain in the ass. With the (growing) number of rep ranges and exercises, it was only going to get worst, so this prompted me to make this table and properly keep track of all my personal records.
Another reason why I'm putting up a list of my PRs is that some people have expressed interest in what I'm lifting, and are inspired and motivated by me hitting personal records. I know when I watch videos of other people hitting PRs, it motivates and inspires me, even if they're lifting something lower than me.
A PR is a PR no matter what the weight is, and if other people are progressing and getting stronger, that's awesome in my book.
Motivational Powers of Breaking Personal Records
I find that breaking PRs is fun, motivating and rewarding. It's also an indicator that I'm getting stronger in the lift. For example, if I hit a 5 rep max in the squat, I might be ready to get a 3 rep max. If I get a 3RM, then a new 2RM shouldn't be too far away. If the 2RM goes well, then a 1RM should be just around the corner.
When I plan on attempting a new PR of some sort, it tends to be on my mind a few days before the actual workout. Sometimes a week or so in advanced, I'm already obsessing with it. It makes me look forward to training that particular day.
If I miss the PR, then that gets under my skin, and I'm obsessing with making the lift next time around. The battle to hit that PR is already happening in my mind as I mentally rehearse the lift over and over again.
This mentality of continuously breaking person records has helped keep my training consistent, hard and have progressively made me stronger.
And I'm pretty sure I'm not alone in this. A lot of very strong people who I follow on a variety of social networks always seem to be breaking some sort of personal record (whether it's a 1RM or a repetition max) on a regular basis. Success leaves clues.
If you're not keeping track of your own personal records, maybe you should start. And then start breaking them.
This process has certainly helped me get stronger, and it'll probably help you too.