How Social Media Ties Into Your Fitness Routines.

Posted by Beth Hartman

It used to be that people turned to a friend or family member to get the support and motivation they needed when looking to improve their health and fitness. Maybe they hired a personal trainer. Some joined local weight-loss groups. Or joined a fitness club so they could be around people of like minds to keep themselves motivated.

Now instead, they go On-Line and Hookup!

Social media can be a great tool on your fitness journey. Sometimes, friends and family may not understand the struggles you have with weight loss or making it to the gym three times a week. But someone across the country, a person you’ve never met before just might – mainly because they’re going through the same struggles. That’s probably one of the greatest things about social media, it can hook you up across thousands of miles to people that have the same interests and problems that you have yourself, you are finally NOT alone.

But you have to be smart if you’re using social media to stay accountable. No one wants to be that annoying fitness friend posting round the clock about their last workout or what’s going in this week’s meal prep.

Of course, you can still find the motivation you need from social media and keep your current friends and family in the process. Consider these dos and don’ts when posting about health and fitness:

Food pictures

Do post a photo if you find a great meal or expansive dining options when you go out to eat. Be sure to include the name of the restaurant and an ingredient list so your followers can add it to their list of healthy places to check out.

Don’t document every meal. Trust me, nobody wants to see the five or six meals you are eating every day. Instead, use an app to combine the pictures into a collage and list all the foods in one post.

Do show pictures of foods that you prepare at home that are healthy. Include the recipe in case someone else wants to give it a try.

Don’t post pictures of your successful meal prep for the week, then throw in a snide comment about how you can’t believe other people don’t take the time to do the same. It doesn’t help you to make others feel bad.  Remember, you need to be comparing apples to apples. Not everyone may have the same schedule as you do for prep time.

Workout details and results

Join online social groups that use the same fitness tools as you. It’s a great way to participate in fitness challenges and compare your results with others. These groups depending on what devices they use are able to let you upload your training regimen via a Blue Tooth enabled device so that they can not only see your progress but also have the capability to plot your training course and offer supportive comments on the same, and vice versa.

Don’t assume everyone needs to know all the details of your workout. You may be trying to motivate others, but if all you are doing is posting about your fitness successes, you may be alienating others who are more limited because of jobs, family obligations or finances. Just because you exercise every day doesn’t mean everyone else can too. Make a point of spelling this out to your group of exercise buddies and tell them to post maybe their own frustrations on how limited they are in pursuing their own workout schedules and maybe offer recommendations around their obstacles. This will only help to cement the fitness relationship you are building up together.

Be proud of your results when you hit important milestones, this is a cause to celebrate. Celebrate that personal best on a run, attempting heavier weights or fitting in a certain number of workouts in a month. Reaching these kind of achievable fitness goals can inspire others to give it a shot.

Don’t post that you have worked out 100 days in a row. For most people, that’s not possible and it’s probably not the kind of message that’s going to get someone else off the couch. Rather provide a method that makes working out a little easier to achieve more consecutive workout days!

Fitness Selfies

Some people will post before and after pictures that are tasteful. It can be hard to see old pictures of yourself, but these kind of posts let others know what it is possible – especially if your weight loss was attained in a healthy way. This will also show others that you are being honest in your posts and are proud of the results your fitness regimen is producing.

Show off that new outfit that flaunts your progress. If your new fitness routine now makes it possible for you to fit into your old jeans, then by all means show it off. That is motivating – for you and your loved ones. And yes, compliments feel good, too.

Don’t post pictures of yourself half-naked unless you are prepared to find yourself with a bunch of new followers and maybe even a few stalkers. One idea to keep in mind on self-posting,: make sure your mother would approve of the picture before you post it.

We all love being motivated and inspiring others can make your own exercising routines more meaningful, but remember moderation also matters when it comes to fitness posts on social media. Post too many and you may actually wind up with fewer followers or worse. We did say moderation is the “KEY” keep in mind how you feel when you get that unexpected post to your page. Helpful fitness thoughts and posting progress can help make your followers look forward to your posts, and turn-about is fair play.

Take advantage of how social media can help to keep you motivated and track your progress and be aware that what you post out there……… Stays out there for ALL to see.

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