I’ve been looking forward to this article for a while mostly because I love fitness, am a fitness professional, and enjoy using IG both for personal and professional reasons.
Instagram and Fitness sit at this interesting cross-section of a social media platform centered around imagery and an industry primarily focused on visual appearance.
It’s like they were made for one another.
And while there is a lot of good that comes from this pairing it has also allowed some of the worst parts of the fitness industry to thrive and excel.
There is definitely a group of fitness professionals who are leveraging Instagram in a positive way.
They are sharing evidenced-based information aimed at helping people achieve their goals, actively engaging with their community, and providing all kinds of value by answering questions.
Unfortunately, in my opinion, this is the minority.
The dominant presence of fitness on instagram seems to be largely attractive men and women who have always been in great shape or got themselves into great shape using a particular approach to exercise and food and are now selling nutrition and exercise programs to other people based on their own success.
Basically that amounts to a bunch of uncredentialed and uneducated individuals giving advice to others on how to care for their health and wellness.
That seems like a sketchy situation, but hey I’m just some dude with a couple certifications, a biochemistry degree, and seven years of experience helping people achieve their goals.
Sure the sketchy information and expertise is bad, but this presence on instagram also distorts for a lot of people what it actually means to be fit and healthy.
It leaves you with the impression that you need to have a six-pack, a thigh-gap, and perfectly matched clothing in order to finally be in “the club.”
When the truth is the majority of these people on instagram are gifted with great genetics and a 10 year head start.
Which is why it’s no surprise that so many people end up purchasing a program, following a diet, or investing in a supplement that ultimately gets them nowhere.
What this all means for you is that it can be extremely difficult to identify quality information on how to achieve your health and fitness goals and even more difficult to identify realistic and attainable goals.
That is why I felt the need to write this piece.
I want you to know that what you see scrolling through your instagram feed crammed with fitspiration is not fitness or health.
Fitness and health is what you define it to be for you.
If that is in fact a achieving a single digit body fat % like your favorite instagram chick or bro that is totally cool too.
Once you have defined that goal for yourself you have to start having a discussion about what is will take to achieve that goal and be realistic about it.
You are not going to go from never having stepped in a gym in your life before to the next mr or ms. olympia in 12 weeks no matter what that IG celeb says about their signature plan.
Achieving your goal is going to take time, effort, persistence, learning, and a lot of patience.
If you ever want help with identifying a more specific plan for accomplishing your goals don’t hesitate to send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Happy moving and heavy lifting!
Practical, Purposeful, Effective Training