Is Social Media Ruining the Fitness Industry?

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Is this a rant? Kind of.

We’ve all seen those insanely shredded, jacked up and perpetually pumped fitness folk with quotes like,“Your only competition is yourself” or “Harness the Power  – Conquer,”  and touting a bottle of BCAA’s. Then, there are the overly made up, contoured, false eyelashes and all, glamour shots with the side pose-glutes-out-ridiculousness.

Apparently everyone these days is a physique model with a sponsorship. – spoiler alert – or perhaps just a Canon EOS 7D Mark II. And one more thing, (scratching head) how have some managed to accumulate 250 + followers?

What’s even more astounding are the sky-high prices – no joke – being offered for Online Training.(But still have gmail accounts?)

Things that make you go hmm.

Let’s just dispel one thing – no, they are not all organic followers. So, into spam they go.

To scroll or not to scroll

That is the question. It’s called feed scrolling syndrome and it’s legit. That being said, social media has provided us with a way to constantly occupy ourselves, aimlessly going through picture after picture. As I see it, this really is no genius creation. Back in the day we called them photo albums.

The big difference here is that after taking the pictures and anxiously awaiting for them to be developed, we compiled them in an album for display.

According to goodtherapy.org “Young people turn to Instagram, Facebook, and texts to communicate and find a sense of belonging, which can lead to unrealistic expectations of happiness, a decrease in empathy, false presentations of self, and possibly isolation.” 

There is a huge difference between doing something to get attention and getting attention doing something. Fuggedabout the apps with filters and the ability to cleverly adjust shadows, contrasts, structure, and brightness.

So, sans the perfect overhead lighting, angle and filter, let’s get to the real meat and potatoes shall we?

Instant Fitness

Working out isn’t a glamorous activity. Nor should it be, really. You work up a sweat, or at least you are supposed to. I don’t know for sure but mascara in the eye doesn’t seem like it would be pleasurable. And do we really need to see another transformation pic? I don’t mean to get things twisted on this, I applaud the hard-work.

When I think back to my early twenties and leaner than a walking boneless chicken breast, I had one thing on my mind and that was to build muscle. I poured over magazines, books, and asked everyone I could for advice and those magic tips that would help me get the results I was after. Now we call them “Gains.”

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Every gym has a mayor. You know, those peacocks who strut around lats’ flared, like they own the place. Except they don’t – they pay a monthly membership fee to be there just like you and me. They like to regal us all with their knowledge. I would ask anyone I could for pointers and ways to get elected mayor just like them. I listened, took the knowledge I thought was relevant, and moved on. I met people in the process too. It’s called social interaction. One day I walked in and people noticed changes. There was no need to say anything. Results speak for themselves.

Over time, I began to see results. But not without hard work, sweat, determination, and most of all patience. Once I left the gym exhausted, went into the parking lot and puked. I had worked my ass off that day. On one hand I was miserable, and on the other proud. I pushed myself to the limit. This was long before social media, however, and I wouldn’t have felt the need to let people know any way. Particularly not with a clever one-liner. It was what it was.

The Takeaway 

With age comes wisdom. First, we should never compare ourselves to others. Ever. We are all individuals with our own genetic makeup. Second, is progress easy? Hell no. Nothing is. When you see the memes about the summit, don’t forget about the mountain. Nothing is instant and results take time. Instead of “transformations” we should be focusing on how to get there. Ways and techniques on how to achieve those results. I applaud the short videos on demonstrating technique. And some of them showing how creative a person can get with standard attachments are down right brilliant.

But honestly, what’s with the hair styling videos? I thought you where a “Fitness Model.”   

And just for the record to some of the youngsters: We older folk who have been around in more than our fair share of gyms, know the signs and symptoms of, shall we say, someone who isn’t natty. If in fact that word still means natural.

We know what to recognize. (Insert emoticon winking) So, please stop doing what I believe is a major disservice, and telling people its natural gain – when it isn’t. Just come clean with everyone.

Many will probably still follow you.

Hitting the gym on days the sofa calls out, following a nutrition plan designed specifically around your goals, and sticking to it, and continuous hard work, dedication, and sweat pays off. Really, it does. Not everyone aspires to be a physique competitor. We should all aspire to be stronger, healthier versions of ourselves though. 

And so, all rants eventually must come to an end.  Before you go scrolling through inspirational memes again, keep this word in mind: Realness.

For more realness email:

jwilliamstrains@gmail.com

6 AM – 8 PM Monday – Saturday

By Appointment

 

“Where you’re headed is more important than how fast you’re going”

3 Reasons Why Workout Journals Will Help You

GOALS

“Proper Preperation Prevents Poor Performance” – Charlie Batch

We’re all in it to win it, right? Strength. Health. Prosperity. Goals. It’s no secret exercise and physical fitness will help get us there faster.

TMI

Here in the “Information Age,” we are deluged daily with news, updates, ads, pop-ups, and a barrage of stuff we definetly could have done without. (Why the fish gape selfie, I just don’t know) With practicly everything we’d ever want to know at our fingertips, knowledge is power. But sifting through it all can be exhausting. I know I am constantly learning what to keep and file away, and what to simply block out.

Our own data 

I do like my stats and statistics. When it comes to working out, I don’t like my data up in the clouds. I like it right in front of me. Workout logs are beneficial for several reasons. If I had to offer a thesis I’d narrow it down:

3 Reasons Why Workout Journals Will Help You

Goals

1. Take the guess work out. 

Going to the grocery store list in hand, I know exactly what I need and can breeze in and out with relatively no issues. The gym is no exception.

I like to know exactly what my workout will be each session. Allowing for busy, peak times (Yes, “How many more sets do you have?” is annoying) the order of the workout may vary, but at least I have a clear idea of what the mish is.

2. Benchmark yourself

Just like I do for every client, I detail my own progress. With the last week’s rep counts and the projected counts, you have a clear way to see what to beat. And it’s not the “Bruh” next to you. Focus on you.

Goals

Arnold Schwarzeneggar once said, “The last 3 or 4 reps is what makes the muscles grow.”  So keep track of them.

3. Staying focused

Let’s be honest, keeping our “eye on the prize” all the time ain’t always that easy. Perhaps for some highly skilled, lasered – focused overachievers it is. But for some of us amongst the general populace, we need all the help we can get.

I still use loose leaf, 1 subject notebooks kept in a worn out binder. I don’t know call me old school, but it works. I have plenty of room for “notes to self.”

Goals

Next time you go to workout take a pad a pen. If someone asks you what your doing, reply:

“Bench marking myself.”

 

Are you being S.M.A.R.T at the gym?

Time


We’ve all seen a fashion forward outfit on someone and thought, “That looks so smart.” Or walked into a smartly appointed room and thought, nice!

Are you being smart at the gym?

Time

Let’s take a look.

Specific What are your goals? Over the years I’ve heard them run the gamut. From, “I’m getting married and I have to get into my dress” to “The doctor told me I have to lose the weight,” and everything in between. What ever your motivations may be, you get a high-five and props from me for making fitness a part of your lifestyle. Word.

“I wanna get fit” is too vague. Have a clear idea and be focused about it. “Improve Strength and Flexibility” and it starts getting clearer.

Measurable  Let’s do the numbers. “Increase my Squat by…” “Lose 20lbs…” This involves keeping food logs and workout journals. Sites like MyFitnessPal make it extremely easy nowadays too document from day to day as they do the measuring. All you do is enter it. Smart phones are great for things other than social media.

Attainable Our favorite celebrity just prepared for a movie and hot damn look at them. We’re scrolling through feeds and oh my, look at some of the #fitfam with the 425k followers. It all gets us motivated to want to curl and squat all the day as well. We should always set the bar high. Understanding what our capabilities, schedules, and lifestyles all are is equally important.

Be realistic. 

Yes, your abs can pop. We all have abdominal muscles. Do you naturally have an 8 pack like some genetically gifted instagramers? Prob not. Focus on you.

Relevant “Appropriate to the current time, period, or circumstance” I use the textbook definition here so that there is no misunderstanding. This is about you, not what somebody else wants or thinks you should look like.

Time

Timely Setting aside time, and I believe equally as important, a time frame, is key. We construct business plans with time frames and office projects with deadlines. Fitness goals are no different. “30 days from now….” “60 days from now…..” 90 days from now…..” You get the picture.

Time

Be S.M.A.R.T

 

6AM – 8PM Monday – Saturday

By Appointment