After completing my undergraduate degree, I transitioned from a flexible schedule to the life of a busy graduate student in school full time, interning during the day and waitressing at night. Suddenly, I had no time to dedicate to working out and maintaining my fitness was becoming a challenge. As someone who not only looks to exercising as a way to stay in shape, but also a stress reliever, I was determined to figure out how to fit fitness into my life.
Enter social media: during my undergraduate career I was a user of Twitter and Facebook, but only recently joined Instagram and the blogosphere. As it turns out, the combination of all four of these social media platforms was exactly what I needed to introduce me to workout routines, food recipes, and motivational tools that fit into my new busy lifestyle.
I was introduced to great blogs including the workout group The November Project who works out at 6:30am throughout Boston, and began participating in their weekly workouts. Other friends showed me great links to Instagram and Twitter accounts that showed motivational pictures and routines. For me, it truly makes a difference, to see healthy food pictures, and motivational sayings on my live feeds (Twitter, Insagram, Facebook).
To demonstrate how these platforms have helped me in these three areas, I’ve listed a sampling from each social media platform that I use on a daily basis.
Category: Motivation & Workout Routines
Unlike any other social media platform, Instagram is based solely on the sharing of pictures (and now short videos). This makes it perfect for users to share their workout routines, healthy food choices, and fitness/weight loss progress. Similar to Twitter, users can have accounts for a wide range of purposes, and many use their pages as a way to share their own health and fitness challenges with others. In this way, Instagram allows its users to create their own communities.
- Fitmotivation: This page posts motivational quotes, transformational pictures, and reminds its users of the benefits of working out.
- Workoutroutine: Looking for a monthly workout challenge or quick 15 minute workout routine? This account posts pictures and videos of specific workout moves to demonstrate the correct and safe way to complete the routine.
- GymFlow100: this is the account for a health and fitness blog that inspires its followers through comical postings, transformational pictures, and motivational quotes from its signature clothing line.
Category: Workout routines & Food Recipes
There are an immense number of great food blogs and fitness websites out there, blogs are a great way for individuals to share their own fitness challenges and struggles and relate more personally to their followers. The following two websites I go to on a daily basis for inspiration.
- The November Project: this is the website for a “grassroots workout tribe” that gathers and completes intense workouts Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 6:30am in Boston. What’s amazing about this group is its ability to stay as a community even when over 500 people show up to a workout. The blog gives advice on staying warm during winter month training, members’ reflections on the impact of the November Project, and workout challenges. If you’re looking for some interesting reading material, and/or intense and challenging workout routine, I would highly recommend taking the plunge and attending one of these workouts.
- My Fitness Pal: This free website posts recipes for its users, and also is a great platform to track your fitness goals through calorie counting and weight goals. Two other great aspects are that this site will link up with some activity trackers like Fit Bit to track the calories expended and consumed; additionally, the site offers a community feature where users can share their challenges and accomplishments with others across the site.
Category: Food Recipes
Since many people link their twitter accounts with their blogs, Facebook and Instagram pages, Twitter is the ideal place to see a quick 140 character post about a food recipe on someone’s blog without reading their blog post. It allows users to decide if they want to read further about the recipe with one quick look.
- @EatingBirdFood: posts about fitness, nutrition and great healthy recipes
- @tspbasil: a dietician and food blogger that tweets links to healthy and equally important, delicious recipes
There are so many great social media platforms out there to motivate and inspire fitness users, and sometimes Facebook seems like it’s a second thought. However, Facebook is still the most used platform, and therefore should not be forgotten as a great way to stay connected to the fitness community.
- FemaleGymMotivation: like many of the motivational fitness accounts, this page is a great tool specifically for women to use for quotes, fitness pictures, and workout tips