Have you ever posted a workout selfie? Or maybe thought about it, but didn’t follow through? Maybe you were a visitor to a new gym and just loved the lighting in their locker room. Or maybe you had a particularly social-media worthy training session in an outfit you loved.
Workout selfies can be a really great part of your health journey. They can help motivate you, provide accountability, and keep you on track. Unfortunately, there can be some stigma about workout selfies. Researchers in London shared an article describing their research, which found that people who brag about their diets, exercise, and accomplishments on Facebook are typically narcissists.
Whoa, ouch! We see far more benefits of gym selfies that surpass any possible annoyance followers may have after seeing running route maps or muscle-flexing pics. In fact, there are a few solid reasons why we actually encourage our members to share gym selfies and other photos of their personal journey, that have nothing to do with pushing gym visits and check-ins. It’s all about actually succeeding, supporting, and hopefully celebrating their goals, big and small.
6 Reasons to Post Gym Selfies
1. It Takes a Village
It’s hard to get started. And to keep going! But letting others know about your goals and what you plan on doing to reach them is a great first step. That’s because it’s much harder to back out of a plan (however tempting!) when you’ve told hundreds of your Facebook friends that you’ve decided to do it. Sharing information about your fitness journey will help you stay motivated to take action!
2. Get a Boost
The struggle is real. And daily. We all have tough choices facing us every day regarding how to spend our time and what to put into our bodies. Posting a photo or providing a status update about your experience is bound to get likes and comments, which provide a jolt of encouragement that will make your next choices even easier. Because let’s be honest, compliments are fun, and our brains love the attention! Let those kind Instagram comments boost your self-esteem and inspire you to run a little farther on the treadmill, sweat a little more, or push your muscles even harder. Your friends can be your workout partners without even training at the gym!
3. Give a Boost
You never really know everything that’s happening in others’ lives, certainly not outside your immediate friend and family network. But social media pages have a reach and influence on daily lives that has positive effects outside of visible likes, comments, and shares. Seeing pictures, videos or content of your results might just be what someone needs to get moving, or keep going. Progress is encouraging. Success is motivating. And yes, it can even be peer pressure. But if your sweaty selfie can have a positive effect on even one person, helping them to make a healthier choice, it’s worth it!
And here’s an important point to remember: the fitness inspiration we’re flooded with is unrealistic. We’ll see ads on our Instagram feed full of women and men with six-pack abs and hulking muscles, taking pictures in rooms with huge windows and perfect lighting, lifting insane amounts of weight with perfect form or eating incredibly healthy food. For a lot of us, that image is totally unrealistic, and it can be hard to remember that those ads and images are often filtered and taken by fitness models with makeup artists. Seeing a real-life, unfiltered health journey – and particularly, seeing someone’s progress over several months – can help reset someone else’s expectations of what they can accomplish!
4. See How Far You’ve Come
There’s nothing more satisfying than a great before and after. But how does that happen? With documentation! Sure, you could keep those photos to yourself, but similar to a yearbook or baby book, it’s fun to look back, share memories with others, and see evidence of the people, places, and activities that got you to where you are today. Some people even like to share progress selfies every week, so that they have in-order evidence of how their hard work is paying off.
So go ahead, show off that confidence or accomplishment to friends and family, and reach out for support as often as you want. (And include #AnytimeFitness so we can see them and share to encourage others!) Isn’t that connection to your community what Facebook is for?
5. Show Off Your Coach
Do you have an amazing personal trainer who’s been part of your story for months? Who has made a huge difference in your performance by helping you improve your form, lift more weight, or find your purpose? Why not thank them? If your trainer is OK with it, grab your device or a selfie stick and smile – for an image that will remind you both of the effort you put in! We’re sure they’ll be excited to celebrate their client.
Instagram caption = Thanks Coach! 💜
6. Because You Can
And you should!
How to Take the Perfect Gym Selfie
If you’ve never taken a workout selfie, but you’re feeling inspired, we’ve got your back! Men and women have different preferences when creating their selfie content, but here’s some helpful information and a few things to consider for all.
Taking a gym selfie is just like taking a regular selfie – you’ll want to make sure you have good lighting so that there aren’t shadows hiding your face! We recommend finding a spot in your gym with big windows. Some people prefer the brightness of artificial light, and will take their selfie in the bathroom or locker room. This way you can also check your reflection in the mirror, or even use your reflection to take your selfie! You can test out the lighting and shadows in a few different environments to decide what works best for you.
The background of your gym selfie is an important part of the content. You’ll want to think about the room you’re in and what the camera is showing. Maybe you want to angle your device’s camera so that your selfie includes a few inspiring words or messages from the gym wall. If you’re focused on weight lifting, pose by the weight rack, or if you just completed a functional training session, use whatever props reflect your health journey best. You can also get clever with a mirror to show all the muscle you’re building, front and back. Whatever you’re working toward, your workout selfie is an opportunity to show it!
Who said your selfie has to be a static image? Why not make it an action shot (or an action minute) and show everyone what you’ve been working on? If there’s a specific movement or weight amount you’ve been working toward for months, and have finally reached, show how proud you are with a short video of yourself performing it! If you don’t have a selfie stick, or if the move requires two hands, you can kindly request that a trainer or workout buddy film you on your device (or spot you, if that’s the case). Then, share the video to your preferred platform (whether that’s Facebook, Snapchat or Instagram Stories) and feel proud of what you’ve accomplished!
The last thing to remember is that the purpose of sharing a workout selfie is to make yourself feel proud, celebrate your abilities, and stay motivated. Don’t let your mind get hung up on the response you’ll receive – just be proud of how far you’ve come, and that you’re committed to continuing your fitness journey!