It’s important to remember that fitness professionals are… well, fitness professionals.
They place huge emphasis on their training and nutrition, many of them defining themselves by gym prowess, numbers on the bar, or the amount of ab veins they have – and they’re not shy about flaunting it on social media as a highlight reel of pictures and video.
Again, though, it’s important to remember that they’re professionals. And they put this emphasis on these things, and define themselves in these ways, because they can.
The amount of work and effort it takes to get into that shape is played down – and this culture of talking about the results without focusing on the process is only making gyms and trainers more intimidating than they should be.
The gym is a place that really ought to be welcoming to everyone, especially those who could benefit from it most – but this is narcissistic, boastful and amounts to nothing more than online peacocking.
Worse again, it’s all paraded as being inspirational or motivational.
And yet, if I want to learn to swim I don’t really want to see videos and pictures of the instructor jumping off the 10m board with somersaults and half twists in his speedos, when I’m afraid of the water to begin with.
With a fitness industry that’s becoming more and more elitist, destroying any real expectation of what’s achievable in terms of body composition, are we really going to make the changes we need to make, towards a more healthy society?
If all of this sounds a little depressing know that it’s written to help you avoid travelling down the wrong road and choosing the right one.
Find a sustainable plan with both training and nutrition that you can stick to.
Find a gym or trainer that’s welcoming, approachable and can devise a plan to fit your lifestyle – but most of all, know that dramatic results are possible but they’re a consequence of time and hard work.
There’s no way around that.
And finally, if you need a dose of how most people feel about the gym you might just be better off swapping #fitspo for Adele…
getting ready... pic.twitter.com/MyNwveeKoj
— Adele (@Adele) January 6, 2016
Colin McEndoo is a fitness instructor and personal trainer with Body Health and Fitness, Sandyford.