People have fairly strong reactions when the topic of gym selfies come up. Some people absolutely hate them, some love them, and some don’t see what all the fuss is about. This interesting, fitness slash social media trend began a few years ago and has only gotten more and more attention and popular. Some studies show that posting pictures of yourself at the gym could be linked to a psychological disease called narcissism while another study says that exactly the opposite- that it’s good for you. One study found that tracking and sharing your fitness progress is actually good for you, and boosts your self-esteem as well as holds yourself accountable. With all of the mixed feelings on this trend, we’re taking it upon ourselves to play devil’s advocate and give our readers why you should, and why you shouldn’t hate gym selfies.
Why you should hate gym selfies:
1. They’re obnoxious.
Most blatant and obvious, gym selfies are simply obnoxious, especially to those who don’t work out or care about fitness. It’s totally in your face and is screaming to the world “Hey look, I work out!” There’s nothing subtle about taking a picture of yourself looking ripped, flexing in a mirror, wearing beats by DRE.
2. They’re narcissistic.
Not to be totally rude and crass right now, but if you’re not good looking and totally out of shape you’re probably not going to post a picture of yourself in the gym. In other words, the main people who post gym selfies are super fit, good looking individuals who know they’re uber in shape and hot. We might sound like jealous, self-loathing assholes when we say this, but keep all that to yourself! Taking pictures of yourself at the gym makes you seem light weight obsessed with yourself. And like I mentioned earlier, there are actual studies that show that people who post gym selfies are narcissistic. The proof is in the science, people!
3. They make other people feel bad about themselves.
It’s 2016, but still not every human on the planet has a gym membership or is into working out. Some people might not care, some people might be too overweight to know where to begin, and some people might think it’s useless. Whatever the reason, people will super low self-esteem could feel like crap when they see someone fit getting their sweat on at the gym. As if they don’t see it enough just out in public in general, now they have to see it on their social media feeds. This has the potential to make self-conscious; overweight people feel worse about themselves.
4. They’re distracting.
Now, so far we’ve only talked about hating gym selfies when we see them on our social media feeds, but what about when we witness them occurring while we’re at the gym? News flash, it’s even worse. Ever been trying to find mirror space while working out, but been completely boxed out by the fitness fiends taking mirror selfies? It happens more often than you think. Imagine you’re on the treadmill or Stairmaster, trying to watch whatever is on the gym’s TV, but you can’t pay attention because all you can see is the douchebag taking pic after pic of them flexing. So annoying.
5. They’re totally cliche.
Lastly, gym selfies have become a huge cliche. The trend and the word douchebag are practically synonymous now. It’s been so overdone that it’s become a complete and utter cliche, and in society, we tend not to be a huge fan of those.
Why we should love them:
1. They’re inspiring.
There are so many fitness accounts on social media these days; it’d be impossible to follow them all. But these people have created a mass following inspiring others with their gym selfies and even videos. These images and videos usually are accompanied with captions about what workouts to do and why it will help you, and even has instructions. A lot of people find that following users who post their gym selfies inspiring because you see firsthand someone personally progressing and working hard to maintain their fitness.
2. They boost your self-esteem.
In a world that’s constantly telling us feeling good about ourselves is narcissistic, we should feel good and proud about loving our bodies enough to share it with the world. If sharing your fitness pictures with your followers make you feel good about yourself, then here’s to you, because some people need a lot worse to feel okay. Honestly, what’s so bad about wanting to show off your hard work?
3. They hold you accountable and keeps track of your progress.
Posting your fitness journey for the world to see, including gym selfies, indeed is one of the best ways to hold yourself accountable. When you’re no longer your sole audience, it makes you want to work harder to stay on track with your fitness regime. Additionally, if you’re able to inspire just one person with your pictures, that can be as rewarding as it gets.
4. They can get you involved in a fitness community.
As I mentioned before, people create social media accounts based around their fitness journeys and regimes. Because this is becoming such a huge trend, social media fitness communities are everywhere. As silly as it sounds, it’s true, people all over the internet are looking for people to connect with about fitness. In fact, social networking — including online challenges, message boards and picture sharing— is a key component of Weight Watchers, which was recently named the best weight loss plan by U.S. News & World Report.