A strange trend has gained surprising popularity on the Internet these days: people who previously had nothing to do with physical activity now suddenly change their lifestyle completely and become sports freaks. Everything would be fine if not for the sudden flood of facebook's, youtube's or other media's notifications of photos showing "the shape". Ok, it's great that you are active, that you eat healthily, that you quit smoking, you have started to run, walk or fight extra kilos... but do you want to inspire pity in people who deal with this for several years and do not show off with their achievements on every page they can find?
You should definitely read:7 deadly gym sins
You start running, great! But you don't necessarily need:
- specialised shoes with multiple systems for different types of surface,
- the most expensive and best multi-layered thermoactive clothes,
- waterproof GPS receiver with heart rate monitor,
- specialised carbohydrate gels and sport drinks for runners,
- tens of nutrients and supplements for use before, during and after exercise,
- specialised runners-dedicated components of compression clothing.
At the beginning all you need is ordinary, simple, cheap shoes (eg. Asics, even for less than 50 EUR, the least fussy person can choose a pair from the nearest shop), plain tracksuit, cheap thermoactive shirt and mineral water. In fact, gadgets and mega-specialised "inventions" would be useful only to a handful of professional athletes.
You work out at the gym? Very well, but is it the right time to show your bulky muscles to the whole world? Recently I saw a photo of a neophyte-athlete on Facebook. And what could I see: substantial pot belly hanging over his trousers as you could see in the mirror: a silhouette of a person who based his diet mainly on fast food and sweetened drinks, and who has not heard about the reduction diet yet. It's decidedly too early for a "debut" on the social networking sites. It was a friend of the menioned man who showed me the photos with a wry smile. He added that this individual literally bombards Facebook with daily updates of his new hobby motivating to train (in a free and ironic translation: "train hard or go home," "blood, sweat and tears", "no pain, no gain", "a real animal", "work out like you were a Satan if you want to see heaven in the mirror", etc.). Equally often you can see men with many years of experience in training but... extremely obese ones ("gainers' lovers" "Michelin man"). In addition, their faces clearly indicate the use of excessive amounts of anabolic-androgenic steroids ("sun-like face" - visible water retention). Actually, such "bodybuilders" in clothes look morbidly obese. They publish photos of their "summer form", but the first question that pops to your mind is: "When do you expect delivery?". Ok, fine, you train, but before you show off with anything on social media think if your body fat level is closer to 8% or 18%. Podgy curves, unfortunately, have little to do with bodybuilding. Maybe it's time for fat reduction and aerobic and interval training?
Equally tiresome and burdensome for Facebook users are automatic updates for example from Endomondo. Every now and then you can read that for instance "Becky strolled for 2 kms and cycled for 8." Ok, that's great that you are active but again: is such small distance a good reason reason to announce your "achievements" to the world? Yes, this option, which automatically puts the recording of your physical activity to the web, can be turned off in the settings.
Summary: There is nothing wrong with training. More than that, without a proper training diary it is very difficult to determine the source of errors, reasons for stagnation, causes of overload, pain or injury associated with physical exertion. But is Facebook (or any similar service) the perfect place for that purpose? In most cases, information posted by training neophytes are simply tiring for people forced to watch such data. It's similar to the continuous updated information on current events, trips, pictures of new cars, hundreds of photos of children and so on. Many people also complain about the flood of images of meals, of absolutely every food you eat. Ok, one or two photos of your favorite meal or snack are ok, but dozens of photos - every day ?! It will make even the most impassive person go mad! On the net you can also come across hundreds of photos of people who work very hard in the gym but... with their phones in their hands. Then they begin to question the lack of training effect. Well, checking on Facebook every few minutes does not necessarily translate into the desired intensity and "density" of a training session. Such a training is more like a stretched in time lazy aerobic interval. The same principle applies to morbidly talkative persons who perform hard work on their biceps: continuous curl of the biceps brachii while pressing the latest version of a smartphone to their ear. Texting? The same principle!
Prescription: leave your phone at home, devote 60 minutes for a training and scrupulously follow the assumed rest breaks between sets. Don't force your pals to enjoy hundreds of information about physical activity, sophisticated descriptions of plans and workout routines. If you want to, get a training log on a dedicated portal. You run? Excellent, keep records, gain knowledge - do not torture your friends with thousands of articles related to your new hobby.