If any of you are like me and read the Mail Online religiously (as I wake and before I go to sleep, and sometimes a few times a day… I know what you’re thinking), you may have seen this morning’s article:
If not – you can read it here.
After launching Healthy Selfie 2 weeks ago, this left me feeling pretty hot under the collar and hence, I felt obliged to present the other side of this argument – for once, giving ‘fitspiration’ the credit it’s due! Sometimes I feel we punish people completely unfairly if they want to flaunt the fruits of their labour, branding them ‘fat-shamers’, ‘shameless’ or ‘self-obsessed’ (which granted, some are – but they are by no means the majority!). I give you Abby Pell (@superabs for those of you looking for some #fitspo yourself) who was trolled for posting this picture on her Instagram account:
She’s had a kid, she works bloody hard and her daughter thinks she’s Wonder Woman… Yet we hurl abuse.
Eating disorders are an extremely serious condition that are most certainly not to be taken lightly. To suggest, however, that taking ‘selfies’ is exacerbating this problem on such an enormous scale, is completely contradictory to the content that has been flooding our database since we launched.
People from around the world have been documenting their progress within our app by taking progress photos. It’s quick, it’s easy and any good personal trainer will tell you they encourage their clients to do so throughout their training programme. It also detracts from peoples’ obsession with a number on the scales which is often completely meaningless and not reflective of true progress.
Some of our users are looking to lose weight, others are looking to gain weight, some are tracking their physical shape in the run up to competitive fitness events and some are even tracking their baby bumps… Not mentioning any names. People of all ages, shapes and sizes are sharing their journeys with other like-minded individuals because the support within the Healthy Selfie community is so amazing. We have created a socially acceptable platform for everyone to share the successes and failures of their fitness journey and their quest for a healthier life (note: healthier, NOT ‘skinnier’).
There are both good and bad sides to the ‘selfie’, and they will forever divide opinion. We here at Healthy Selfie would never condone the use of photos to fuel extreme and dangerous mental health conditions. We see them as a simple and effective tool to track your transformation to a fitter, healthier you – no more, no less, and used in the right way they can be a powerful source of motivation and incredible inspiration to others. From the feedback we’ve received from our current users – we don’t think we’re alone in this train of thought.
Hopefully some of you will read this and appreciate what I’m getting at. And, in the words of @superabs – “Be happy, be healthy and empower others to feel the same”…. And download the App now if you haven’t!