5 Things Fitness Influencers Don’t Want You to Know | Erin Stern

June 17, 2020

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As the increase in online influencers rises so does our perception of what we need to look like, buy, and be.  Erin Stern is here to tell you the reality so you don’t buy into the gimmicks.

In the last few years, there has been an increase in the amount of people who call themselves fitness influencers. This is a blanket term that defines a range from fitness expert all the way to the girl or guy who, perhaps competed or perhaps has no experience as a competitive or professional athlete, and is now offering programs, fit teas, or endorsing quick fix products.

Of course, there are many legitimate sources of information on social media. But there are also many very poor and unreliable sources of info, and products that should certainly be avoided. The goal of this blog is to help you recognize the tricks that are used, in hopes that you will be able to steer clear of bad info and products. I hope that it helps you to recognize their “candid” photos vs. carefully curated and edited shots. It should also encourage you to look deeper into an influencer’s credentials and reviews before purchasing anything. 

Most importantly, it should show you that YOU hold the yardstick that measures success, happiness, and progress. Don’t compare your blooper reel to someone else’s highlight reel! You, my friends, are amazing!

Here are the 5 things that fitness influencers don’t want you to know:

1.  Pics DO NOT reflect real life

Very few people, if any, are super lean year-round. Influencers will diet down a few times per year and schedule their photo shoots around this time. This way, they always have impressive content to post year-round. As women especially, we need a little body fat. When looking at candid photos, it’s important to realize they are anything but candid! From the dozens of photos taken, one might make the cut. A lot of time and takes go into capturing it. 

2. Influencers use of angles, flexing, spray tan, lighting

Check out my impressive transformation! Oh wait, it’s just a picture of me un-flexed vs. flexed. If you look carefully, you’ll be able to notice the tension in the muscles in the flexed pic. Angles are incredibly useful for accentuating certain muscle groups or minimizing others. For example, glutes look tremendous when they’re pushed closer to the camera. Waists look small when turned to the side and pulled away from the camera. Spray tans can really accentuate the muscles and make someone look much leaner in minutes. Lighting can either make the muscles pop, or it can “wash out” any imperfections on a person’s face.

3. Influencers use FaceTune and Photoshop

We all want to be at our best, and I think we should be. But there’s a difference between creating flattering angles and using an app to augment or adjust features! Check out celebface on IG for great examples of this. A lot of infuencers will use editing apps such as Facetune to slim waists, enhance curves, and enhance facial features.

4. Be wary of one-size-fits-all meal plans, detox teas, and quick fixes

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a meal plan that works for everyone. You may get great results, or you may not. Our bodies naturally detox themselves, so there is no need to purchase a tea. Tea detoxes just make you lose temporary water weight, which will come right back. Quick fixes are just that – quick! Lasting results take time and work. There is no substitute for that. Research the influencer’s credentials before purchasing. I think this is very important as social media gives anyone a platform to label themselves as an “expert” or “authority”. It makes more sense to hire a reputable coach or spend the time to research meal plans for yourself. 

5. Influencers have insecurities, issues, and hang-ups – just like the rest of us

No matter how gorgeous someone is, she/he has insecurities. It’s part of being human! We all have one thing or several things we’d change about ourselves. You’ll rarely see these insecurities highlighted on social media.  Just know they are there. Our imperfections and our unique gifts make us who we are! Otherwise, we would all be boring, and life would be boring! 

Ultimately, good health is the best goal so love yourself and train hard!

  Erin Stern
, 2x Ms. Figure Olympia



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