It seems there are two types of people in the world of social media:
1) Those who like to update us on every single minute of their day, no matter how personal, intimate, or mundane the details may be.
2) Everyone else.
It’s the first category that often makes the second category hesitant to share anything at all. We don’t want to be person #1; we don’t want to bore or annoy our friends with information that is of no use to them. We certainly don’t want to brag or sound obnoxious. And because of this, we sometimes hesitate to share updates or accomplishments because even though they may be important to us, we fear they are not at all important to our friends, family, and acquaintances.
And we don’t want to be THAT social media person.
For example: You just finished a super hard workout. Truth be told, you didn’t even want to go to the gym in the first place, because you had a bad day at work and have a boatload of housework you should be doing instead of working out. But you went to the gym anyway, and you managed to not only have a great workout, but set a deadlift PR that you’ve been struggling for months to overcome. Months! And you want to scream it from the rooftops…or the 21st-century version of screaming from the rooftops: post a status update declaring your accomplishment to the world. But you fear that your friends and family care just as much about your gym session as they care about what brand of wheat bread you used to make your turkey sandwich that afternoon.
Or worse, you fear that someone will take your post as–gasp!–bragging.
Listen, I can understand your hesitations. I too have rolled my eyes at more “here’s the 100th update telling you I’m at work and I’m bored” status updates than I care to admit. But when it comes to sharing your workouts on social media, my opinion is always “go for it,” regardless of what others might think. And here’s why:
1) Accountability. Yes, this one is self-serving. But it is your social media page after all. Why not use it to benefit you? Getting into a regular routine of posting your workouts will help hold you accountable for what you’ve done (or haven’t done) to improve your training. This is especially true when other people start taking notice of when you do, or do not, post your workouts. Further, posting that you plan to go for a run, then sharing your post-run stats might be just the motivation you need to get out the door and get your workout done on a day when you might otherwise feel like staying home on the couch.
2) You never know who you might encourage. People are watching you, probably closer than you realize. This fact is equal parts cool and creepy. A friend you might not have talked to in years may see your daily workout updates and think to herself “if she can do it…I can find the time to do it as well!” Let’s face it: a large majority of our society is overweight and inactive. If your workout posts encourage just one person to change their sedentary lifestyle and improve their health, then sharing is totally worth it. It sounds cheesy and perhaps trite, but your post may turn into motivation that could literally save a life. For me, knowing that I could motivate someone to change their life far outweighs the risk of annoying my friends.
3) You deserve to brag. Call me boastful, but I truly believe this. Training for a half marathon or a marathon is no joke. Actually, training for any sort of race that is farther/faster/harder than you’ve done before is no joke. It takes dedication and hard work. Further, as I mentioned above, inactivity is a huge problem in our society. Good for you for taking a stance against it and trying to better your health.
The point is, you should be proud of what you’ve done, and those who truly care about you will be proud of you as well. Those who feel you are shamelessly bragging by posting your accomplishments are likely the same people who feel their own shame and insecurities for not trying to pursue their own dreams.
Don’t let those types of people bring you down or negate your hard work.
OK, let me be honest for a minute: Yes, you probably are annoying some of your friends by posting your workout and racing updates. But the great thing about social media and technology is that those people have the ability to block those “annoying” posts from their view. Just like you have the ability to block game requests or that one friend who posts fifteen pictures a day of her cat sleeping in various positions. But for every friend who is annoyed by your workout posts, there are twice as many friends cheering you on through their keyboards and behind their computer screens. So be proud of your hard work, hold your head high, and run hard.
Then be sure to let us know about it on Facebook.