Social media is often regarded as a toxic element of modern life and regularly draws the ire of many complaining about its time-wasting and inspiration-killing capabilities.
However, platforms such as Instagram are fast becoming motivational tools for many women to jump up off the couch and pursue improved and healthy lifestyles.
Fitness fanatic, Alana Coomer recently devoted herself to improving her lifestyle and said the motivation behind the decision stemmed from scrolling through her Instagram feed which was filled with posts from fitness bloggers such as Emily Skye, Ash Bines and Kayla Itsines.
“I was inspired by other fitness competitors I saw online, as I had quite low self-esteem in regards to my body in the past year,” the twenty-year-old said.
“I use social media every day and the motivation of others inspired me to make healthier decisions and get fit.”
Ms Coomer participated in her first ‘bikini fitness’ competition in September, in which women who have completed an extended period of gruelling physical training ‘show-off’ the results of their blood, sweat and tears.
Ms Coomer described it as an incredibly uplifting feeling to be comfortable and confident in her own body.
“I have quite severe anxiety, and I am much more confident in my body and myself as a person than I was previously because of this experience,” she said.
Kayla Itsines is perhaps the most infamous fitness blogger whose Instagram feed containing motivational messages as well as ‘before and after’ shots are broadcast to almost six million followers.
Qualified Personal Trainer, Claire Spencer shares similar views and believes fitness bloggers are becoming the role models of 21st century women.
“I think these women are definitely impacting on the influx of motivation in women,” Ms Spencer said.
“When you scroll through your Instagram feed and see photos of these fitness role models they look so happy and healthy. When other women see this they want what they have.”
Regardless of the reasons behind the motivation to run, jump, squat, push or press, BOXR Trainer Beau Zwoener believes that fitness has rapidly become a lifestyle that is ingrained in the day-to-day lives of many women.
The experienced personal trainer says he has noticed an influx of female clients looking to shed some kilos or simply flip their lifestyle around. He believes that unlike men, women see fitness as a gateway to an enjoyable lifestyle and self-esteem booster rather than simply sculpting the ‘perfect’ body.
“Women see a healthy lifestyle as fun and exciting where they can sit on the beach and can hang out with friends, whereas for men it’s all just about big muscles,” he said.
“That’s why I think it’s different for women because there are more elements to what they’re achieving. They’re not interested in how fit they look and while they enjoy the fitness element, it’s about how empowered it makes women feel.
“They’re feeling empowered and then making good, healthy choices because of their empowerment rather than how flat their tummy is.”