Lies, Damn Lies and Fitness

There are so many health and fitness fads out there – many with bogus health claims designed to suck you in and hand over your cash. P90X, Insanity, 8 Minute Abs, the Thigh Master…

The most powerful tool at these hucksters disposal – before and after photos. Who wouldn’t be persuaded to buy into a fad when you see the transformation of a doughy guy into someone with rock hard abs. 

Well H/T to Andrew Dixon for showing how those transformations come about. Andrew is a certified personal trainer and blogger at the HuffoPost. He demonstrates how the before and after photos really work.  I’ve heard about this before, but it is eye-opening to have someone show you how it works (emphasis mine).

The reasons these programs become so popular is because they are presented and marketed very well. These marketing campaigns use testimonials and before-and-after transformation photos. Before I claim it’s all bullshit, I want to make it clear that there are definitely some very impressive, genuine physical transformations out there. What I do take issue with are the transformations that are manipulated with Photoshop, professional lighting, postures to degrade or enhance their look, pro tans, sucking in or pushing out a bloated belly or flexing muscles vs. not flexing to obtain an optimal look.

Checkout the article. Andrew actually has before and after photos of himself taken within an hour that shows the techniques used in these miraculous transformations.

Andrew recommends using the images in the ads as inspiration but don’t be tricked into buying their products. I think that’s about right.  There are no get-slim-quick fitness plans.  I have yet to meet someone who took the weight off fast in a safe, healthy manner and kept the weight off.  It just doesn’t work that way.  If you are looking to drop the pounds fast, you will fail in the long run.

Here is my favorite recent fad.

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