Social Media has completely transformed my fitness experience. I used to use Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter solely with friends and family with which I regularly interacted in person. Slowly, I began to add old high school friends and new friends to my Facebook account. As I became more and more passionate about my running, my social networking feeds started to become much more fitness related. What began to happen to me is that I believe I was somewhat putting my friends, family, and acquaintances off with all of the running and fitness-related posts. Slowly I began to get more involved with Twitter and Instagram and really began to participate in Twitter running chats and following other runners on both Twitter and Instagram. I started to realize that Twitter and Instagram are great places for me to focus on my fitness interests. I can feel free to post all of my running and fitness related pictures and musings and look at other people’s running and fitness related pictures and posts. Slowly but surely I found myself limiting my fitness pictures and posts solely to Twitter and Instagram and limiting my pictures and posts of all non-fitness related items to Facebook. This has helped me reach the correct audiences.
I was at a school district librarian meeting recently and a librarian acquaintance whom I also happen to be “friends” with on Facebook approached me to tell me how I haven’t been posting pictures of my running shoes on Facebook anymore. I remember she used to tease me about all of my running-related posts, and as I’m sure she didn’t intend her comments to be mean-spirited or ugly, sensitive me always kind of took them that way. I truly felt I was putting her off, and possibly many other family members and friends. This is why I have enjoyed compartmentalizing my social networking interactions. While my librarian friend thought it was odd that I posted all of these running and fitness related items, many others out in cyberspace that I have befriended, share these interests with me and we enjoy our own unique relationship online.
So, to all my Instagram and Twitter fitness friends: thanks for being there and sharing your lives with me.