That’s right! I lost 15 pounds, lowered my body fat by 8%, and added 8 pounds of muscle in just ONE WEEK! Sound too good to be true? It’s not! Just check out my before/after shots for proof! If you want the insider scoop on how I made this AMAZING total body transformation, enter your credit card information below…….
C’mon…you didn’t think I was serious did you? I thought you guys knew me better than that by now!? Okay, well before I get another verbal assault unleashed on me, as I did after a certain article was published a few weeks ago, let me be clear with you; I didn’t lose 15 pounds, nor am I trying to push some gimmicky, fat loss program on you for only four easy payments of $19.95. What I am trying to do however, is shine some light on one of the dirty little secrets the fitness industry uses to play upon your most basic of insecurities, and in doing so, help sway you away from those “Lose Weight Fast!” diets, supplements, and workout programs.
I’m willing to bet every single one of you has seen one of these ads before. Whether it’s on the web, TV, or magazine, you’ve on doubt seen those amazing looking before and after shots that nearly every fitness company under the sun likes to use. On one side you’ve got an overweight, soft, sorry-looking body without any real muscular definition. To the right, you’ve got this unbelievably toned, and lean jackass with a smug smile staring back at you…almost as if they’re just sitting there, judging you.
To most people, these pictures are powerful. They create an impact. They instantly validate whatever product or service they’re being used to promote. They let you feel better about plunking down your hard-earned dollars for whatever fad you’re onto this time. You feel like you’re actually getting something that works this time. And why wouldn’t you? They clearly worked for the guy/girl in front of you. Hell, maybe there are dozens of “success stories” dancing across a late night infomercial that have you fantasizing about your own total body transformation. It’s easy to get carried away in the moment, and once you do…
Boom. Hook, line, and sinker. You’ve been sold.
The Real Deal on Before/After Shots
I feel like most people think they know better, but far too often fall victim to these
scams marketing tactics that drive product sales. After hearing countless testimonials and pictures of people with dramatic weight loss transformations all accompanied by the gentle reassurance of that infomercial voice over guy…you begin to second guess yourself.
Let’s be clear people…the majority of these photos are bogus. Some have been photoshopped. Some have had heads of the original person placed on that of a fitness model. There are a thousand tactics to make someone appear unfit and out of shape in a before picture.
Now, I’m not saying every single picture is a fake. There are some real transformations going on here. But as P90x, Insanity, and nearly every other scammy product in the industry says in ultra-fine print: “results not typical”.
My Before/After Shot
To help illustrate this point, I decided to do a little before/after photo shoot session for you guys. The two pictures you see were taken two hours apart. I woke up, and immediately began chugging water. I had a bowl of oatmeal. I had some more water. I walked down the street and grabbed a donut. Why? I don’t know, but I figured if I was going to pretend to be fat, I had to really get into the mindset. After my water and carb fest, and when I felt sufficiently bloated and began bordering on pregnant, I took my before photo.
Admittedly, I was feeling a bit sluggish, but the three-and-a-half minute pee helped put a little perk back into my step. I immediately had a cup of coffee and went to the gym. I did a pretty standard #epicpumpsesh, followed it up with some HIIT interval sprints, then knocked out a hundred decline plate crunches before calling it a day. All in all, I spent about 90 minutes working out, getting myself ready for my “after” photo shoot.
I got home, immediately jumped in front of the mirror, and took the after shot you see above. I used better lighting, but literally did nothing else to this picture. No photoshop or editing of any kind – what you see is what you get. Seriously, that’s how easy it is to manipulate a before/after photo shoot. And you know what…people ate it up. I posted my photos on a few message boards to gauge reactions. The response was a mixed bag – everything from “OMG you look so good, I bet you worked so hard!” to “lol u r so fat and ugly”. But bottom line, people believed I had worked really really hard to make this body transformation happen. Now, if I just so happened to have some bunk product to sell, you think these people would have been a little more keen to listen to me? It doesn’t take a genius to figure that one out.
Ignore the Fluff
The moral of the story here should be pretty clear – when you’re looking for a new product, supplement, or fitness program, do yourself a favor and ignore the before/after shots. Most of them are fake, and the ones that aren’t, well, they simply aren’t typical.
It’s not just the big fitness companies that do this – there are mom and pop fitness studio’s and personal training services who do the same stuff. If you feel like you’re being sold by a used car salesman (no offense to all you used car salesmen/women out there), it’s probably a good idea to walk away. There are wayyy too many over eager personal trainers and product promoters out there who are just dying to make the next sale…whatever the cost.
My advice to you; look for the trainer, company, etc. that doesn’t overly sell his/herself. Personally, I always knew my system worked. When I was in hardcore personal trainer mode, I knew I produced happy clients. I let word of mouth and a little self-promotion here and there be my main new business funnels. I had more work than I could handle and I was more than happy to turn away clients. If someone wanted to mess around with scammy/faddy nonsense, I didn’t really want them as a client anyways.
As I’ve grown a little older and more reflective, I’ve since softened my stance. I realize people need direction and guidance, especially when it comes to fitness. There are just too many flashy photos and high-paid PR companies pushing the junk that floods 98% of the fitness market these days. When I created this blog, and the rest of Share It Fitness, I tried to make education a priority. I stopped writing off those people who fell for the scammy gimmicks and genuinely set out to create a training system that uses the same basic system I used as a personal trainer…only this time, I wanted it available to anyone, anywhere, for an extremely affordable rate.
So in short, look for a trainer or system that speaks to YOU, ignore the fluff, watch out for the wolves in sheep’s clothing, and remember, there are NO easy shortcuts when it comes to getting in shape…unless of course you’ve mastered the art of the before/after promo shot.