This Fitness Star Reveals The Truth Behind Those ‘Amazing’ Before/After Photos.
While most transformation journeys are tracked over a period of time, from a month to several years, a new trend that takes a mere 30 seconds has taken the Internet by storm. These 30-second transformations are based on a well-known practice – good posture, among a few other tricks.
It’s common sense: the way you stand and pose dramatically alters the way you are seen by others. But the point of most of these posts is to warn viewers not to believe everything they see.
While there certainly are transformation stories that are real and inspiring, there are also many scam accounts that promote unrealistic results. Fitness bloggers demonstrate on Instagram how simple it is to fake a transformation photo by straightening their backs and adjusting their clothing.
Many users, most of them women, have responded to the photos with humor and positivity. Some view the posts as a message of self-love and confidence building that helps them accept wherever they are at in their own fitness journeys.
Take a look at some of the “transformations” below.
Landscape architect and fitness blogger Jessica Pack is working towards self-love, and at some point began Kayla Itsines’s Body Bikini Guide program. Though unintentional, she has since gained her own following, a number that has reached about 50K.
[2 of 2] #MyHealthStory changed for the better 7ish months ago. My perspective changed. My attitude changed. My mind slowly began to change as well. I became inspired and motivated by many incredible women. Women who have similar and different struggles. Women who are not just courageous in telling their stories, but who are funny, friendly, beautiful, loving, empowering and strong. They began to teach me a thing or two about self love and compassion. I found my moment where I became ready to create my own success story just like these amazing women. And that's what I set out to do. My journey has never been about losing weight and getting fit so that I feel attractive. It's about embracing my insecurities and not just testing but pushing my mental limits. I do it to feel strong, powerful, capable. Nothing makes me feel more like a badass than rocking a BBG workout. @kayla_itsines, this community, you all showed me how to self create instead of self destruct and for that I'm forever grateful. My journey continues to be one of self discovery. I didn't set out to FIND myself again. I wanted to BECOME myself and all that I am meant to be. The only thing I know for certain is that self discovery is captivating. And for the first time in my whole life I not only feel beautiful, I know I am. "The greatest challenge in life is discovering who you are. The second greatest challenge is being happy with what you find." 👈🏼 And I can honestly say, this is probably the happiest I've ever been with myself! Tagged by my beautiful friend @fitbynati to share #MyHealthStory for @pumpup 💕 nominated babes, share yours if you'd like @foamrollfanatic @sneakers_sara @healthysweetpotato
Pack recently posted this 'Before' and 'After' collage on Instagram, and later explained that the two were taken only 30 seconds apart.
"I am not a before picture. I am not an after picture. I am not fat nor am I perfect. I’m flawed. I’m scarred. I’m insecure. But I’m learning and I’m hopeful that one day I’ll fully love me," she professed.
🚨 This is not a transformation photo 🚨 This week I've decided to do the 30 second transformation photo. These pics were taken second apart this morning. On the left my posture is poor, I'm pushing my belly out as far as possible, I adjusted my bottoms to show my gross, unsightly and horrid love handles. These are often concealed by my high waisted pants and bottoms that do fit so much better now. As much as it pains me to showcase these, it also proves that my body isn't perfect and that I still have work to do and fat to lose (I'm working so hard to get rid of my love handles and lower tummy fat. Yes it has dramatically reduced already but it still exists and I'm still insecure about it). On the right I'm standing straight and comfortably. I'm lightly flexing and I've adjusted my bottoms to hide my love handles. I'm thankful for bikini bottoms that now fit well and hide these but I'm also trying to show that they still exist quite a bit and that not everything we see meets the eye here on social media. You can show you best angles and hide your flaws but at the end of the day what we chose to showcase is a reflection of ourselves. My body isn't perfect. I still have imperfections and flaws that I'm slowly learning to be comfortable with. I want to be real and honest and open. Yes I've accomplished a lot, but yes my body still has less than ideal days when it doesn't look its best. Fitness and health is not a fix. It's not a destination. It's a lifestyle. If you force your progress you know who you are cheating?! You. You only cheat you. Yes I like to show my best most of the time but I've also realized by not showing my worst that it only harms myself. Being vulnerable and imperfect is hard but lying to yourself is worse. I know I'm hard on myself, it's a flaw on its own, but I'm slowly learning to be gentle and kind but it starts with being truthful to myself and knowing and understanding my imperfections and realizing that, although they exist, they don't define me. I am not a before picture. I am not an after picture. I am not fat nor am I perfect. I'm flawed. I'm scarred. I'm insecure. But I'm learning and I'm hopeful that one day I'll fully love me 💕
Several other women have done this in the past and many are following suit.
A different kind of #transformationtuesday Don't get me wrong. I love progress pics because they show so much more than a scale and they can show so much strength and well, progress. That said, it is important to keep things in perspective. And remember to be kind to yourself, especially when you are scrolling through insta. So with that, here is my #30secondtransformation post from this morning. Thank you @fitmom.2.three for this! These photos are 30 seconds apart. Fastest transformation ever! 😜 It is amazing what a little change in position (slouching), lighting, cropping, etc. can do and how it makes you look at a pic differently. so remember that and be kind to yourself #eatclean #fitmom #fitness #fitspiration #fitspo #progresspic #bbgprogress #bbgweek1 #lgaccountability #lgfitandlean2016 #newmom #weightloss #bodyafterbaby #gymlife #bbg #bbg2016 #bbg2 #bbgmoms #bbgmums #bbggirls #bbgcommunity #bbgover30 #thekaylamovement #kaylaitsines #kayla_itsines #momscanbefit #abs #flex
While celebrating your body and hard work is important, these women want to point out that many examples are deceptive.
The beautiful @fitmom.2.three challenged me to show a #30secondtransformation 😃 I love the concept! Of course we show our best side when we can. I usually jugde my self hard, but lately I've started to love myself a little bit more! And I'm quite happy with my self and proud of what I've managed so far! Don't get fooled. We all have bad selfies 😜 Tagged ladies, show me! 😀😙
This doesn't mean you should stop working toward your goals, but we should stop comparing ourselves to others, which is especially harmful in the case of young women.
Here is my 30 second transformation...are you amazed?? I literally took these 30 seconds apart...I get irritated with phony before and after pics! If you want to show a before and after picture stand in the same position...in the same lighting...there! Rant over #30secondtransformation#letsbereal#momof3#igfitness#igbodybuiding#whendidfitnessgettrendy#fitfam#abs#girlswithmuscle#girlswholift
One Facebook user commented:
"This is such a great message. Social media has everyone putting their best foot forward and showing the world what great lives they lead, but inside everyone is still full of their own insecurities and questioning why everyone else around them has such great lives."
My #30secondtransformation pic. Ok, mine aren't that different but I am in the middle of bulking here lol. 🙈😧😁 Just want to note I'm not making fun or discrediting anyone's actual transformation pic (heck I post my own) but I did this to show how a simple shift in posture, camera angle & pose can change one's entire look. We can become so fixated on our outward appearance, but the Lord only looks at the heart. Anyone can have a great body but a great heart is what makes you truly great! ☝💜💕✌ #30secondtransformationchallenge #challenge #beyourself #loveyourself #goodheart #selfie #selflove #bodylove #godlovesyou #fitchick #bodybuilder #girlsthatlift #girlswithmuscle #musclemom #fit #mindbodysoul #bodylove #bodysoulfitness #DollAthletics
The idea is not to shame anyone for their transformation photos, but to prevent others from being so hard on themselves.
Don't ever believe what you see online. On the left is a normal picture, and the right is the edited version. Up until last night, I had no clue that you could edit pictures this way on an app(and how simple it was), or that girls actually did it. I wanted to share so that other girls could see this, and see that the majority of those "perfect" bodies you see online aren't real. All they do is set an unrealistic standard for beauty. It's shit like that, that causes young girls to have eating disorders and low self esteem. I think it's about time we start promoting true beauty, and not all this fake and artificial crap. #30secondtransformation #showyourtruebeauty #realbodiesarebeautiful #editedpicture #beforeandafter #midoribeyou
"It is easy to post your best, but so difficult to post about your worse,” Pack said in an interview.
☆☆ read the post! ... Surprise! ! ... #transformationtuesday ... First of all, I am not making fun of anyone's transformation pic or progress. At all. ♡ Transformation, growth, and change is powerful. (And HARD work!!) This is just to show how important our perspective is ... this is my #30secondtransformation. The angle of the camera, the posture, the energy, the cropping, the confidence ... all way different. I can make a pretty good "before" pic, huh??. ;) ;) This was fun to post ... but it reminds me to not be so hard on my "external shell" ... we need to be strong on the inside, too. A beautiful heart is so much greater than a beautiful body. ♡♡♡ edited to add : these pics were both YESTERDAY. LOL ... things are not always as they appear. :) :) :) ■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■ anyone want to have fun with this crazy #30secondtransformationchallenge tag? ;)
“I want my account to always be relatable, real, honest, and open. I don’t want any girl to see my page and think my body is perfect, because it is not. I don’t want other girls comparing themselves to my best photos."