When you’re scrolling through Instagram it’s pretty likely you’re going to see some #fitspo posts.
The type of photo that shows two images side by side; a ‘before’ with a belly and an ‘after’ with rock hard abs.
But before you start feeling bad about your own body being more #bananasplitspo than anything else, it’s important to note that these transformation photos aren’t always what they appear.
Fitness personality Emily Skye wants people to know that a lot of these body transformation photos are not what they seem, so she’s sharing the tricks people are using to make them look super fit – in just a few seconds.
Skye shared the photo above, which she calls her “three-second transformation”, with her 1.8 million followers on Instagram, explaining that the photo on the left is of her with her stomach pushed out and the right is with her stomach flexed.
“Your posture, angles, posing & lighting makes a big difference!” she writes.
“Next time you look at a photo of someone who looks ‘perfect’ online or in a magazine remind yourself that the person in the photo doesn’t walk around looking like that! They’re posed, in their best angles with a tight or flexed tummy in ‘good’ lighting.”
Skye shows just how important posture is in a video posted a few weeks ago.
“Good posture makes all the difference!” the model writes.
“No only do you feel better & have less aches & pains but you look better & more confident too!”
On her Facebook page, Skye explained that she does this type of post because she “struggled for many years” with feeling like she was not ‘enough’, because she couldn’t keep up with images that were ultimately too good to be true.
“Like anyone, I like to show my best angles in good lighting, but I also like to be real with people as well and show the ‘not so flattering images & angles’,” Sky wrote with the image below.
“I know this may be obvious to a lot of you but these days there are so many images floating around online of what’s perceived to be the ‘perfect body’. People are in their perfectly posed photos, in perfect lighting with filters and photoshopping added to the mix.
“The problem I see with this is people (specifically young women) compare themselves to those perfectly posed bodies and wonder why they don’t look like that too!”
Skye advises her followers to be “smart and aware” when looking at images online.
“And most importantly don’t compare yourself to ANYONE,” she writes.
“Be your best you! – Perfectly imperfect!”
Listen: On The Well podcast, we look at how the “fitspiration” movement can do more harm than good, why our notions of exercise revolve around body image, and how to ignore all that and make exercise habits that work for you.