The 6 Most Shockingly Irresponsible “Fitspiration” Photos

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About Kevin Moore

Kevin Moore is a Pilates instructor and movement therapist based out of Hong Kong. He also lectures for the Evidence-Based Fitness Academy as a Barefoot Training Specialist (BTS) Master Trainer. You can read his blog and follow him on Facebook and Twitter.


  1. This would have been more impressive if, at the bottom of the article there hadn’t been a link that said “You might also like: how to have flat abs, better sex and rule the world in 8 easy steps.”

    • ‘And rule the world the world in 8 days’ I think you missed the sarcastic tone. Another very good article and definatly along the same lines as this one.

  2. One of the pics used in your article is of my friend….used with his permission?!!!

  3. These comments are comical. You wouldn’t put a fat person eating McDonald’s on a poster and have any of these slogans on them. Having a fit person on them is now all of a sudden a bad thing? I thought we were trying to get people to be fit and take care of themselves instead of sitting on the couch being lazy. Let’s keep it in perspective. I doubt very highly that someone is going to read these and say that I have to be crawling and puking for it to mean that I had a good workout. That is just stupid to take it literally.

    • ThePaleKing71 says:

      There’s a difference between a fit person, and an aesthetically pleasing, photo-shopped image that doesn’t have much basis in reality. Like the author said, you’re not going to see Kristin Rhodes on any “strong is the new skinny” memes.

  4. Aaron Claypool says:

    It’s so easy to get caught up in the image and mindset those kind of ads convey. With nearly 2/3 of Americans actually overweight or obese, it does feel like the message those ads produce ends up driving more people away from a fit lifestyle. It’s saying “if you’re not gonna look *this* good, don’t bother stepping up”.
    That’s not to blame the fitness industry. It’s just to say that those types of ads are meant to sell a product to a very limited group. They’re not meant to be sage advice.

  5. I’ve written two book about this subject baseed on 10 years of extensive research and Kevin is absolutely correct in every aspect. I applaud him heartily for speaking out. Wish more people would see the stupidity behind what we’re told about health. One other point: in order to increase muscle size, you must tear those muscles. It is this that then causes the body to repair them stronger and bigger. Tearing them repeatedly is what you have to do to get the size of body builders. However you look at it, deliberately tearing your muscles can’t ever be a healthy option.

  6. wellokaythen says:

    Wow. Doesn’t anyone actually, you know, have FUN when they exercise? Seems like some part of it should be enjoyable.

    Isn’t it supposed to be fun on some level?

  7. Frustrated says:

    I wholeheartedly disagree with this article. Strong means different things for different people, just like fit means different things for people in different sports. To discount anyone’s form of motivation seems silly. Everyone needs motivation, it’s not going to be the same thing for everyone. Rather than anyone trashing someone else’s motivation, it would seem better to find alternate forms of motivation that DO motivate that person instead. Just my two cents.

  8. As an ex-competitive cross country skier with coaching qualifications, I know what its like to go past my limits, and I also know what its like to be truly healthy. Here’s what I hate about those images:

    1) Bulk Isn’t Health

    To feel healthy and in shape, you’ve gotta work on your cardio. Work on running 5 or 10 kms. Do free weights to get toned. Strictly anaerobic training won’t make you feel any better during your day to day, and isn’t something you can maintain your entire life. It will release more endorphins too.

    2) How to Train

    Unless you’re being competitive and judged, pushing past your limit is dangerous. Train TO your limit, then recover. You will still improve on your results, but won’t have to overcome injury. I’ve raced to the point where I can’t stand up after the finish line, a and I can’t distinguish a bus from a tree, but to do that each day in training would be absurd.


  9. sanctifying.victory says:

    I saved all of the images to my iPad as inspiration.

    And you really need to get a sense of proportion. One minute with a real existential crisis would disabuse you of your silliness.

  10. @sanctifying.victory DITTO!

    When I went from obese chips chomper to working out for health, sport, entertainment, many former friends called me “obsessed”, “gym rat”, “spinach breath”. A few saw the changes in me & changed, too. The rest still content themselves into greater obesity, into heart disease. I like the photos, love anything motivating others toward fitness goals.


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  2. […] The 6 Most Shockingly Irresponsible “Fitspiration” Photos So beautiful, in fact, that the rest of the get betterier and fitness propaganda floating around Facebook like turds in a pool started to really, really piss me off. So thoughtful deconstruction has been …. What do all three of the women pictured above have … Read more on The Good Men Project […]

  3. […] when I came across this great article by Kevin Moore on the ‘6 most shockingly irresponsible “fitspiration” photos’, it really hit a nerve. Moore looks at a few Pinterest type images that blend a catchy motivational […]

  4. […] But let’s shift the context for photo 2.  Slap that .jpeg on a gay-only or gay-friendly website, and similar comments might appear.  The Main Site isn’t an entrepôt for gay pornography (not primarily, anyway, though there are certainly some choice cutlets on display there); we can safely assume that the posters of these images knew the difference.  Photo 1, they’ve got to be thinking at least subconsciously, is for the “spank bank,” while photo 2 is merely intended as some grrreat fitspirtation. […]

  5. […] has been a lot of talk lately, on The Good Men Project and elsewhere, about the so-called “fitspiration” posters which […]

  6. […] over pinterest.  well, i pinned an article that make some astute observations about such images: “the 6 most shockingly irresponsible ‘fitspiration’ photos’” by kevin moore, published on the good men project on 2013년09월12일.  as i said about this post […]

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