Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Social Networks

Swim.  Bike.  Run.  Post.

It seems to me that more and more people are sharing their multisport experiences online every day.  Between blogging, tweeting, facebook-posting and wuphing, it seems that many of today's athletes spend as much time talking about their workout as they do actually working out.  The question that I want answered is - why?

Accountability?  Perhaps sharing your progress after each run or ride gives you the added incentive to make sure that you put in the miles.  No one can see you if you slow down or start to walk during that tough hill - but if you know they'll see your pace data on facebook then maybe that can keep your feet moving...

Vanity?  There's a difference in sharing your progress and showing off.  Maybe you're driven to impress.  Perhaps you were the kid who told his mom everything he accomplished after every day of school and you've replaced your straight-A report card with tweets like, "15 miles sure seemed tough today - maybe it wuz the blizzard? still kept it around 6:20...time for some acai juice..."

Logistics?  Maybe you don't really care who is reading your info.  Perhaps a quick post on a social network is the simplest form of a training journal available these days?  You can punch in your info from your iphone and have a chronological listing of workouts for the year.

Advertising?  With the amount of sponsors and the rapid expansion of the multisport industry, maybe you want to get in on some of that swag?  Though perhaps you should make it a little less obvious than, "@cepsocks @zoot @2xu feeling a little sore after today's half mary.  i'm willing to try out some compression socks if any1 is interested ;) #sendmefreestuff"

Inspiration?  Are you someone's Lance Armstrong?  Maybe your mom or your sister or your kids see the work you put in and it gives them that extra push to chase down their dreams and beat them into submission.  Post on. 

Significance?  Maybe that run is the only interesting thing you did today and you feel the need to share it.  If you didn't swim.bike.run your facebook status might read, "worked another 11hr day.  more traffic on the way home.  sweet."  Most of us can relate.

Or maybe it's something completely different?  The truth is that the reason for sharing is probably different for everyone; falling somewhere between self-righteousness and self sacrifice.  Do you share every mile of your journey with the world?  Do you enjoy watching other peoples'?  Or do post-workout posts rank right up there with what-I'm-eating-for-lunch updates?

7 comments:

  1. I share some of the time. Depends on my mood and workout. I do it mainly for accountability, inspiration (although, I'm not sure how many people I actually inspire) and for camaraderie. For the most part, I enjoy see others complete their workouts. I'm not to big on the basic "I swam 2000yds" or "I ran 6 miles", but I enjoy the updates that share something unique about the update like "I ran 16 miles - the furthest I have run this year".

    As for the camaraderie, I work from home so updates/chatting on the social networks is like my water cooler chit-chat.

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  2. I post about my workouts for the camaraderie. The network of people that I have connected with makes it all worthwhile. I have place where people will understand the sacrifices that comes with the hard work and the joy that comes from a job well done. Most of family and friends just don't understand that like my tri-blogging friends.

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  3. My posting began as logistics and accountability with a pinch of hopeful inspiration. It's now turned into much more camaraderie and inspiration, but still partially accountability. With very few people around physically around me that train/workout as I do, it's nice having an online group of people to share stories with. And I certainly look to other people's workouts for ideas, so I try to provide my details for others (and I know a couple people who have used those details, so it's more reason for me to post 'em).

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  4. Wait.. I was told if you blog your workouts, it gets you laid?!

    Chix dig blogs.

    That is all, carry on.

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  5. Also blog is looking nice :D

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  6. Hmm this is a loaded post and I'm not quite thoughtful enough for it at this moment. But I definitely started my blog for accountability and so far it has held up to it. I didn't have the accountability from running on a HS/College team anymore and I've been telling myself I'm going to do a triathlon for years. I don't know that I would be registered for a summer tri (and half mary!) and working on getting comfortable riding my new! road bike (and have sweet aero bars ;) if it wasn't for my blog.

    It has totally evolved to be much more than that as well, almost 300 followers? Where did they come from :) Well I know why John follows :P

    And maybe just a tiny bit of vanity.

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  7. Cut out the BS man. I post for the same reason I do everything else in life: the hot chicks.

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