Support systems are nice to have when you’re trying to live a healthy lifestyle. For the past few years, the Twitter world has offered information and a support network for people who may not have found it IRL (in real life). By adding a certain hashtag to your tweet, you can instantly join with the most supportive and trusted weight loss resources online.
We’ve found a few Twitter super memes, or communities, that have really grown to be the go-to resources for socially supported weight loss, fitness, and health. Not only do you get a virtual support group, but accountability, guidance, and access to resources are part of the package, or rather hashtag.
The running community is brought together on #runchat, organized by @RunningBecause and @iRunnerBlog. Whether a beginner or marathoner, there is a place for you at #RunChat. About one million people unite on this trending topic on Twitter. Followers benefit from a sense of a community that cares deeply about the sport of running and are willing to share information with each other. Join this Twitter community on #RunChat on the 2nd and 4th Sunday of every month at 8pm EST.
— Brad Gansberg (@BradGansberg) January 15, 2013
Join #plankaday on Twitter to get kudos for your daily planking! The @PlankADayNation welcomes new participants at any time, with #Plankaday’s goal to make healthy lifestyles fun and engaging. The people behind #plankaday are called the Plank Police and if you haven’t tweeted your plank they come looking for you! They reach about 7,000 people on Twitter, and each day there is an average of 5-10 new plankers joining the meme. Followers say the biggest benefits are support, accountability, and having fun.
#PlankADay complete!1 minute 46 seconds.Will be doing another later since I missed one yesterday!
— Jess [GuerillaGirl] (@guerillagirl) January 17, 2013
Hashtagging yoga-a-day or mentioning @GrowSoulBeauty on Instagram and Twitter brought more than 20,000 photos of people practicing yoga each day. It became so popular the creators couldn’t pass up the opportunity to help unite yogis on social media. Those who participate in #YogaADay see others striking creative poses and enjoy the camaraderie of the practice. There’s no pose police, but you’ll certainly feel accountable to yourself to get your stretch in when you’re part of this club!
— Roni Noone (@RoniNoone) January 17, 2013
Those looking for motivation and support during a health and fitness lifestyle change can join #Fitfluential’s Twitter chats Monday-Friday at 8pm CST. #Fitfluential, which was started by @KellyOlexa, reaches a range of 4-12 million people within an hour, while followers discover new resources and products that help their weight loss journeys. At any time of day you can see, primarily women, posting updates on their own progress, links to inspiring stories, and more to keep this large but tight-knit community connected.
— Katy Widrick (@kwidrick) January 17, 2013
Getting fit and losing weight can be hard for mothers, but with the help of this community, mothers around the country have found the motivation and support to get healthy for themselves and their families. Using #Mamavation or mentioning @Mamavation unites fit-focused mothers supporting one another in gradual steps toward health living. The Mamavation community founded by @BookieBoo, is nearly four years old, and has lost more than 2500 pounds since November alone! Mamavation proves girl power is strong at any age.
— Amy (@SpotOnWellness) January 10, 2013
We, of course, can’t highlight every community on Twitter, but there are two worth mentioning who could be considered up-and-comers. They’ve got strong support spreading their word and loyal followings right from the start.
Since sitting and writing all day isn’t very good for the body, that community is uniting on Twitter at #WriterWellness to learn how to get active for their health. The purpose is to help 1,000 writers lose a total of 10,000 pounds. Followers of #WriterWellness get health tips and support for their lifestyle changes from the writing community. The hashtag reaches about 5,000 to 10,000 people from its on-going chats, said founder @MalenaLott.
— Janet M. Carter (@JMC_Writing) January 16, 2013
Dr. Richard Besser, the Chief Medical Editor for ABC News, gives expert advice to the Twitter world on any number of medical-related health issues. Recent chats have covered the flu and weight loss resolutions. The official chat “party” is scheduled for Tuesdays at 1pm EST, and participants can follow @DrRichardBesser or @ABCDrBChat, and of course #abcDrBchat. He may not get to answer everyone’s questions on Twitter, but he does lead an insightful and important conversation that reaches 18 to 25 million tweeters during the live chats. The biggest benefit to followers of #abcDrBchat is access to expert advice that they can share with others.
— Liz Neporent (@Lizzyfit) January 15, 2013