Are We Stuck with a ‘Doom and Gloom’ Health Culture?

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Have you ever noticed how the culture surrounding health, especially the issues of weight and obesity, is overwhelmingly negative?

Television news reports try to sell us on society’s clumsy march into obesity by featuring headless idols to sloth (pun intended) lumbering around, mannequin-like in their anonymity. Just the sight of them strikes us with guilt and sends us heading to our treadmills and stationary bikes, hoping to sweat our way to salvation.

Don’t even get us started on how magazines promise hundreds of tips and tricks for weight loss, as if we were only waiting for somebody to come up with #63 and that would be the one that works. Diet tricks, the language of the defeated. If you can’t beat ‘em, trick ‘em.

Even the word obesity itself has such negative connotation it might as well mean failure, hopelessness or doom. Being surrounded by a culture that looks at obesity with such a defeatist attitude does nothing to help prevent its spread. It simply reinforces the guilt and shame.

Wouldn’t it be nice to have some positive feedback once in a while? Some coaching? Something inspirational?

Studies show the health of your environment and the people you surround yourself with can influence your health in positive ways. Hanging around with health conscious people motivates you to be health conscious. Positive reinforcement from your community gets results.

With that in mind, Endomondo is focused on the social side of health – developing the group you stay healthy with and are motivated by, while removing the guilt, gloom and doom from the discussion.

We’ve designed these unique features meant to connect you with your peers:

  1. Challenges – create a competition among your friends or colleagues
  2. Peptalk – when you see a friend is currently working out, type in a short message which is read out loud to him or her a few seconds later.
  3. Beat yourself – race against a previous workout, with audio coaching.
  4. Beat a friend – race against a friend’s previous workout, with audio coaching.
  5. Compete on a route – race against others working out on your favorite route,with audio coaching.

Successfully maintaining good health involves building community and being
supportive. The negative energy of the traditional narrative has not been helping, and frankly, we’re bored with all the exposes and shocking statistics. We aren’t doomed, we just need a clear challenge or a pep talk here and there.

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