The Fitness Stars of Instagram

Need a little Monday motivation? Follow these accounts and you’ll want to HIIT the gym in no time.

Fitness is ultimately about well-being, sure. But let’s be honest, it can also, at times be a little bit about appearances. Therefore, it makes perfect sense that many PTs would choose to use the visual medium of Instagram to spread awareness of their brands and become online sensations. Many fitness gurus have literally made their careers on Instagram, commanding huge followings with whom they share their top tips for healthier way of life. What starts as a follow on Instagram can develop into a book, plan or video purchase, so these trainers have got to have strong social game.

Here’s the lowdown on the personal trainers whose Instagram’s will provide you with all the fitspiration you’ll ever need, from handy work out videos to healthy recipe tutorials.

  1. Kayla Itsineskayla

Kayla is an Australian personal trainer whose plan – The Bikini Body Guide- is followed by over ten million women across the world. The app ‘Sweat with Kayla’ provides both exercises and meal plans over an initial twelve-week period, during which you take body shots to track your progress. Much of Kayla’s success has been down to her online presence; she has 5 million insta followers and posts useful tips and videos, very handy for those who don’t want to commit to buying the programme! The ‘BBG’ online community is a network of women – who also refer to themselves as ‘Kayla’s Army’- following their plan who use Instagram to document their progress and support one another. A big part of the programme and of Itsines’s Instagram are these  progress shots, which are shared throughout the community. Also to be expected, lots of pictures of Kayla’s two huskies and the odd motivational quote!

2. Joe Wicksjoe wicks

Joe Wicks a.k.a the Body Coach was a personal trainer before utilizing Instagram in 2014 to make his fifteen second #leanin15 recipe videos. Wick’s business is now based around online nutrition and work out plans, and his recent recipe book ‘Lean in 15’ became the fastest selling debut cookbook in the UK. His fun and cheeky videos often feature midget trees (ie broccoli) and lots of Wick’s naked chest – which only serves to make them even more watchable! As well his recipes and HIIT tutorials, Wicks often shares his client’s monthly progress shots with his 1.1million Insta followers. Seeing how far people have come – especially when his diet includes CHEESE – is pretty good motivation if you’re feeling a little despondent about getting back on that healthy grind.

3. Skinny Bitch Collective/ Russel BatemanSBC

Russel Batemen, founder of the Skinny Bitch Collective, trains the likes of Millie Macintosh and Suki Waterhouse. His classes may be invitation only, but that hasn’t stopped gym bunnies from far and wide – over 96k of them- using his insta as a source of inspiration. Expect to see music video worthy clips of fierce, beautiful, strong women kicking ass. And the occasional sarcy quote to keep the mood light eg. ‘the human body is 60% water so we’re basically just cucumbers with anxiety’. Unlike other fitness gurus, you won’t find any of Bateman’s selfies in his feed, there’s simply enough hot fit girl inspo to make you want to cry your way to the gym instead.

4. Zanna van Dijk zana

Fitness blogger Zanna van Dijk shares her ‘balanced approach to food, fitness and life’ with over 103k Instagram followers. From videos of her work outs (together with detailed instructions) to healthy food inspo pics, Zanna’s body positive approach will make you want to #eatclean, if only so you can look as good as she does! *Warning: Instagram stalking here will induce some serious work out gear envy!*

5. Clean Eating Alice

Alice Liveing is a PT and author of ‘The Body Bible’ with 311k Insta followers to her name. Beyond sharing pictures of her incredibly healthy meals (spoiler:alice expect to see LOTS of eggs), Alice shows off her enviable abs and taught arms in numerous gym selfies. If those pictures aren’t fitspiration enough, you can also try out one of her workouts, which she demonstrates in a video and details in the caption. Alice – who’s part of the LDN muscle team- advocates an attitude to food and fitness that is about overhauling your entire attitude to health. If you want to change a lifetime of bad habits but don’t know where to start, just keeping an eye on her page will help you along the way!

6. Tyrone Brennand

Tyrone Brennand may only have a comparatively modest 26.7k followers, but the videos he posts on Insta are a sure fire way to get you motivated and ready to sweat. Founder of ‘Be tyronethe Fittest’ (based in Chelsea, London), Tyrone is also a Prince’s Trust ambassador. His feed is largely made up of handy work out videos that double up as tutorials, which are great if you need a little guidance when trying to self-motivate. Brennand made head lines recently when he recently ran the marathon on behalf of astronaut Tim Peake, and although relatively new to the industry, is definitely one to watch.

All photos were sourced from Instagram.

The Met Gala 2016: Best Dressed

Celebrities from far and wide flocked to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York last night for the biggest fashion party of the year, the Met Gala. The annual event is chaired by fashion’s fairy god mother Anna Wintour (Taylor Swift, Idris Elba and Apple’s Chief Design Officer Johnathon Ive co-hosted this year) and it is she who is responsible for setting the theme. The theme for 2016 was Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology,  a relevant and thought-provoking choice given the increasingly central role tech is playing in the creation of clothes.

The Met Gala celebrates fashion as a form of art; the red carpet becomes a kind of exhibition space where designers their most innovative, intricate and breathtakingly beautiful pieces, curated especially for this all-important evening. True to the theme, almost all of the dresses gestured towards the evolution of design processes, featuring elements both hand finished and computer created. Cutting edge technology such as 3-D printing is changing what it means for a piece to be ‘hand-made’, blurring the lines between couture and ready-to-wear. This evolution within fashion is often referred to as ‘wearable tech’, a notion encapsulated in arguably THE stand out look of the night, Claire Danes’ Zac Posen gown.

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The stunning dress (above) looked relatively conventional until pictured in the dark, when 30 hidden battery packs lit up to make the very fabric of the gown glow, transforming Danes into a princess from a futuristic fairytale.

Similarly, Karolina Kurvkova’s dress incorporated LED lights (one-hundred and fifty of them, all hand placed to be precise!) which also utilised smart technology in order to react to social media in real time. The dress was a collaborative effort, designed by Marchesa and IBM Watson. The latter did copious amounts of Marchesea archival research and data analysis, so that the LED lit flowers could change colour in accordance with the emotions expressed about in on social media. If that isn’t a smart dress, I don’t know what is!

Speaking of Marchesa, for me the duo Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig were the stand out designers of the evening, dressing Nina Dobrev and Poppy Deleveigne as well as Kurkova. Delevigne’s look was probably my favourite of the whole evening as the entire ensemble was styled to perfection. Dark lipstick and poker straight, side-parted bleach blonde hair offset the plunging tiered dress wonderfully. Both Dobrev and Delevigne’s dresses oozed old school Hollywood glamour whilst showcasing a modern intricacy of design. The dresses also ticked two of the major boxes that the evening’s theme alluded to: embellishment and metallics.

Mirrors, feathers and sequins were also in plentiful supply last night, as were unusual fabrics (see Beyonce’s unbelievably amazing latex Givenchy dress), as designers attempted to outdo one another in the creative – and technologically enhanced- stakes. However, the futuristic vibe didn’t necessarily work for everyone, as the weird robo-cop style metal arm armour worn by Zayn Malik over his suit made clear. The same goes for Madonna, who literally showed her derrière in a sheer Givenchy lace number, Solange Knowles whose yellow ensemble looked more comical than cutting-edge and finally Lady Gaga, who seemed to have forgotten the bottom half of her outfit.

As per usual, there was also some impressive train action. Zoe Saldana’s Dolce & Gabanna feathered train (almost) rivalled Rihanna’s canary yellow extravaganza from last year and Stella Maxwell looked amazing in a slinky Topshop gown. As is the norm for any A-lister event,there was also a lot of Balmain, with Jordan Dunn, Cindy Crawford, Kylie Jenner, Kim Kardashian and Kanye West all dressed in Olivier Rousteing’s shimmering signature styles.

Beyond the gowns themselves, there was also some futuristic beauty styling on show, from metallic eye shadows to Lupita Nyong’o’s wild hair-do. Everyone is talking about the actress’s gravity-defying hair style – which whilst rather mad – actually looked incredibly on-brief and really rather chic. Whilst Nyong’o’s look has been compared in the press to a resident Dr Suess’s ‘Whoville’ (not altogether unfairly), this adventurous style certainly made her stand out from the crowd at a night where individuality is key.

Given that tickets to the gala reportedly cost upwards of £17k, the closest the vast majority of us will ever get to that red carpet is through pictures. So, in the spirit of inclusion, so that we might all feel a little more involved in this exclusive soiree, I have put together a slide show of my twenty favourite looks from last night. This way you can – at the very least – know who wore what and how good they looked in it , whilst day dreaming about one day owning a piece of futuristic fashion of your very own.

*All image copyright: Getty

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