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How Twitter Makes You Fitter

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Who do you follow on Twitter? Celebrities? Your friends? News channels?

Well, what about using your Twitter feed as fitness motivation and inspiration rather than just a stream of celebrity gossip, sports results and up-to the minute news updates. I follow plenty, perhaps too many runners, gym bunnies and weight lifting enthusiasts, but despite spending more time looking at my phone screen, I'm fitter than ever. And those I follow online have helped me get there.

Here's how your Twitter feed could make you fitter:

Find motivation from others tweeting workouts, healthy selfies and run stats, guilt tripping you to get out of bed, throw on some trainers and hit the pavement.

A gym session, run or yoga class equals a smug post-workout tweet. Workout tracking apps such as Nike + and Runkeeper have the option to publish your training session directly to Twitter and Facebook. Now you can earn bragging rights, letting everyone know you started your Thursday morning with a sweaty spinning class (and post sweat fest skinny latte).

You can get Personal Training advice for free - look out for PT's tweets, many will respond to questions or direct messages on Twitter. Sign up to free challenges from professionals, such as Stuart Armory's Fit Team 14. Using hashtags, like #fitteam14 will make you feel like part of a community and is the perfect way to 'meet' other Twitter users taking part in the same challenges and workouts.

Follow local studios, gyms, sports shops and bootcamps- they often tweet any great deals, offers or freebies that are too good to refuse.

Discover fitness, running and healthy eating blogs for extra motivation, workout challenges and recipe inspiration. Learn more about new fitness trends, classes and studios from those in the know.

Keep yourself accountable on Twitter- get a personal trainer or friend to send you encouraging tweets, you'll be surprised how many others are in the same boat that will follow, re-tweet and comment on your fitness related tweets. A study in the Journal of American Medical Informatics Association found that participants that monitored their weight loss on Twitter had lower body mass indexes after six months than those who didn't. Time to get typing...

For daily fitness inspiration and motivation, try following some of these feeds on twitter;

@fitnessontoast
@fannetasticfood
@stuartarmorypt
@theleanmachines
@sarahdussault
@julia_b
@runwithkaren
@charliedwatson (that's me- for plenty of running selfies and treadmill workouts)