8 Feel-Good Fitstagram Accounts To Follow

Photo: @Marawa
For all the mantras promoting body confidence on Instagram, it can be hard to be inspired by women with entirely different lifestyles to our own. Often, the reality of daily life – a job, Netflix, friends – distracts us from our well-intended fitness regimes.

It's also important to remember that we all have different body types; and many of us will never have a six-pack, or Jen Selter’s arse. But fitness should be less about what our bodies look like and more about what they are able to achieve.

If you're looking for inspiration to get active, it should make you feel good. With that in mind, here's our list of the UK's best Instagram fitness accounts to follow, comprised of real people who set realistic work out goals.

@foodandlycra (9k followers)

Food and Lycra is an account run by London-based friends Kim, Laura and Rachel. They run, cycle, swim with Swim Dem Crew (more on them later), do yoga, Tabata (a strand of high-intensity interval training), lift, squat, surf, play football and eat pretty much anything.

"We have a no-diet zone which means we pretty much eat what we want. Lots of people talk about having a balance but we find it tough to balance our daily lives – let alone the types of food we eat. So we just eat good food and sweat real hard for it! That's where we're probably not your traditional Instagram fitness account."

@sarahscottpole (77k followers)

Anyone who has ever spontaneously decided to go to a pole class for a laugh and left with severe friction burns on their inner thighs will appreciate the level of skill which goes into the sport. Sarah Scott videos not only the astounding results of her hard work but also the strength training which is central to her technique.

Another shot from the hugely talented @theimagecella 💕

A photo posted by sarahscottpole (@sarahscottpole) on

@challengesophie (7k followers)

Three years ago, Sophie was working in the business development department of a London start-up. Today, she’s training to cycle a distance of 2770km in 14 days from LA to Miami. Typical posts include photos of her undertaking extreme hikes, Tough Mudder challenges and Triathalons... as well as celebrating with pints at the finish line.
"Boundaries only exist in our minds," Sophie says. "We are all capable of far more than we think and with baby steps, bags of enthusiasm, a smile and a thirst for adventure, we can achieve anything."

@ajodudu (14k followers)

TV host, DJ and fitness vlogger AJ apparently never stops smiling. Her endlessly energectic Instagram account is a lesson in life balance, as pies and roasts are burned off with park push-ups and half marathons.

@pennypearson (7k followers )

This Welsh student teacher fills her spare time working towards competing in the British Weight Lifting Championships. Instead of smug inspirational quotes, Penny’s Instagram is filled with pictures of gritty gyms.

She is quick to acknowledge the demands of her hobby: "It shows my ups and downs in training, which is important because there are far many more downs. People forget about the struggle and think you get from A to B with ease. I never thought I could achieve anything through weightlifting, but here I am entering competitions and winning medals. If you want something and you're willing to work for it, you'll get it."

@swimdemcrew (2k followers)

Peigh Asante, Nathaniel Cole and Emily Deyn founded London-based collective Swim Dem Crew in 2013, when former marathon runner and long-time Run Dem Crew member Peigh had become too injured to continue running. Now with two sessions a week and a cult online following, Swim Dem encourages swimmers of all levels to challenge themselves.

"I aim to inspire others by being the best version of myself," Peigh says, "I want to demonstrate to others that it can be done. Don't be afraid to challenge convention and don't be afraid to fail. It's all part of growth and progression."

@camillamackintosh (1.1million followers)

Although former Made In Chelsea cast member, Quality Street heiress and wife of rapper Professor Green, Millie Mackintosh, has a naturally slender body, she has worked hard to transform from skinny to strong. Plus, as the cocktail-fuelled parties and festivals on her Instagram account demonstrate, she doesn’t take #eatclean too seriously. If you can’t get an invite to Skinny Bitch Collective (and, who can?), you can always copy moves from Millie’s Insta videos in your bedroom.

It's Friday! Head over to @lookmagazine where I will be doing an Instagram takeover today for the first day of #lfw15 📷📷📷

A photo posted by Millie Mackintosh (@camillamackintosh) on

@marawa (28k followers)

Marawa 'the amazing' Wamp runs hoola-hooping collective @themajorettes. She holds five world records including the world record for spinning 162 hoops at once, and can roller-skate whilst hooping. In the place of static mirror selfies are pictures of Marawa in sparkly hot pants and heeled roller-skates.

"People comment that my pictures are always colourful and fun", Marawa says. "I think fitness pictures can be really boring, but we can make so many crazy shapes with our body – I think that's way more interesting to look at!"

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