Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Idea: Blackmail Yourself to Health

before
after

It’s no secret that most of us are overweight. I don’t think I’m going out on a limb by suggesting that motivation to eat better and work out more is the biggest issue. I just had a potentially evil idea for motivating people like me: blackmail yourself.

Suppose you had an app (e.g. a Facebook app) that recorded your “before” stats. This would capture a simple measurement like weight or BMI and (most importantly) an unflattering “before” picture of yourself. This would be like the first weigh in of The Biggest Loser except it’d all be private to you.

At first.

The trick would be that as long as you continue to post progress each week in the form of an updated picture, updated stats, or workout summaries, things would stay private. But if you get complacent, your most recent stats would be automatically leaked to your wall for all your friends to see.

If you simply keep up with your plan, eventually you’ll get to post one of those sweet “after” shots (if you want).

I can even see a Back To The Future style leak where only part of the image comes into focus at first as a warning. There’s seemingly endless potential for more social aspects, too, including positive support.

So is this the worst idea ever? Genius? Been done already? Personally this would encourage me to hit the gym more often and pour less syrup on my waffles.