Why I’m No Longer An Ambassador

I want to preface this post with a big bold “If you’re reading this post then it’s probably not about you.” If you’re uncomfortable with probably know that it’s about a 98% chance this isn’t about you or that you’re good enough at disguising yourself online that I don’t know that this post is about you and in this specific case those two things are essentially the same. Got it? So in the words of my favorite UMD crazy sorority girl, ” tie yourself down to whatever chair you’re sitting in, because this is going to be a rough* ride.”

As I mentioned about a week ago, this blog is now without ambassador logos. I’ll let you use your imagination as to which I’m speaking of at the moment but there’s that same 98% chance that it’s the one you’re thinking of, we’re all smart people and I’d imagine we all understand that I’m going to be a little intentionally vague here to avoid getting myself into trouble with this post.

I’m going to make a few confessions here. First, lately, I’d rather chew on glass than participate in a twitter chat. I just don’t understand how people have time to participate at the times they’re held. This will tie into my second confession but honestly, by the time I get home from work and go to the gym and eat dinner it’s like 8:30 or 9 at night. I’d seriously like to use the last hour I’m awake to spend time with my boyfriend or eat Oreos or watch baseball (my ideal night includes all three of those things at once). Apparently, this aversion to spending all my free time at night on Twitter makes me less visible to the BRANDS who employs social media coordinators to allegedly watch every thing a certain group of Ambassadors do online. And while I’m eating OMG processed cookies (ps. Oreos are vegan and I feel like that’s indisputable proof that a vegan diet is nothing special) I’m making myself seem less available than the people snacking on some variety of veggies dipped in protein powder (which is WAY HEALTHIER GUYS**!) and chatting on the Twitters.
Actual food.

Actual food.

Speaking of the all mighty BRAND, here’s my second confession: I HAVE NO INTEREST IN BECOMING ONE. I love my job and I know I’m very fortunate to feel that way. My job is my job…and all of this talk about how I’m being spied on 24/7 by big companies who want to give me things if only I’d blog about the right things and spend more time on Twitter. You know what… keep your free shoes if it means I can get back to blogging without wondering how this post will affect me later. Trust me, I envy everyone who has a flexible work schedule and well behaved kids and all the things that lend to your being able to turn your blog into a career – remember the beginning of this post where I say this isn’t about you, trust me this isn’t me judging you for your priorities because they work for you and not for me - this is my judging the crap out of people who try to jam over 1,000 bloggers into the same mold. It’s boring and when everyone leaves their job and tries to make their personal “blog brand” a real thing but there’s suddenly 999 other people encouraged by the same team of people to do the same thing … well it won’t work because no one needs or wants 1,000 bloggers doing the same thing.
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And speaking more about those people I am judging (if you’re reading this part of the post you’ll know if it is about you because it’s only about one or two people) – and I’m going to say this in the vaguest terms possible so stick with me here – I’d like to not receive any kind of cease and desist letter after publishing this – SOMETIMES I JUST WANT SOME FREAKING FREE YOGURT, OK. And I won’t feel like that company, who is being nice enough to let me eat some of its expensive yogurt for free while asking for literally nothing in return, is taking advantage of me because the yogurt is the only payment I want. And speaking of taking advantage of people – using your hashtags all the time makes your brand more visible, not mine. That’s something people do so they can be lumped into your OMG-EXCLUSIVE group of ambassadors – most of which get nothing out of it other than being part of a community of really nice (that same 98% ….my thoughts on that other 2% is coming in a second) people with similar interests – and those people are really lovely and I like them SO MUCH. So please don’t act all, “but I’m just looking out for your best interests, the only time you should ‘work for free’ is when it’s my idea” when you’re like that yogurt company but on crack (if crack was made jugs of protein powder and sweat).
That  ties into my biggest problem and the turning point for me getting out of ambassador dodge,which is the bizarrely unhealthy relationship with food. I’ll have a whole post on this later to keep this from turning into a novel but it’s just too much for me to watch people diagnose themselves with food allergies and intolerances without consulting a doctor (which by the way folks, food allergies and intolerances are autoimmune issues – please stop letting your internet friends diagnose you with them because occasionally you get stomach aches) in, what seems to be, the interest of making your blog more appealing to people who seem to have very disordered relationships with food.  I have no issues with people changing their diets but at least be honest about the fact that you want to look good, everybody does and it’s so stupid to lie about it.
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So that’s that and I hope, as you read that, you remember that this isn’t a post judging people who are able to prioritize their blogging at a high level. Or people who are happy with a system that I didn’t particularly enjoy. Or choose to eat healthier than me.  Or have legitimate reason to cut whole food groups from their diet.  I do believe it’s important for me to be honest about why my blog has changed direction, even if this won’t make me terribly popular. I’m ok with that right now. I’ve left comments open and un-moderated.
*Yea, ok, so I cut out the f-bomb right there.
**It’s not. And if you’re consuming all of your protein for a day out of powder, perhaps you might want to stop using the #CLEANEATS hashtag or perhaps you shouldn’t judge people for getting fast food sometimes because most of those powders are big tubs of chemicals. They’re no better than my processed chicken nuggets (and don’t say you’re mixing it with fruits and veggies so it’s better. And before you say “But it’s vegan!” re-read the part of this post about Oreos, mmmkay). And obviously not everyone participating in twitter chats eats like this. I just feel like there’s a constant display of humblebragging/one upping on who is being the healthiest at chat time and it often feels really, really fake.

 

173 Responses to Why I’m No Longer An Ambassador
  1. Sara X.
    July 11, 2013 | 7:48 am

    ::clapping:: Proud of you for doing what YOU want to do!
    And PS: will you still love me when I put protein powder in my coffee? I promise to still eat cookies.

    Sara X. recently posted..More Memes That Make Me SmileMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 7:42 pm

      Love you no matter what…even though I imagine that coffee tasting awful hahaha. You’re my favorite. xoxo.

  2. Beth M
    July 11, 2013 | 7:58 am

    1. if you get some cake pop sticks + several-many oreos, dip into melted white chocolate, then decorate with red icing, you get BASEBALL OREO POPS!!!!!

    2. you’re more awesome than oreo pops. :)

  3. Madeline
    July 11, 2013 | 8:02 am

    I seriously applaud you for standing up for your beliefs! I also completely agree about self-diagnosing – as someone who is going into the medical profession it drives me BANANAS when people WebMD themselves without seeking someone trained to help them. Do food allergies exist? Obviously. But not everyone has 15.
    Madeline recently posted..Old Wives Tales and Baby GenderMy Profile

  4. Danielle
    July 11, 2013 | 8:12 am

    You go girlfriend!! ;)

  5. Coco
    July 11, 2013 | 8:13 am

    I found the whole fitness blog community when I randomly found the fitblog chat which sadly is no more (perhaps pushed out by all the brand chats?) and runchat. I still enjoy some chats for the same reason — “meeting” others and getting some tips and inspiration — but some are so crazy popular now that it just makes my head hurt so I shut my laptop. The only time a brand noticed me during a chat was when Mizuno commented on my Tweet about jumping ship from Mizuno to Saucony — d’oh! ;-)
    Anyway, I’m so glad I meet you at Fitbloggin! We should meet up for a Pacers shopping spree. ;-)
    Coco recently posted..Online Shopping (Reebok & Handful)My Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 8:07 pm

      That’s too funny. I just switched from Mizuno to Saucony too! I’m
      Yes yes yes! Can’t wait!!!

  6. Victoria
    July 11, 2013 | 8:30 am

    But, how on earth will you be able to review important fitness related items like pillows and washing machines without a big important BLOG NETWORK???

    So glad to see you do what is right for you. Rant away, and forget those crazy people.
    Victoria recently posted..Go Big or Go Home: The Electrolyte EditionMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 8:21 pm

      Hahaha, so true. I mean I get that we’re all more than fitness machines…we can like other things but some people lose the whole focus of their blogs to just always having one random free thing after another. It’s. So. Boring.

  7. Julie
    July 11, 2013 | 8:33 am

    This is the most open and truthful post I have read in… well… probably ever. I used to feel a little badly and kind of shunned because I could not break into these Ambassador “cliques” to save my life. I kept wondering, “what do I have to do to be part of this group? Who do I have to know?” I started blogging as a way to get to know people and learn more about myself, and suddenly blogging made me feel worse. I couldn’t break into these groups, I was a needle in a hay stack of #***Chat’s, I was feeling defeated. I am, mostly, over that now. I blog less but blog more for enjoyment. And any left over feelings I had are about gone thanks to this post. You rock.

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 8:32 pm

      Thank you so much, Julie. I really agree that trying to break into those cliques is a fast way to feeling crappy and it sucks the fun out of blogging. I’m with you, I’d rather do my own thing and have fun than worry about the other people.

  8. She Rocks Fitness
    July 11, 2013 | 8:36 am

    High Fives to you for speaking your mind! I agree with you on a lot of your points and glad that you said them out loud. I’ve tried the Twitter chats, but honestly my brain is so FRIED at 9:00 PM and then when they’re done I cannot fall asleep, so I’ve stopped them. It’s too much too late. Like you, I’d rather be relaxing and possibly watching my guilty pleasures on Bravo! ;)
    She Rocks Fitness recently posted..Work It Off Wednesday GUEST POST!My Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 8:36 pm

      Thanks so much!
      True story, I have a bed time. I can’t do this 9:00 nonsense haha.

  9. Beth
    July 11, 2013 | 8:38 am

    *fistbump*

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 8:39 pm

      Thanks, Beth! I was happy to see you blogged again recently. I’ve always loved reading about your training!

  10. Paula @ Eat: Watch: Run
    July 11, 2013 | 8:39 am

    Great post! I was part of the same ambassador program and asked to get out about 6 months ago for many of the same reasons. But also, just annoyance in general at the constant hash tagging and promotion.

    I like “real” bloggers and when you constantly advertise and tag and say things you wouldn’t normally say otherwise to get chosen for promotions, I feel like that’s lost.

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 9:01 pm

      Thank you, Paula! I’ve been really surprised to see how many people have left that program recently!

  11. Kim
    July 11, 2013 | 8:47 am

    Really appreciate this post and Julie’s comment just before mine!
    Kim recently posted..Be Well Philly Boot Camp – Part 2My Profile

  12. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf
    July 11, 2013 | 8:53 am

    I love you and this post Carly. Seriously so glad that you wrote this and are doing what’s right for YOU. There’s so much to say and agree with here. Even though you are no longer part of Thou That Shall Not Be Named, I’m glad that you were so that I found you and your blog (and that we met at Fitbloggin).
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted..RealMy Profile

  13. Lynda @ Hit The Road Jane
    July 11, 2013 | 8:58 am

    Aaaaand this is why I love you. You say exactly what is on your mind and stand by it. Also, I think you did a good job of explaining your view point and still remaining polite :) Those twitter chats are always scheduled at annoying times too. I’m getting anxious just thinking about it. I love the idea of simplifying and just blogging and will be cleaning house a bit too. Great job Carly! xoxo0..
    Lynda @ Hit The Road Jane recently posted..12 Miles Say What?My Profile

  14. Sara
    July 11, 2013 | 9:00 am

    PREACH! This is so refreshing to read – I honestly get so annoyed when a person’s blog is a sponsored post every other day. I get that it’s livelihood for some people, but you’re really just shooting yourself in the foot in the end because readers don’t want that stuff unless they’re few and far between. Congratulations on freeing yourself from their clutches ;)

  15. abbi
    July 11, 2013 | 9:13 am

    :)
    abbi recently posted..The winning planMy Profile

  16. Kristen
    July 11, 2013 | 9:15 am

    Great post – I know you were nervous about it and I hope any negative response you get to this is minimal.

    Enjoy your newfound freedom from ambassadorship – and who knows, maybe you’ll still get some free yoghurt on occasion.
    Kristen recently posted..whine wednesdayMy Profile

  17. Melissa
    July 11, 2013 | 9:30 am

    I LOVE THIS POST.
    LOVELOVELOVE!
    That is all :)
    Melissa recently posted..The One with Justin Moore, Independence Brewing, and the Nuun Giveaway WinnerMy Profile

  18. Kris
    July 11, 2013 | 9:40 am

    I have to admit when I saw this blog title I thought “Oh here we go, this will be a whinefest” but I absolutely loved it. I detest both twitter chats and protein powder. Who has the time and why aren’t these people eating real food? Your body cannot digest 58 grams of protein in one breakfast drink even if you do add spinach so quit the bragging. Nice write up and good for you for your decision to be open about it.

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 9:23 pm

      Thanks, Kris! Totally agree on eating actual food…I enjoy it way too much to try to fake myself out with powders haha.
      Thanks again!

  19. Emily
    July 11, 2013 | 9:59 am

    This was why I missed your blog! I used to read healthy blogs all the time because I had a lot of time on my hands (boring job, and then brief unemployment). Then two things happened. First, I could no longer relate to most of the bloggers, either because I was bored to tears by the products placements or the fitness things had become their entire life- which I honestly don’t judge, but it’s just not for me.

    Second, my favorite bloggers (this one included) all started posting a lot less…because they had lives outside of the fitness realm and online. THAT I can relate to. So while for a while I felt a void from a lack of blog reading (luckily my job is much more interesting now!) I just really respect those who truly are just going about their lives, trying to be active and healthy when they can, and honestly showing that, warts and all. And I honestly look forward to the posts when they happen, instead of just scrolling idly through…

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 9:38 pm

      Thank you so much, Emily! I ended up cutting a lot of bloggers who I can’t relate to anymore out of my reader in the last few months. It makes it much easier to kind of focus on what I want to do instead of wondering what the heck was wrong with other people haha :)

  20. Starting Over | Adventure Year
    July 11, 2013 | 11:04 am

    [...] working out, running, and general fitness-y type stuff. Why did I stop? Head over to my dear friend Carly’s post. We’ve got some similar feelings on the subject. Basically, I wanted to start over and make [...]

  21. Ericka @ The Sweet Life
    July 11, 2013 | 11:06 am

    Ha, knew I was totally going to love this when I saw what you wrote on Facebook. And…I do! Though I think I enjoy some aspects of ambassadorship more than you, there have been a few times lately where I’ve been sick of thinking about my brand or whatever. I basically stopped participating in Twitterchats because I don’t have time and get nothing out of them. But hey if people like them, go for it!

    Anyway, we can all do what we want and I actually read every single word of this and you are a hilarious writer so do ti more often. Carly Bananas rocks!
    Ericka @ The Sweet Life recently posted..Awesome Arms: A Workout in the ParkMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 9:39 pm

      Thank you so much, Ericka! I’m so glad we were able to connect through blogging and tweeting! :) We really need to catch up sometime soon!!

  22. Tamara
    July 11, 2013 | 11:16 am

    I LOVE this post, on so many levels. Happy that you’re doing what you need to do to feel good about blogging.
    I’m working on being more me and less them too ;)
    Tamara recently posted..What makes a workout a workout?My Profile

  23. Mimi
    July 11, 2013 | 11:35 am

    Awesome post.

    All ridiculous, awful, soulless product shilling aside, the disordered eating that runs rampant in the “fitness” blogging circles is scary and the creepy encouragement from fan girls is downright disturbing. Instagram has become almost like those pro-anorexia sites.

    Thanks for the honest post and I seriously hope it opens some eyes out there…

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 9:47 pm

      I have unfollowed so many people on instagram who post nothing but odd food concoctions. Or people who only refer to their food in terms of how full it keeps them…like they’d only eat one gross weird meal a day if it would keep their hunger at bay. All I ever want to do is eat haha.

      Thanks again for the nice comment & tweet!! xo.

  24. Kelly @ Running Kellometers
    July 11, 2013 | 11:39 am

    I really enjoyed reading this post. The whole point about having a personal blog is writing about things you want to write about and doing things you want to do… right? If not, then what is the point? Congrats for standing up for what you think is right and what you want to do!
    Kelly @ Running Kellometers recently posted..Random Thoughts ThursdayMy Profile

  25. MegG
    July 11, 2013 | 12:11 pm

    Fantastic post. I agree with a good portion of what you wrote here and respect you for speaking your mind and explaining your decision. I take the good with the bad with the ambassador thing. The good is the relationships and the bloggers I’ve found and met in real life who are great people who I may not have found out about if it weren’t for the group. Twitter chats I only get on if I actually care about the topic and respect or I’m curious about the brand that is linked with it. Same thing for applying for any opportunities. I’m super small fries and while I sometimes get jealous of the folks with 5x as many page views as mine who actually get the cool opportunities, I remind myself that it’s only a hobby and a way for me to remember what my life was like at this moment.
    MegG recently posted..Monday post delayed!My Profile

  26. Elizabeth
    July 11, 2013 | 12:27 pm

    You got me good with the vegan Oreo’s thing. When my doctor (like, a real live MD) diagnosed me with a gluten allergy, a bunch of people commented on how gluten free diets are healthy and great for weight loss. All I could think was, Fritos are gluten free… Totally respect all that you laid out in this post, and greatly appreciate your sharing your views. In the end, you’ve gotta do you (sorry for quoting DJ Pauly D). xo
    Elizabeth recently posted..Today: An inch wide and a mile deep.My Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 9:50 pm

      Thanks, Elizabeth. So sorry to hear about the gluten allergy! I have two cousins who developed them later in life and it was hard to adjust.
      And I loved the Pauly D quote :)

  27. Krysten
    July 11, 2013 | 12:31 pm

    I love this post. The honesty here is everything I have wanted to say to some of the people at my gym. Thank you.

  28. Alicia at Poise in Parma
    July 11, 2013 | 12:34 pm

    I love you for being so “I’m going to say what I have to say and don’t care what anyone thinks” in this post. Rock on.

    I had to step back from blogging a bit this spring to figure out how I wanted to how I wanted to handle my sponsored posts. If it fits my brand – telling people about fit/healthy/unique things, usually with a Cleveland spin – then the justification makes sense for me. So I don’t reply/accept to every pitch, but am EXTREMELY happy with the brands I am working with b/c they get it.

    At the end of the day, you have to do what’s best for YOU, YOUR blog, YOUR time and YOUR readers. And with this post, I think you’re doing just that.

    I’m just happy to see you blogging again!!! xoxo

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 9:52 pm

      Thanks, Alicia! I definitely feel like you are one of the best bloggers at keeping everything relevant to the point of your blog! :)

  29. Kim
    July 11, 2013 | 3:20 pm

    I don’t even know how the ambassador stuff works but I say – Hooray for staying true to yourself and your blog! I love blogs that are about real people -fitness, life, fun – whatever – Just REAL!!!
    Kim recently posted..Are you Scared of the Dentist?My Profile

  30. Amanda @runtothefinish
    July 11, 2013 | 3:41 pm

    I have become very selective and will continue to work with brands that I already love because…well I’m using their stuff anyways. But I love your thoughts and standing by what you believe it. It’s much like why I didn’t do dietbet though everyone thought it was ok. For me it just didn’t feel right.
    Amanda @runtothefinish recently posted..Sugar Detox Diary Day 2 and 3: Emotional CravingsMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 11, 2013 | 9:55 pm

      DietBet is such a good example and I remember loving your post about why you thought it was a bad idea. There have been a few total headscratcher campaigns for me and that was one of them. The other was that awful one with Anytime fitness with the challenge to live on a food stamps budget. Horrifying.
      But, despite that, I’m really so thankful that I had the chance to connect with so many really fun, smart people who I wouldn’t have met otherwise. There’s always a silver lining :)

  31. Elle
    July 11, 2013 | 6:28 pm

    I have the greatest respect for those who stand by, and live, their ideals and personal beliefs. Good for you.

    I think it’s our differences that make the world go round and give us things to talk about!

  32. Becca
    July 11, 2013 | 10:25 pm

    I wanted to be an ambassador for like an entire minute when I first started Twitter and blogging. I watched a bit, read a bit, and then shook my head.
    Good for you for not letting the “popularity” outweigh how you want to proceed. No one has the right to tell you what to write, when, and certainly not how to live your life because they gave you something for free.
    And the self diagnosis thing- hell yeah. My biggest pet peeve (aside from people reposting links to their old blog posts numerous times a day, but that’s another rant altogether ;) )
    Becca recently posted..It will take everything you’ve got.My Profile

  33. Jen Ressler
    July 12, 2013 | 8:18 am

    You rock. Good for you for standing up for what you believe and need to do.

  34. Katy Widrick
    July 12, 2013 | 8:45 am

    REALLY interesting post and kudos for you for staying true to yourself. Honestly, I can’t imagine how anyone *could* be personally offended by this unless he/she was feeling ambivalent about his/her blogging already.

    I do monetize my blog, and I’ve definitely tipped the balance recently into more sponsored posts and paid campaigns. Certainly, I struggle with it, because after six years of blogging, I value my readers and don’t want to become someone who ONLY posts worthless, crappy commercials. I know that some of my audience feels I’ve gone too far and even when it’s hard to hear the criticism, I’m appreciative that people care enough about me (not my “brand”) to give me their feedback.

    Having said that, I’m at peace with my current blogging process, including the sponsorships. I absolutely hate when people blame being busy for doing or not doing things — I think you make choices and priorities, and those often change. But for ME right now…it’s just the truth. I’ve recently picked up a lot of extra responsibility at work, I have a 9-month-old who deserves as much of my attention as possible, blogging has gotten expensive (with higher traffic comes extra fees and bills…yikes!). The only way I can justify taking time on nights and weekends to keep the blog up — with a mix of sponsored and non-sponsored posts — is to at least break even. If my work can help pay for daycare or diapers, even better. The other option is for me to stop blogging for a while, and I’m just not ready to do that. This, to me, is the lesser evil. And I think (HOPE) that I’ve done a good job of trying not to be as cookie cutter as some other bloggers. I don’t copy and paste brand messaging. I take time to really put my own voice into the posts and give 100% honesty (even when it has gotten me in hot water on campaigns…).

    I’m in the ambassador group that you talk about and I value it a lot. But I’m also (and I think the group knows it) try to keep us all accountable. I’m a huge advocate for transparency, for following the rules (FTC, Google TOS, etc.), for disclosing all paid campaigns to readers on the blog and social media, etc. I can live with readers unsubscribing from my site, and I understand why some will. For those who stay, I want to be crystal clear about when I have been compensated in some way so they can choose to ignore those posts if they prefer, and never have to question what’s happening behind the scenes.

    Thanks for being such an important voice in this.
    Katy Widrick recently posted..Getting Less Casual, More BusinessMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 12, 2013 | 4:16 pm

      Hi Katy! Thank you so much for the thoughtful comment. I’ve always admired how very transparent you are when it comes to reviews and working with companies. I frequently use your blog as a resource when I’m trying to make sure I’m being clear about a sponsored post or tweet.
      Thanks again for lending your opinion to this discussion!

  35. mindy @ just a one girl revolution.
    July 12, 2013 | 9:03 am

    Echoing the masses to say that I loved this post, and appreciate your honesty! Also, I really want Oreos now…to go with my venti, sugar-filled drink from Starbucks…
    mindy @ just a one girl revolution. recently posted..the 3 miles I desperately needed.My Profile

  36. Maria @ lift love life
    July 12, 2013 | 9:06 am

    Love this post. While I definitely enjoy some of the perks of ambassadorship, I don’t enjoy it enough to completely give myself up to brands. Hence why I barely blog and participate in these kinds of things. I’ve been feeling the same things lately so it’s nice to see my feelings articulated a lot better and more hilariously than I can!

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 12, 2013 | 4:23 pm

      Thank you so much, Maria. I’ve been so surprised to see how many people feel the same way.

  37. Nathan the FFK
    July 12, 2013 | 9:09 am

    ” I’ll have a whole post on this later to keep this from turning into a novel but it’s just too much for me to watch people diagnose themselves with food allergies and intolerances without consulting a doctor (which by the way folks, food allergies and intolerances are autoimmune issues – please stop letting your internet friends diagnose you with them because occasionally you get stomach aches) in, what seems to be, the interest of making your blog more appealing to people who seem to have very disordered relationships with food.”

    PREACH!
    Loved this post. Great perspective.

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 12, 2013 | 4:28 pm

      Thank you so much for the comment, Nathan! I look forward to catching up reading your blog soon – I read a few posts today. It’s been crazy how many new people with great blogs have commented here in the last day or 2!

  38. Lisa @ The Splattered Apron
    July 12, 2013 | 9:17 am

    You’ve articulated all of the problems I have with that particular ambassador program and why I’m thinking about leaving as well. Some of the opportunities have been great (and I’ve “met” a lot of other great bloggers!) but since I have a full-time job, a husband and a child (with another on the way) my blog is just a hobby, I don’t feel the pressure to always be paid by brands for posts (I’m happy to eat free yogurt too!) and to post with the necessary frequency. I don’t even know how, but it’s been over a month since my last post–not intentional, but for me, I can’t always find the time to blog. I also don’t like to put up posts for the sake of posting–I want the content I put out there to be useful to others. When I first joined the program I was posting every day for posting’s sake and looking back, I don’t see much value in those posts at all. Good for you for staying true to yourself and doing what’s best for you!
    Lisa @ The Splattered Apron recently posted..Weekly Meal Plan 6.9.12My Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 12, 2013 | 4:31 pm

      Thanks, Lisa! It sounds like you have a lot of fabulous things going on in your life right now! It’s nice to “meet” another hobby blogger :)

  39. Erin (Running Tall)
    July 12, 2013 | 9:23 am

    Fantastic post and echoes what I’ve been feeling lately. While I do love the community of this ambassador group, the idea of selling myself as a brand behind their brand bothers me. Plus, my blog is most definitely not my career so why am I stressing over numbers, chats, link love etc? So happy you stayed true to yourself!
    Erin (Running Tall) recently posted..Unplugging and NaturopathsMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 12, 2013 | 6:42 pm

      Hi Erin! I think referring to it as a “brand behind their brand” is exactly the right way to describe it. It’s so nice to realize I’m not the only person who feels this way. I’ve been excited to find some new to me blogs – it looks like we’re kind of similar runners. Can’t wait to see how your half training goes :)

  40. Kara
    July 12, 2013 | 9:27 am

    My favorite part of this whole thing is how it’s all “He who shall not be named” but we all know exactly what you are talking about. They really have succeeded in making their brand distinctive.
    Kara recently posted..A rage fairy gets her wingsMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 11:26 am

      Branding at its best.
      Thanks for stopping by, Kara. I just read through a bunch of your blog posts – they’re so funny & your daughters are adorable. :) Good luck with the 50K this coming weekend!

  41. Danielle
    July 12, 2013 | 9:39 am

    A-freaking-men.
    Danielle recently posted..a berliner in nyc, day 3My Profile

  42. Elizabeth
    July 12, 2013 | 9:39 am

    Very interesting! This is my first time finding your blog, but I think there are so many truths to what you’re saying. I have a 2-year-old and have such a hard time finding time to do all the social media / blogging things that I’d like to do. I’m excited to get to know you more through your blog!
    Elizabeth recently posted..Fit Friday – Up for a Challenge?My Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 11:24 am

      Thanks for stopping by, Elizabeth! I’m so excited to have met so many new-to-me bloggers through this post!

  43. Michelle
    July 12, 2013 | 9:45 am

    I’m happy to see that more people feel this way! The hashtags, the twitter chats, the repeat product reviews — drive me insane. I’m all for reviewing products and getting free stuff (umm, see my current post lol), but it’s SO over the top and many times feels so fake. I like so many of the bloggers that are part of this community, but it just seems like they are all so brainwashed by it all. Thanks for keeping it real and not being afraid to break away.
    Michelle recently posted..Aquaphor Review and GiveawayMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 11:18 am

      Thanks, Michelle. There’s definitely a place for quality product reviews and even paid product reviews – but you’re totally right that lately it seems like everyone is brainwashed by the freebies.
      Thanks so much for stopping by!

  44. Cassie
    July 12, 2013 | 9:51 am

    I’ve never met you, but I think I’m in love with you. Is that weird to say?

    I think one of the unfortunate things about ambassadorships (with any brand/group/whatever) is that a lot of people join for the status symbol. And to keep up appearances of that status symbol, they jump at every single opportunity that comes in an email newsletter.

    I’m with a few groups, and what I like about it is that it’s 100% opt-in. There have been some programs that are absolutely perfect for me, my blog and my readers. But that’s only probably about 5% of what comes through the opportunity pipeline. I really enjoy being part of the programs and getting to connect with brands (and, honestly, the income is nice), but I think issues pop up when, like you said, those ambassador programs water down your own voice. And I feel no pressure to be constantly involved in the groups or their branding. My readers, my content, my voice is paramount. The freebies and paid campaigns? That’s way down on the list of priorities.

    Side note: I’m a total Twitteraholic and I’ve never, in my life, participated in a Twitter chat. Maybe if I stumbled onto one at 11am on a Sunday on some topic I was really into when I might have some freetime, but 9pm on a Friday? Dude, I am in my jammies, watching back-to-back-to-back episodes of some TV show on Netflix with a beer. Step away from my relaxation time.

    • Mariana
      July 12, 2013 | 10:25 am

      I just did my first Twitter party yesterday for a hotel company raffling off $50 visa gift cards. that’s a tank of gas homie! so I drank my chemical shake at my desk and answered a bunch of questions hoping I’d be picked for a card. It was alright, but only bc I was at work on my lunch break and not trying to participate in real life.
      Mariana recently posted..Product Review: BestPriceNutrition.comMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 12, 2013 | 6:22 pm

      It would only be weird if the feeling wasn’t mutual. I just clicked over to your blog and read about 6 posts in a row and have now amended my weekend plans to include making that cobbler. Yum. That is my kind of recipe!
      Thank you so much for the thoughtful comment & stopping by to say hi!!

  45. Emily (@TriRunner302)
    July 12, 2013 | 9:51 am

    Great post! I asked a certain #BRAND to remove me from their list of ambassadors more than a year ago, and they still have me listed on their site. Really irritates me. If you figure out how to remove yourself, please let me know.

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 12, 2013 | 6:48 pm

      Oh man, it didn’t even cross my mind that they wouldn’t pull me right off of their site. I just looked and I’m still there. Gross. I guess I’ll just keep email stalking them.
      Thanks for the tip and love the #BRAND use there ;-)

  46. Mariana
    July 12, 2013 | 10:21 am

    I’m new here and I ADORE this post. Also, since I’m using comment luv, the post that comes up for my blog is a product review. Awwwwkwarrrrrd.

    Oreos for life! And nachos <–my favorite food group. Keep on keepin' on, you had me at the GG gif.
    Mariana recently posted..Product Review: BestPriceNutrition.comMy Profile

  47. Deb Roby
    July 12, 2013 | 10:25 am

    Great post!

    When “ambassadorships” first starting hitting like cows pissing on rocks, I tried to become one. (why? I don’t honestly know.) However, I was always rejected because I don’t blog frequently enough.

    The more I see of them, the less I care. They seem to benefit someone other than myself.

    It’s funny about the twitter chats. On your side of the country they cut into the best part of the evening. On mine, the choice is make/eat dinner or chat. How is this a good thing for anyone? (though I truly miss the #Fitblog chats!)
    Deb Roby recently posted..We Change Little Without a PlanMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 14, 2013 | 11:14 am

      Thanks, Deb.
      I never thought about how bad the west coast timing must be! I take dinner pretty seriously haha.

  48. Amanda
    July 12, 2013 | 10:37 am

    My thoughts on this post in summation: word.

    But seriously, I love this. I wanted to be an ambassador for some brands and applied but always got rejected because I don’t post frequently enough or have enough traffic or whatever. But when I see the ambassadors completely lose their voice or only write sponsored posts, it’s really a turn off of those programs! I’m more into blogging for myself, even if I’m the only one reading.

    The only Twitter chat I can get on board with is #runchat, mostly because the people on the chat are super friendly and helpful, and the brands just give stuff away at the end instead of being too involved. Like one time I won a free entry to a half marathon in Virginia. That was cool.

    Also, Oreo’s are the bomb. The only thing is the black stuff in your teeth after, but whatever. Just wash it down with some beverage sans protein powder.
    Amanda recently posted..I Took a Pole Dancing ClassMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 14, 2013 | 11:16 am

      Thanks, Amanda. I also really like runchat, I just can rarely make the timing work.

  49. Samantha (@Brownie8727)
    July 12, 2013 | 11:07 am

    Love it!! I’ve been blogging for almost 4 years, and I have no where near the readers that I thought I would have. Mainly because I don’t write very often and I’ve been told I don’t write enough original content (I like to repost motivational quotes and whatnot). But even after 4 years blogging is still sort of ‘meh’ for me.

    I started because I wanted to be part of this amazing group of writers. I didn’t catapult into the limelight like I thought I would. I’ve recently reached about and became an ambassador for two different groups. One group I’m pretty sure takes whomever applies. The second is more difficult. I’m a race ambassador, but the farther into the deal I get, the less impressed I am. There is NO communication and my questions fall on deaf ears. I have a lot of friends, family, and coworkers invested in this race and their (the race and employees) lack of interest in me is very off putting. I’m just crossing my fingers I don’t regret it.

    Thanks again for being awesome and speaking your mind!!

  50. Lisa
    July 12, 2013 | 11:19 am

    I totally get this. I started blogging for fun and because I had a story to tell (losing 100 pounds) and as it grew and people reached out to me, I got caught up in it. It was so encouraging to hear from readers, and at first it was exciting being contacted by companies. But as the years went by, it seemed like the companies that contacted me were not in line with the healthy lifestyle I was “promoting” and I started saying no to most things. Now, three or so years later, I still blog but I put less effort in the “advertisement” aspect (i.e. contests, giveaways, twitter chats, etc) because like you, I have no time! I work full time, I go to the gym, I volunteer and try fit in time for friends and would like to spent time with my boyfriend and cat. Trying to get involved in the community is being less feasible unless I want to stay up all night!

    In the end, I am blogging to help people lost weight and be inspired by my story. That’s about it!
    Lisa recently posted..On a BoatMy Profile

  51. Brigid
    July 12, 2013 | 11:33 am

    Love it Carly. Good for you for prioritizing and figuring out what you value most with your limited time. As you may have noticed (or not :) ), I too dropped out of that ambassador program and then dropped blogging all together. I’ve got a busy job I like, a husband and baby I love, and want to focus on the face-to-face and not worry about twitter chats. And, I just don’t like protein powder :P

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 11:30 am

      Thanks, Brigid! I have noticed and have been enjoying pictures of your adorable baby! Congrats again!!

  52. Beka @ Rebecca Romas
    July 12, 2013 | 12:31 pm

    I cannot believe this is the first post I’ve read of yours. New reader subscribing! As a fairly new blogger, and an ambassador for only 1 brand simply because I use their products all the time and that I absolutely love – and 1 ‘group’ since love what they as people do, I find this VERYYYY interesting. Secondly, I am going to have to agree with you about the 1,000+ blogger brigade shatstorm of same-same posts when it comes to campaigns and / or products. In the past 6 months I have seen no less than 40 bloggers do this – (for example: receive a pair of free shoes in return for review from two competetive companies, but their sentiments on both are “best shoes evarrrr!” While the prospect of ‘free for try/review’ sounds awesome, I actually changed my mind on joining in on that “fun” – especially after hearing the ‘blacklash reprimanding’ that goes on when ambassadors don’t do 9 out of 9 required tasks, it’s not something that I want to get caught up in. My blog is MY blog and sometimes I don’t post for a week – so what? If I share a little brand love, it’s because I truly love what I’m eating/using/doing. Not because I’m required to.
    Beka @ Rebecca Romas recently posted..26 Things BackAtSquare0 Wants to KnowMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 11:39 am

      Thanks, Beka! I just LOLed at the competing brands of shoes thing…it’s really true and if I was the shoe company I’d be a little annoyed that everyone basically submitted the exact same review with just a slightly different selfie.
      Good luck with your MCM training!

  53. Meredith
    July 12, 2013 | 12:35 pm

    This is awesome. This is exactly how I feel about ambassador programs and social media. Stop being product whores and just do and write about what you love.
    Meredith recently posted..Week in ReviewMy Profile

  54. Amanda
    July 12, 2013 | 12:50 pm

    Oh my gosh… you’re speaking to my heart with this post. I’m not even a fitness blogger, but just a book blogger who occasionally blogs about fitness — though I do read a whole lot of fitness blogs. There’s nothing more annoying to me than to open up a post that starts with “this post is sponsored by…” I don’t care if you “love” Tide detergent or Chobani yogurt or Reebok, because I don’t 100% believe you when you’re being paid to write a post like that and opinions are ALWAYS positive.

    Unfortunately, I’m the one those bloggers are trying to speak to. The person who isn’t a fitness blogger and is trying to learn more about healthy eating/cooking/fitness. It’s a total turnoff and I’ve started unfollowing several of my formerly favorite bloggers because of it.

    Found you via Brittany @ A Healthy Slice of Life. She does occasional sponsored reviews the right way and I love her for it :)

    Thanks again for the post!

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 11:42 am

      Thank you so much for stopping by, Amanda. I just added your blog to my reader – I’m always looking for new books to read!

  55. Liz
    July 12, 2013 | 4:15 pm

    I’ve been blogging for five years and never got into this side of things – very interesting to actually read about it, as I didn’t know much! Thanks, Liz
    Liz recently posted..Off to try out a new CrossFit… (And then go for a run). Because…My Profile

  56. Lee
    July 12, 2013 | 4:16 pm

    I just want free yogurt too. And I want to write (or not write) about what I want to write about. So that’s why I never joined any of those programs. Also, like you said, for me, my blog is not my brand. It’s just a hobby. Sure, making (very minimal) money from it is cool, but it’s not the point of it for me.
    Lee recently posted..SlackingMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 11:49 am

      Thanks, Lee. I think I’ve made enough money blogging to buy a few sandwiches haha. It’s definitely not worth stress for that kind of big money ;-)

  57. Brittney @ Brittney Breathing
    July 12, 2013 | 4:22 pm

    First time reader here, and I’d just like to say THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU. I wanted to be a part of that network but at the time of applying “didn’t have enough traffic” to my site, even though they state explicitly we don’t judge your sites on traffic numbers alone.

    Anyways, I quickly got over it and was thankful I didn’t become a part of it because I realize now how much I would hate it. Let’s get real, most people that read healthy living blogs read a lot of the same people and if all of these people are shilling out the same stuff that gets B-O-R-I-N-G. I’ve actually been taking a break from blogging because I was getting so burnt out and couldn’t consistently post, and was getting kind of tired of keeping up with the whole community (commenting on other blogs, Twitter, Facebook, etc).

    I’m glad you shared this post and I will definitely keep reading!

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 11:54 am

      Thank you so much, Brittney. You’re definitely right about most HLBlog readers reading the same people. I never understood why all of the bigger bloggers chose to do the same things at the same times! You’d think they’d get more traffic if they’d divide and conquer :)

  58. Tiffany @ The Tiffany Project
    July 12, 2013 | 4:26 pm

    This is the first post of yours I’ve ever read, and I ADORE you! This has been on my mind A LOT lately (for months really) and I so appreciate your openness (as much as you can be) and your willingness to be your true self. It’s incredibly refreshing in today’s brand-rich, content-poor blogosphere.

    One thing I’ve found as I’ve been paying more attention, is that the people I follow and connect with the most on social media are not part of ‘the group’ and I would have thought for sure they would be! I guess that just goes to show that a label/badge means nothing when you’re talking about true connections.

    I wish I would have been able to meet you at FitBloggin’! Perhaps next year. :)
    Tiffany @ The Tiffany Project recently posted..Conference Hangover – FitBloggin’ 2013My Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 1:43 pm

      Thank you so much, Tiffany! I’m so looking forward to FitBloggin 2014 – I couldn’t go this year because I just started a new job and have been obsessively reading everyone’s recaps. That fashion show looked so cool – that’s awesome you participated!!

  59. Jody - Fit at 55
    July 12, 2013 | 10:02 pm

    I think I am in love with you! ;)

    A very well written post. We all have to do what feels right for us & those that are doing “it” – they are fine if it is fine for them. I really can relate to a lot of what you have written here. I am still part BUT I take things for free outside of that & don’t feel bad about it.. most inside ones are for goods only so…

    I have met amazing people thru this “group” so I feel really lucky on that front.
    Jody – Fit at 55 recently posted..Comment on Healthy Eating on the Go -GoStak GIVEAWAY!My Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 2:13 pm

      Thanks, Jody!
      There are some really great people that I’ve met through the group and I’m also really grateful for that.

  60. [...] knew when I opened Carly Bananas’ post called “Why I’m No Longer an Ambassador,” I’d be in for a thought-provoking read. One epically-long comment later, I figured I [...]

  61. Clare @ Fitting It All In
    July 13, 2013 | 8:21 am

    I think I just fell in love with you. I adore that you are so authentic and hilarious and honest when so many would be scared to write that for fear of backlash.

    I’ve been really stepping back from the “group” too and doing WAY less reviews because honestly lots of the products are just not for me. I don’t want protein powders or more ways to overexercise. I know it’s okay for some people, but it just doesn’t fit my lifestyle or goals right now. But I DO do some product reviews sometimes because …well..I’m a poor student and it pays the bills.

    Great post!

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 1:41 pm

      Thanks for stopping by, Clare! I just read your most recent post and really admire your honesty there. I hope everything keeps going well as you figure out what’s best for you!

  62. [...] free stuff in exchange for tweeting/facebooking/blogging about the brands or products.  And so Carly wrote about how she wont be involved in any of this branded speech from now on.  I agree with her on many points.  As I’ve mentioned before, I love free stuff as much as [...]

  63. Joanne
    July 13, 2013 | 11:07 am

    Love this!

  64. Joanne
    July 13, 2013 | 11:09 am

    I have been approached by a few companies. This gives me second thoughts.

  65. Maureen
    July 13, 2013 | 12:27 pm

    While I am part of said “Brand” I blog about what is important to me and not what others are trying to plug at the moment. I only works with brands that I already use on a regular basis or brands that I am interested in knowing more about.
    I appreciate the honesty in your post & definitely think that being an “Ambassador” works for some & not for others.
    Either way, it’s all love for you! :)
    Maureen recently posted..NKOTB Concert {The Package}My Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 2:19 pm

      Thanks, Maureen! I know it must work for some people – there are so many active followers, it just ended up not being right for me. :)

  66. Brittany @ Britt's Blurbs
    July 14, 2013 | 12:09 pm

    Love this post and your honesty! This is EXACTLY what the blogging community needs today- an eye opening post that gets to the root of many issues in the community. In an increasing digital era, we’re beginning to lose touch with who we are and what we believe in just for a few more “likes”, “followers” or “readers”. It’s so refreshing to see so many other bloggers respond positively to this post and care about sticking to who they are.
    THANK YOU for writing this!!
    Xoxo. Britt

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 2:24 pm

      Thank you so much, Britt. It’s been so nice to see that other people feel the same way & have kind of burnt out on the marketing side of blogging.
      By the way, I was just scanning through some of your recipes and oh.my.goodness… the bacon wrapped sweet potato bites! I’m so making those this week!

  67. Tara
    July 14, 2013 | 10:45 pm

    Thanks for vocalizing the thoughts running through my head! I participate in “certain ambassador programs,” but only as I see fit. I will not be persuaded to conform. I will not be made to feel anything other than myself. I do what’s best for me and for my blog at all times because a) free yogurt rules, b) Twitter chats suck and c) food is awesome. Bloggers that try to convey perfection via restrictive behaviors bore the bejeeezus out of me. Give me info, tell me truth, be yourself…that’s all I ask, and that’s all I do. If I can do that while participating in said “brand ambassador programs,” then I win. thanks again for a great post. Amen, sister.

  68. Katie
    July 14, 2013 | 11:32 pm

    I LOVE this post! What I love more is that you’ve received so much love for this post. Or at least it seems that way… Hopefully, the haters bit their tongues.

    Blogging costs me money and I am ok with that. It doesn’t have to but I choose to just enjoy it instead of seeking out sponsorship. At times, I would love to make money and leave my job but I can’t bring myself to squeeze into that mold you speak of.

    I have been thinking about writing a whole post about this but I’ll just say it in a line or two here: It is completely disingenuous when everyone receives their shipment of a product on the same day, thus filling my IG and Twitter feeds with photos of boxes with a brand name on the side and the same hashtag.

    I have no issue with the brands or the bloggers… but can’t we find a better way? Spread out the shipments? Encourage more unique content and hashtags? Some kind of individulity!

    Bravo to you for doing what YOU want. Keep it up :)
    Katie recently posted..This Mythical Creature We Call LIFEMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 3:01 pm

      Thanks so much, Katie! I’m also so surprised at the support this post received. For the most part, it’s been hater free. :)

  69. misszippy
    July 15, 2013 | 7:25 am

    I love your raw, honest posts! And your hutzpa for not worshiping at the feet of the brands, who in the end, kind of exploit us anyhow!

    And I am so with you on the fad of food intolerances that are self-diagnosed. I am so done with reading that..it’s toxic.

    Cheers, Carly!
    misszippy recently posted..MAF test day bluesMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 2:57 pm

      Thank you so much, Amanda! I am honestly so surprised that people didn’t come at me with pitchforks raised after this. It’s been a real relief to see I’m not the only person who has these gripes!

  70. Natalie
    July 15, 2013 | 7:37 am

    Good for you and thank you for your honesty!!
    Natalie recently posted..Marathon Training – Week 3My Profile

  71. Megan
    July 15, 2013 | 7:41 am

    I just found your blog because this link was tweeted and I kind of love this. I’ve been debating back and forth over what I want to do with my blog, and you’ve expressed something I’ve been seeing and feeling as of late. I have some thinking and planning to do!
    Megan recently posted..Keepin’ It RealMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 2:55 pm

      Thanks for stopping by, Megan. I love your most recent post on speed and how it’s all relative. I need a reminder in that one lately!

  72. Colleen
    July 15, 2013 | 7:47 am

    You just put into words everything I have been thinking about and being frustrated about for the last 6 months. I barely blog anymore because the fun has been sucked out of it! Great post!

    p.s. I agree; free yogurt is fucking awesome.

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 2:48 pm

      Thanks so much, Colleen. I hope you can find some more reasons to blog. I just read a bunch of your posts and they were so funny. :)

  73. Kasandra
    July 15, 2013 | 7:52 am

    This post. I love you. Youre amazing. That is all.
    Kasandra recently posted..‘Ish Non Runners Be Sayin’!My Profile

  74. katie
    July 15, 2013 | 8:40 am

    Thank you so much for your post! I am new into the fitness blogging world and noticed how the corporate sponsorship completely takes over. Eat your oreos girl. Best of luck to you!!

  75. Lori
    July 15, 2013 | 8:42 am

    Amen, sister! Completely agree with everything you wrote. More power to you for saying what so many others are thinking.
    Lori recently posted..Friday Night LightsMy Profile

  76. Empty Nest | A Day In The Life
    July 15, 2013 | 9:04 am

    [...] Bananas – I just discovered her this morning but this post made me an instant [...]

  77. Gina @ Running to the Kitchen
    July 15, 2013 | 9:37 am

    Tons of respect for you for writing this. I’m still part of the group you’re referencing but so much of this rings true and is a lot of the reason I stay on the periphery of the group, engaging only when it really fits or makes sense to me. Rock on, girl ;)
    Gina @ Running to the Kitchen recently posted..Spinach ricotta torteMy Profile

    • Tara @ A Daily Dose of Fit
      July 15, 2013 | 11:24 am

      Yay, Gina! You take the same approach that I do. I thought I was the only one to tread so lightly. I interact, but only as I see fit and only if it seems right for my site. Otherwise, I just keep on keepin’ on. Individuality rocks and is what interests me…

  78. Liana@RunToMunch
    July 15, 2013 | 9:44 am

    All respect!

    I cracked up more loudly than I should reading it!
    Liana@RunToMunch recently posted..2013 Appleman Triathlon Race RecapMy Profile

  79. Karen
    July 15, 2013 | 10:30 am

    I love this post!! I echo many of your same thoughts!!

  80. Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen)
    July 15, 2013 | 2:32 pm

    I don’t even know how to express to you how much I love this post! I am so tired of all of the sponsored advertisement pushes everywhere through that crazy ambassadorship program. I connected with these people and thought I was getting to know them and now there are nonstop posts on the same product on the same day when they have a huge push go out for a new product. It’s annoying and frankly, when I see these, I don’t read them! I really appreciate you saying this out loud!

    Sadly, I am the girl with the family that has food intolerances and allergies that have been diagnosed by a doctor. I started blogging as a way to connect with people with shared interests in order to learn more and create a place of shared information and friendship. I feel like that has been lost recently through all of the ads on blogs through ambassadorships. I’m not saying don’t share foods you love, but the quality of products becomes questionable when everyone says the same thing with no variations. It just loses its validity.

  81. Julie
    July 15, 2013 | 4:37 pm

    I seriously love this. I have literally unsubscribed to so many blogs whose ladies are so bass-akwards in their eating and their obsessiveness over foods, while hashtagging themselves as these ambassadors and #cleaneating BS. Whatever floats your boat, but don’t try to tell this physician that what you are doing is #cleaneating or #healthy. Black and white, it isn’t, and I am SO against all this clique-ish crap, it’s so high school and I’m sorry, it seems they pimp themselves out and sell themselves and their readers out for major free stuff. I’ve paired down my blog roll to completely eliminate most of the “top dogs” anymore because their content is totally sellout, completely unrealistic in terms of training and eating, and always has a tinge of “I’m better than most of you all, look how great I am” ness. Over blogs mostly as a whole as far as healthy living ones, these ladies have ruined it for me as well.

  82. Andrea
    July 15, 2013 | 7:09 pm

    I also came over here from a link (thx Miss Zippy!) and look forward to future posts :) I, too, am/was/I dunno? part of that ambassadorship and very recently just turned off all my FB groups, and Tweets/Instagram accounts of those I was ‘required’ to follow. After a year, I’ve found some cool Tweeps/blogs – but other than that, I got NOTHING out of it other than listening to rants on FB, or seeing my Twitter feed blow up at the same time over the same crap. Funny enough, within days after taking the badge off my blog & info off my Twitter, two different brands reached out to me. Anyway, good for you!
    Andrea recently posted..I Have The Sads TodayMy Profile

  83. Julie @ ROJ Running
    July 15, 2013 | 7:52 pm

    Holy comments batman, look’s like you woke up the bees. I love that you were honest, and I sometimes think about leaving the comfort of the ambassador world. There are times I know I will NEVER fit their mold and it frustrates me to no end. Then there are times I realize there are people I never would have found or met if it wasn’t for the groups. Maybe I’ll never be elite or even anything special, but I’ll take what I can get and if you weren’t getting anything then it’s time to move on. IMHO. I will say two things though 1) I’m totally with you on the sometime I just want free yogurt. 2) When I read the food allergy part I took it way too personally. Like made me want to cry, got overly defensive personally. My food allergies/issues are real, but most don’t manifest in ways that can be officially picked up by traditional medical testing. I am constantly being told my people (even some in the medical field) they aren’t “real” if they can’t be tested in certain ways. Not sure what I should call it then, but when I eat certain food I get itchy or dizzy or have terrible sudden onset stomach issues and can’t leave the house. For me telling people it’s an allergy is the easiest way to explain. That being said it bothers me to no end when people go gluten free or similar diets simply for the WOW factor or the popularity factor. OK OK I’m done. Hope we’re still friends. ( ;
    Julie @ ROJ Running recently posted..Race Report : Run Drenched ColumbusMy Profile

    • Carly D. @ CarlyBananas
      July 15, 2013 | 8:57 pm

      Oh Julie, I’m so sorry that part of the post made you feel that way!! I’ve seen the pain you go through to try to find something to eat that won’t make you feel bad and I couldn’t imagine you doing that for the fake out/blog traffic/thinly veiled eating disorder factor. I definitely do understand some food allergies and intolerances are hard to diagnose and that’s not what I was talking about at all & I should have been more clear. I was definitely speaking in the sense you mentioned there at the end, the people going for the trendy wow factor and they’re all like “Sometimes I’m tired and I’ve had a headache once or twice…so I’m going to decide to cut out all gluten. And dairy.”
      I really do apologize that what I wrote made you feel bad! I hope what i just wrote cleared it up a little! xoxoxo.

  84. Kim @ Racing Bananas
    July 15, 2013 | 9:26 pm

    Wow. This post is awesome and I truly appreciate your honesty! As a “new” blogger, it seems like everyone is an ambassador to something and get all these amazing perks – it’s eye opening and refreshing to hear the other side of it all.
    Kim @ Racing Bananas recently posted..MIMM: Just “Doing Me”My Profile

  85. adena
    July 15, 2013 | 9:57 pm

    Really enjoyed this blog post. I started reading blogs a few years ago, focusing on triathlon/running blogs as a way to motivate myself and of course I started my own. I have met a lot of amazing people thru blogging and twitter. It’s made me sad to see some blogs that I really enjoyed turn into commercials for products. I read people because I enjoy reading about them, and I do like to hear that they liked this product or that product but when a product is mentioned or when every post is ‘hey I’m an ambassador!!’ I’m out. I was lucky enough to score a sponsorship with a company who’s product I love, aside from that I like to post links to local places or services that I love.

    Really appreciated your honesty in this post, looks like I have some reading to do here.
    Cheers
    adena recently posted..Happy Birthday HunterMy Profile

  86. Joy
    July 16, 2013 | 4:20 am

    I love this post…
    I will NEVER be a big enough blogger to get anything free and I don’t care.
    The whole Oreos thing? Yeah I tell people that all the time when they say stupid things like “you’re vegan? Must be so easy to keep weight off” I remind them that Oreos and potato chips are vegan but still crap! Ohhh anyway (got lost there)
    What I REALLY wanted to write was the allergy thing is one of my greatest pet peeves! I have a friend (irl) who tells me she’s allergic to rice – because her (quack) chiropractor told her so even though I was with her when the allergist told her she wasn’t and then she’s “allergic” to milk when we go out and makes sure that the restaurant knows it BUT if her husband is going out for ice cream welllllllllll that’s different! For those of us with allergies it’s insulting – okay my rampage is over!
    Enjoy your baseball games (though we root for different teams), Oreos and boyfriend (dog too) because really that’s all that matters!
    Joy recently posted..Hello MondayMy Profile

  87. [...] Carly, I’m also pretty disillusioned to all the ambassadorships that seem to be going around the [...]

  88. Bean Bytes 46
    July 16, 2013 | 9:30 am

    [...] read of the week: Why I’m no longer an ambassador via Carly [...]

  89. AlexandraFunFit
    July 16, 2013 | 11:36 am

    I enjoyed reading your post AND all the comments. Both help me become a better blogger. As to the ambassadorship thing, we love meeting new people and learning from each other. We definitely want to make money from our blog (we have kids in college), yet we try to offer valuable information in exchange, as we are experts in our field (which isn’t nutrition, although we do have strong opinions based on research about what does and doesn’t work in the long run). When we see drama or requests that are counter to who we are, we stay out of it. As we are older than most of the bloggers we know, we sometimes have pointed out discrepancies we’ve seen over time between the words and the deeds. We’ve been yelled at for that. No problem; we just have learned to keep doing our own thing and let others do theirs. Just as our followers can decide if they want to trust our opinions & advice, so can we decide whether to trust the promises people make to us. I think you did a great job of stating why things aren’t right for you without attacking others. Thanks for letting us know we aren’t alone in some of our conclusions.
    AlexandraFunFit recently posted..Transformative Travel: 11 Helpful Tips for TravelersMy Profile

  90. Kari @ Running Ricig
    July 16, 2013 | 12:49 pm

    This is your first post I’ve read and now I want to be best friends (but not in a creepy way). I wrote a similar post a while ago about leaving, what I think is, the same group (though, you put it a bit more eloquently and I named names). I love it.
    Kari @ Running Ricig recently posted..Why we have a dogMy Profile

  91. Alyssa
    July 16, 2013 | 3:28 pm

    I’ve never been to your blog but my friend Kari (above commenter) emailed me your post and it is a great one! It seems to hit all the reasons I can’t stand reading so many of the blogs I used to love. The whole I’M HEALTHIER THAN YOU BECAUSE I EAT PROTEIN POWDER AND SERVE MYSELF ICE CREAM IN A RAMEKIN ONE TIME PER MONTH ONLY….over it.
    Alyssa recently posted..Dinosaurs and stumpsMy Profile

  92. Jane
    July 16, 2013 | 3:36 pm

    I love this, and will definitely be subscribing to your future posts. My favorite bloggers are the ones that actually voice THEIR opinion, and girl, you got one and I love it. Kudos to you!
    Jane recently posted..5 Weeks Out.My Profile

  93. Krista @ Tiny n Fit
    July 17, 2013 | 8:00 am

    This Post- LOVE IT! Thank you for shining a light on the unhealthy aspects of the ‘healthy blog’ community. Yes there are good parts of it, but I agree that the way it recently has blown up with the IG food photos (with unhealthy comments to it like you mentioned- wish I could get full on 3 almonds!) just highlights how disordered the community can be. Great post!
    Krista @ Tiny n Fit recently posted..Nut and Dairy Free Protein Balls!My Profile

  94. Beth
    July 18, 2013 | 11:12 am

    Oh gurl. I found this post on Twitter & I’ve gotta say you nailed it. I can’t stand reading 900 different blogs all about the same product. Also, with all of the reviews on EVERYTHING being SO amazing, we, as readers, really have no idea if a product is truly good or not. I only write reviews if I genuinely like something, not just because it was free. Also, is the Gluten allergy new? I feel as though it just came out of nowhere. Odd. Anywho, great post. Judging by the comments you speak for a lot of us not in the “club.” Thanks.

  95. Five Things Friday 7.19.13
    July 19, 2013 | 6:33 am

    [...] Why I’m No Longer An Ambassador <–one of the most authentic, great posts I’ve seen in a while. Lots of it is true and I agree with. I’m not sure if it necessitates completely stopping product reviews or just being more selective (like I’ve tried to be) but regardless, good post. [...]

  96. Jen
    July 22, 2013 | 1:16 pm

    Good for you!!!

  97. Starting A Blog Over: Adventure Year
    August 10, 2013 | 9:05 am

    […] working out, running, and general fitness-y type stuff. Why did I stop? Head over to my dear friend Carly’s post. We’ve got some similar feelings on the subject. Basically, I wanted to start over and make […]

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