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Tech News - Researchers found that the prospect of workout goals being shared on social media led fewer people to set weekly goals.
  
At the same time, the sharing led to emotional encouragement, logistical assistance and accountability that may have helped study participants, who all were classified as obese, up their step counts by an average of about a half mile per day.
  
"One of the most common recommendations for people who want to lose weight is to share their plan with family and friends. The theory is that being accountable to, and encouraged by, their social support system will increase their chances of reaching goals," said Paul Resnick, the Michael D Cohen Collegiate Profession of Information at the University of Michigan.
  
But the researchers at the University of Michigan and University of Washington found that sharing was a two-edged sword.
  
"Public accountability is great, but not if it keeps you from making commitments in the first place," Resnick said.
  
In the 12-week, randomised, controlled clinical trial, the researchers gave 165 people classified as obese FitBit pedometers and access to a custom website they had created.
    
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