Starting a weight loss blog is a wonderful way of sharing your weight loss journey with other people who are struggling to lose weight and stay fit in their busy lives. It can also be a great way for you to keep track of your own progress so you can hold yourself accountable if you fall off the wagon.
Blogs like Nerd Fitness, Run Eat Repeat, Diane Carbonell – Weight Loss Expert, Lose Weight by Eating and The Fitnessista were all started by people who wanted to lose weight, get healthier and teach other people to do the same. They launched their own weight loss blogs and are now earning full-time incomes teaching other people how to lose weight.
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If you have thought about keeping a weight loss or diet blog, then this post is for you. We will show you how to setup WordPress using Bluehost, pick a theme for your blog, recommend some plugins for keeping track of your weight loss and for posting recipes online. Read on for our full guide to creating a weight loss blog…
How to Start a Weight Loss Blog with Bluehost & WordPress
Bluehost is a web hosting provider. We’re going to learn how to purchase a server for you to host your site on. WordPress is what you’ll use to build your site, so we’re also going to show you how to install WordPress on your server through Bluehost.
Getting Started with Bluehost
Click here to open Bluehost in a new tab, and click the green Get Started Now button:
Feel free to grab the Plus or Pro plan if you think your site will need that much firepower within the next year, but we recommend starting with the Basic plan. It has more than enough space and bandwidth for new blogs:
Come up with a name for your new blog, and enter it as one phrase in the New Domain box. Think of another if the one you want is already taken, or think of a different way to say it:
The next step should feel familiar to you if you’ve ever made an online purchase. Just enter your name and billing address:
You’ll see the boxes for Site Backup Pro, Search Engine Jumpstart and Sitelock Security – Find are ticked by default. Untick these boxes, and backup your site with such plugins and services as:
And protect your site with such plugins and services as:
You should, however, make sure the Domain Privacy Protection selection is ticked. The billing information you entered in the previous step will be made public if you don’t.
The last step requires you to enter your payment information. Enter your credit/debit card information, or click the More Payment Options if you’d like to sign into PayPal. Confirm that you’ve read Bluehost’s Terms & Conditions, and submit your order.
Sign into your new Bluehost account to enter the Hosting home screen. Scroll down until you find the Website section, and click Install WordPress:
Click Check Domain:
Wait for the installer to check your domain.
Choosing a Theme for your Weight Loss Blog
Design is a key component of every blog. The right theme can truly give your blog that personal touch and provide your readers with a great environment to consume content from. Our Stacker theme is a wonderful contender for a weight loss blog.
Stacker is a Pinterest-style theme available here at ThemeFurnace. It relies on featured images to display your latest blog posts in a masonry-grid format, which is very similar to how Pinterest organizes its content. Style changes can be made with a few simple clicks using the live theme customizer that ships with every WordPress installation.
Fitnesys is a responsive Fitness Blog WordPress Theme that was developed to run flawlessly across a variety of devices and web browsers.
Epilog is a stunning blog theme by TeslaThemes. It uses a minimalist, modern, clean-cut style and uses different post formats to give you plenty of different ways to share your knowledge on beauty, makeup and style with the world.
Blogojoy is a simple, minimalist blog theme by TeslaThemes. The design cuts out unnecessary elements so you can use beautiful imagery and your own words to bring your blog to life.
Zillah is a simple WordPress theme that uses a minimalist design. It gives bloggers a stylish way of sharing their latest posts. Beauty bloggers can use it to display their latest posts in an aesthetically-pleasing way.
Installing Your Theme
Once you decide what theme you want, purchase it if need be, and download it. Log into the WordPress admin account of your site, hover over Appearance, and select Themes:
Click the Add New button at the top of the page:
Click the Upload Theme button at the top of the page:
Click Choose File, and select the ZIP folder you downloaded for your theme. Click Install Now:
Click Activate to activate your theme:
Plugins to Install
There are a number of different plugins weight loss bloggers might use to create content. These do include weight loss and fitness tracking plugins, but they also include recipe card and social networking plugins.
These plugins enable you to use different styles and formats for different types of posts. This means you can use a recipe card plugin to write a post about your latest low-fat recipe and a social networking plugin to build an online community of readers who want to discuss tips and share their latest weight-loss milestones.
Weight Loss Tracker is a unique plugin that lets you keep a record of your weight loss progress. Having access to this information gives you accurate data to work with when it comes to figuring out how effective a diet or fitness plan is. Imperial and metric units are supported.
FatSecret is one of the most popular calorie-counting/weight-loss trackers on the market. It’s popular among mobile users, and you can now insert this tracker’s API on your WordPress site with the help of this plugin. This plugin lets you keep separate diaries for food intake, the exercises you do as well as your weight history.
CF Whiteboard was designed for crossfitters, but it essentially allows you to create Workout of the Day blog posts by allowing you to show your readers what you did during your workout, how long you did them for and other important factors that contributed to your workout. The best part is how this plugin allows you to do so in a way that’s visually appealing as opposed to a blank white page with a few bulleted lists.
Timetable Responsive Schedule is a timetable plugin that lets you set up an aesthetically-pleasing schedule to display on your site. Use this plugin to display your personal workout schedule, or use it to set up a fitness challenge you want your readers to take. You can even use it to set up a diet plan.
Recipe Card Plugins
Recipe card plugins are another type of plugin weight loss bloggers may find useful. These plugins allow you to create custom post types for recipes that separate your recipes into different sections, including a photo of the dish, a list of ingredients, prep/cook time, instructions and more.
Some of these plugins even allow you to include nutrition facts so you can keep your readers informed on what they’re eating.
Social Networking Plugins
When you blog about health, fitness and weight loss, you’ll find yourself with an audience of like-minded people, all of whom are trying to reach the same goals as you. Your relationship with these followers will consist of you publishing blog posts and sending out emails only to have them comment on your blog posts and reply to your emails.
If you use a social networking plugin, you can use your audience to turn these one-on-one encounters into an entire community of people who support with one another.
bbPress is a forum plugin. It gives you the ability to turn a page on your website, or even your entire website, into a forum. Users can sign into this forum, start topics and converse with one another about health, fitness, recipes, weight loss, life and more.
BuddyPress lets you turn WordPress into Facebook. That’s the simple definition, at least. It’s a social networking plugin that lets users create user profiles they can use to create and respond to topics in forums, private message other users, create and join groups, and more.
There are a number of different paths you can take when it comes to photography. If you have a flagship mobile device, feel free to use that until you find room in your budget to buy a proper DSLR camera.
Here are a few entry-level DSLRs:
These camera kits come with 18-55mm lenses, which will set you up for a while. Try to buy a 50mm 1.8 lens when you can. Just keep in mind that the quality of your lens is more important than the quality of your camera, so focus on adding more lenses to your collection rather than buying a new camera when you feel it’s time to upgrade.
Try to use natural light where possible. This means taking a photo near a window in a well-lit room more than it means taking photos in direct sunlight. There is such a thing as too much light. Build your own DIY lighting set up if you need artificial light, or purchase professional equipment if it’s in your budget.
Make sure you pick up a USB card reader for $5-$20 if your computer doesn’t have an SD memory card port. You’ll use one of these cards to transfer photos from your camera to your computer.
Lastly, sign up for an Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom Creative Cloud account for editing.
Feel free to stick to your mobile device when it comes to Instagram. It’s more efficient than taking a photo with a DSLR, uploading it to your computer, editing it, uploading it to a cloud storage server before uploading it to Instagram.
Follow other smaller weight loss bloggers after you fill out your profile and add some posts. Once you do, post on a daily basis, and use appropriate hashtags, such as #weightloss, #transformationtuesday and #fitness. Check out this post by Post Planner to learn about 87 Awesome Fitness Hashtags for Instagram.
How to Make Money Blogging
There are three main ways to make money blogging, and you can use all three of them on your blog. The first way is affiliate marketing. If you review a product, create a workout tutorial or write a post on your blog, you can use an affiliate link to link to those products. If your reader clicks on that link, you’ll earn a commission if they complete a purchase.
An example would be if you reviewed a new fitness tracker and used an Amazon affiliate link to link to that fitness tracker’s product page on the site. You’ll earn a percentage of what your readers pays if they purchase the product using your link.
Another way to make money blogging is through the use advertisements and sponsorships. This lets you “lease” ad space on your site, whether that means Google Adsense or ads from sponsors, which should be brands you trust.
The third way to make money blogging is by creating your own products, such as ebooks, courses and membership sites.
We hope this tutorial has made the intimidating task of learning how to start a weight loss blog a little less daunting. Just remember to post regularly when you do get everything set up, and be active social media platforms like Instagram and Pinterest.