Chiseled D&G models plastered on the side of a bus slink passed me during "rush hour"........ I turn my head and a billboard of David Gandy's crotch covered only by his new signature underwear/nightwear range at M&S basically pokes me in the face........ Whilst on TV, some guy who's never had a hair out-of-place in his life tells me that "he's not going to be the person he's expected to be anymore" (fight that system, you rebel!) is selling me a smelly liquid to spray on my neck in order for me to be more attractive.
We are surrounded by it. We're feeling just as much pressure as women to look better. In case you think it's all one-way, it's not - men strive for that body beautiful too.
Times Have Changed
Gone are the days when men were called a "girl", "poof" or having a vagina for using a moisturiser or scrub. I thank my lucky stars that my mother engrained a good face-care routine into my brain from the age of 14. And, despite getting teased to no end by my mates when I went away on camp for the first time, I now look the sprightly age of 30 instead of 32. I sure showed them. Thanks mum!
Almost 20 years later, everything's so much more accessible for us these days. No longer do we have to treat male grooming products like condoms or Playboys where we have to buy a bunch of stuff we don't need to cover up what we're really buying. Anywhere from Clarins to Dove can we grab something off the shelf specifically made for men regardless of the budget, so there is no reason why we shouldn't be able to invest in our faces instead of stealing from our girlfriends all the time.
On the Same Page
Women might have their Glamour and Cosmo mags, but we have GQ, Esquire, Men's Health and Men's Fitness that show us beautiful £2000 bespoke suits, revolutionary face scrubs and "9 simple ways to get build rock-hard abs". These magazines wouldn't fly off the shelves if there weren't men out there (like me) willing to hand over their hard-earned cash to try and self-improve our wardrobes and physical appearance.
Let's Get Physical
We're under no illusion that the majority of women would prefer someone with a "six-pack" as opposed to a "keg". Women aren't plastering 45 year-old men with beer bellies on their Facebook Page, they're posting pics of Channing Tatum with his shirt off shaking his "groove thing" during "Magic Mike"...... And that puts pressure on us.
Adjusting your lifestyle to get fit and lose weight is one thing, I can tell you that maintaining it takes a lot more motivation, and here are some of the basic things I go through to do it...... And it's not glamorous.
A 5-6 day a week gym routine of 2 hours per workout which I try to fit my life around.
I spend £75 a month on protein supplements. £15 on creatine alkaline. £15 on omega 3, multivitamin, and magnesium supplements. All of these are taken at certain times of the day.
I have a pretty rigorous diet which can sometimes be antisocial when it comes to eating out or at friends' places.
Be Who You Want To Be
Being fit is a big part of my lifestyle. But that's my choice. I get a lot of people judging me on how much time and effort I put into trying to maintain it. For all those that feel self-conscious about looking/feeling unfit, I can tell you I'm just as conscious for people pigeon-holing me as a "pretty boy" or "gym junkie". But that's their problem. Plus, I know that whole stereotype goes out the window once people actually get to know me.
Sure, we might strive for the body beautiful and despite all the pressure placed upon us from all angles, the most important thing is that we're comfortable with who we are, no matter whether that's after a rigorous gym and diet or not. If you're happy being you - then keep doing what you're doing, because you're clearly doing it right!