It's all about getting ready for summer, summer bodies, summer abs and getting that bikini body of course. It happens every year, pre summer, pre Christmas and of course the new year shape up and the every cleverly posed question, are you ready? A woman I really admire in both wit and in her style is Dawn O'Porter, last week posters flooded the Tube in London-asking the question 'Are you beach body ready?" to which Dawn simply put " Oh f*ck off!
My sentiments exactly..... Ultimate bodies, with rippling abs, a tight pert ass, a thigh gap, hips of a 12 year old boy and breasts that stand up on their own are the societal fantasy of what women should look like, but the stark reality is that we do not in fact look like this. Shocking I know.
This is just the ideal that is out there, spurred on my those goddesses from Victoria Secret (who just cannot be real but are) This new body type ideal is not limited to us ladies, men are feeling the pressure too. The six pack, well in fact now I think it's' a 12 pack, defined shoulders, strong arms and muscular quads are all high in demand and a pre requisite for your beach holiday or just for another shameless selfie (their words not mine) on Instagram. Growing is the daily posts of men casually standing in their jocks you know just taking a quick quad check...
The ascetic of physical beauty is really turning a corner and is becoming very apparent in people's lives now. I cannot get over how much the ideal body type is changing; it's all about muscle tone, definition, looking lean, paleo, not paleo, cheat meals, squatting and macros. It's intense to say the least.
Now whilst the world and its mother is on the hunt to have a six pack, (because as you know if you have a six pack well then everything will be brilliant and your life will be perfect) could we not change the message here and why not simply get ready for life. There is a complete divide between the very dedicated people who are training and eating a very clean diet to those who are training 2-3 times a week, having a few sneaky chocolate bars, glasses of wine and takeaways and wondering why they don't seem to look like the people they follow on Instagram!
I truly respect anyone who trains and maintains a healthy lifestyle but just wish we could get the message of health out to everyone. Having abs yes is great, but really their importance to your health and your life will not play the pivotal role you once thought.
Being fit, healthy and active is the most important thing, so can you run 5km, lift even half your weight in a dead lift or could you run for a bus and not be out of breath? How is your blood pressure? How is your relationship with food? How is your relationship with yourself? Are you happy? Do you value yourself? Do you take time to set aside moments of your day just to breathe, to goal set, to change your state, to experience life, to allow yourself to be happy? These are all the questions you should ask yourself when you look at your overall health.
The balance between your mindset and your physical health is inextricably linked. If you want to get better at the physical you have to first connect with your inner voice, your mind and the power of your own thoughts. Today my friend said he wanted to get back to eating better, not to find his summer abs but to feel better in himself, to have that natural energy that you can only get from eating fresh wholesome foods full of nutrients. Being healthy, is about looking after yourself, so what you eat, how you connect with training, the people you surround yourself with, the words you tell yourself and the way you give back to both yourself, your family, friends and your community.
So instead of getting summer ready, let's get life ready and be the best we can be today, tomorrow and for the rest of our lives.