There’s no pressure to exercise in lockdown

Women of all shapes and sizes standing together in black underwear smiling and laughing

Exercise and lockdown don’t come hand in hand

If I could have predicted three things to happen in lockdown it would be that 1. Tiktok would blow up, 2. There would be more baking happening than bake off and 3. Our eyes would turn square from the amount of Netflix series we would get through. However, the one thing that I didn’t predict was the insane amount of pressure that we have all put on ourselves to come out of lockdown rocking a six pack and peachy bum.

It seemed as soon as lockdown was announced, everyone became obsessed with home workouts and fan girl-ing over Joe Wicks; which has pulled in over two million views by the way. Before the Covid-19 outbreak social media was full of teeth whitening adverts and hair extension kits and now every other post seems to be an influencer posing in their gym shark co-ord or promoting their zoom gym sesh. For some reason lockdown has become a competition for who can lose the most weight or gain the most muscle. The way we look in our lockdown bodies has become a trending topic for who can look the best or pose in the best instagram picture. (*Hint hint* like how the world has gone crazy over Adele’s weight loss; completely ignoring her incredible career of 15 Grammy’s, but focusing on her body instead.)

As women, we have always felt the pressure to have a ‘perfect body’. Even if you say you are confident in the way you look, we all have our down days. Sadly, we have got into our heads that thin is good and we need to have a certain body to be accepted. So, since lockdown, we have all felt that added pressure to use the time on our hands to exercise and work on our post lockdown bods. And being the social media creatures that we are, the endless exposure to exercise videos and dieting techniques does not help calm down this pressure.

Everyone’s exercise needs are completely different, so just because other people are exercising doesn’t mean that you have to.

I’m not saying that exercise is bad, or that we should just become complete couch potatoes during this pandemic. In fact, everyone needs exercise. It’s important. But, at this time, exercise should be used as a way to relieve stress and feel mentally and physically better, rather than used to achieve that ‘lockdown glow up’ or ‘summer bod.’ (Note how I’ve used ‘’ as there is no such thing as a body glow-up or summer bod.)

In particular, those who struggle with an eating disorder or exercise addiction are at a higher risk of being triggered by what they see on social media. Everyone’s exercise needs are completely different, so just because other people are exercising doesn’t mean that you have to. It doesn’t mean that THAT is right for your body. Maybe the right thing for your body right not is to not exercise. The best thing may be to heal your body. To eat good food and relax.

So, I am taking my hat off to the influencers and celebs who are giving us a healthy dose of realism and using their social media accounts to promote the idea that you don’t have to come out of lockdown looking like a Victoria Secret model. So, go on, give these gals a follow and read what they have to say. They know how to rock their bodies and celebrate themselves for whatever shape they are.

Huda Beauty

Malin Andersson

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‘It’s the cracks that let the light shine through.’ – Rebecca Campbell For every crack that has formed within my soul, has allowed a beautiful strobe of light to allow through and shine. These cracks representing every dark part of my life. That one crack within me that starved myself which was one one of many. This one shines extra bright for me today. It shines through all the hell and restriction I put myself through. It shines through the ideal of what we should all look like. It shines through the media, the perfection and the starvation. The pageants, Love Island, the need and want to be thin. Oh let me tell you, it now shines so so bright. I’ve had an up and down week in terms of my eating, some days I’ve eaten more, some less, purely out of boredom. At one point I was worried that I would trigger myself into that wild pattern that was once built into me… but I stopped, thought, felt. I felt for what was really important and I amazed myself. I looked in the mirror and asked myself, Who am I? I am the girl that is worth so so much more then what society says. I am not a label, I am a journey of some beautiful yet sad stories. These stories don’t define who I am yet they have provided me with the growth and mindset needed for this very moment, this very moment of me looking in the mirror questioning whether I needed to lose weight. The answer was no. I do not. For I’m thankful for all those cracks in my life which allowed portions of light to shine through – for they built me up to be one hell of a woman now. Stand up tall, know what you deserve to put yourself through.. for you deserve the most LIGHT. I sit here and bare all for you to realise what is truly important in life. I spread the message of my trauma, my body and old insecurities in hope that it can ‘wake’ at least one of you up. Sending you all so much love if you’re struggling in lockdown right now. ?

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Alex Light

Chessie King

Danae Mercer

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A woman’s WEIGHT made headlines this week. In the midst of a GLOBAL PANDEMIC, the female BODY became a trending topic. There was a time when I would have praised this. When I would have nodded along with the papers and the news and said YES, GREAT, HOORAH, SUCCESS. We are conditioned to believe that WEIGHT LOSS is good and weight gain is bad, that smaller is better, that 0, or 00, is the goal size of jeans, and that any woman who shuns food in favor of water or soft sips of detox tea is somehow superior. So we judge. We PROJECT. Often, without even really realizing it, we assign someone’s WORTH to them based on their SIZE. And we dish insults or affections accordingly. But that thinking is so flawed. As someone who has played that game, who has shrunk herself into smaller sizes and resisted food and received the praise, all while carefully crumbling, my gosh that thinking IS SO FLAWED. Because health is SO MUCH MORE than a size. It is all the many parts of us: our bodies, our minds, our souls. It’s how much we move in a way that feels good and how we nourish ourselves and how we SPEAK to ourselves, in our heads, in our hearts. It’s all this mixed together in a glorious paint pallet that creates not just ONE BODY TYPE, but dozens, hundreds. All of them different, and all of them perfect by design. So today, just a little reminder. Before that judgement happens, before comparison creeps in, remember this: health cannot be determined just by what’s happening on the outside. And while fighting all this weight-related cultural conditioning is HARD, we can start by constantly reminding ourselves that a woman’s BODY is no one’s BUSINESS BUT HER OWN. Because SHE is the one who will know what HEALTH looks like FOR HER. Even if some rubbish newspapers are still trying to persuade us otherwise. Good luck out there girl. x . . . #iweigh #selflove #bodypositivity #mentalhealth #feminist

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Yes ladies! You are such an inspiration to lots of us in this difficult time. Keep doing what you’re doing and we’ll be watching in awe.

Tags: bodypositivity, corona virus, covid-19, exercise, lockdown, pressure, the femme, weight loss, workouts

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  1. Avatar
    • idia fepasozo
    • March 8, 2021

    Couldn’t say it better myself

  2. Avatar


  3. Avatar
    • Tiana
    • March 9, 2021

    Think we all needed to hear this

  4. Avatar
    • Erika Rowles
    • March 11, 2021

    Be kind to yourself

  5. Avatar
    • Izzy
    • March 11, 2021

    Damn right

  6. Avatar
    • Ella Arnold
    • March 11, 2021

    everyone needs to hear this

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