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.
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.