For research, I just googled Summer body and I wish I hadn’t. Every single link on the first result page are diet plans promising quick results because haven’t you heard? Summer is coming and therefore we should all be feeling a sense of impending doom because you absolutely cannot show an inch of flesh unless you are ripped, tanned and pretty.
I call bullshit.
There are online professionals(?) who claim they can help you achieve an approved Summer body in limited time. Some even claim they can do so in a week and people are buying into it. I have bought into it in the past. I remember one Summer I spent the entire lead up trying to cut carbs and count calories to try and make myself feel great before a holiday. I felt the opposite of great. Not only did I feel like an insane monster by the time the holiday came round, I’d actually spent every night of said “super easy diet plan” binging like no tomorrow. This resulted in me spending the whole time away stressing out and feeling guilty about the way I’d eaten plus feeling ridiculously uncomfortable in my body. I blamed myself. I blamed my lack of self-control. I vowed that when I got back from the trip, things would be different.. I’d try a different diet which would definitely work and I would finally be happy. This never happened. If I could go back in time and do one thing, it would be to shout in my face “YOU ARE NOT TO BLAME. FUCK THE DIET CULTURE”. I think 16 year old me would be pretty baffled by this but it’d probably do the trick.. presuming I don’t have a heart attack from seeing my future self in the process.
The diet industry is a business which sells on the premise that we need to change our bodies. If everyone decided this wasn’t true, the corporation would crumble overnight. Summer is the perfect time for these companies to thrive because hot weather = showing skin = only acceptable if your thin = diet prime time. I can absolutely 100% promise you that going on a diet to lose weight in time for Summer (or any time of the year in fact) will result in one of the following:
1) You lose weight – Your relationship with food will become disordered. You still won’t feel satisfied by the way your body looks because perfect isn’t achievable. You won’t enjoy the Summer because you will will spend the whole time feeling like your body isn’t good enough. You will continue on a cycle of diets which will become more and more detrimental to your mental and physical health.
2) You don’t lose weight – Your relationship with food will become disordered. You will blame yourself for not losing the weight. You won’t enjoy the Summer because you will will spend the whole time feeling like your body isn’t good enough. You will continue on a cycle of diets which will become more and more detrimental to your mental and physical health.
Neither of these options will make you happy long term and neither of these options will mean you will enjoy your Summer more. So what can you do instead?
1) Accept your body as it is now – Easier said than done right? But, your body is the vehicle in which your soul lives (wow deep) and is not reflective on your worth. Your body is an incredibly hardworking and beautiful work of art that longs for you accept it and respect it!
2) Stop using negative self-talk – Remember that you can become a victim of your own internal comments. Do not refer to yourself in any way that you wouldn’t a loved one. This can really help to promote a healthy mindset and relationship with your body.
3) Wear what you damn want to! – You do not need to wait until you look a certain way to wear a bikini/crop top/t-shirt. You deserve to wear whatever you want to and everyone thinks that everyone else is thinking about them and therefore we’re all too busy thinking about ourselves to worry about what others are doing.
You deserve for your body to feel comfortable when it’s hot, you deserve to wear the clothes that you want to, you deserve to go to the beach and don that hot bikini, you deserve to enjoy the Summer. And guess what? You don’t need to change yourself in any way to do that. This year I can’t wait to wear shorts without tights and tops without jackets. I’ve spent so many years resenting the hot weather and layering up so hard that I become a sweaty anxious mess. When you look back on Summer days gone by do you want to remember the awesome time you had or the amount of calories you ate at the BBQ? I know what I’m choosing. This year is going to be different and I cannot wait. Who’s with me?