(This post contains some minor NSFW language. NSFW? Go Google it.)
Summer is coming and it’s about now that people start thinking about those tiny little bikinis, or more accurately, how you want other people to see you in that otherwise useless two-piece immodesty rag. Perhaps that’s taking things too far? It doesn’t need to be a bikini. It might be a one-piece. It might be some budgie-smugglers for the men out there. Though, for me, it’d be knee-length shorts. I’ve never found a comfortable place with wearing (under)pants in public. Not since I had to skinny dip in Loch Lomond wearing my Spiderman pants when I was single-digit years old. True story. But let’s get back on track—you want that beach body, don’t you? Well, read on.
Beach Body Fit. What the flippity flip-flops does that even mean? I’ll have a sunshine stab at figuring that out. Beaches bring to my mind images of golden sand and crashing waves. Maybe a blue sky with a powder-puff cloudscape. But there’s more. There are gulls and maybe a stray dog. Probably a stranded jellyfish taking on the arduous task of resembling an oversized and circular gummy bear. Is any of this Beach Body Fit? If the sand is hot your feet burn on the super-heated silica of crushed shells and ancient marine life. And if the wind blows, the sand goes everywhere. It makes mud in your eyes and finds its way into and onto every exposed surface and crevice; it’s so much worse if you’ve got sun-cream lathered over your photon-phobic skin. How do I survive this? How do I become Beach Body Fit? Become a freaking camel. Or a crab. Or be that dive-bombing gull coming for your ice-cream. One thing I know for sure—there is no human beach body.
Beach Body Fit isn’t what you think it is. Beach Body Fit is another of those pesky marketing tags made to penetrate your self-esteem and scuttle thoughts that you were doing okay in the ‘bod’ department. You need to understand that you can never be ‘Beach Body Fit’ enough. There’s always one more product or activity that you can do to stroll closer to the pinnacle of poser perfection. Whether you drink an ocean of that (absolutely redundant) diet shake, or you lash out another 80-million treadmill miles, you can never be good enough. Not when the industry wants your cash, or in these days, your digital transaction. Do not be fooled. There is no Beach Body Fit.
Understand context is everything. You are constantly barraged by ‘You’re not good enough’ marketing bullshit and it’s force-fed to you with all the focussed precision of a cluster-bomb in a tea-shop. The question should be asked: For what is it that I am deemed to be unfit? Is it going to the beach? And what is it you intend to do at the beach? Perhaps lie down in an almost comatose condition on an ‘authentic’ Versace towel you bought at the market in Marmaris? I think for 90% of beach destinations that is the plan for most adults; to be a human meat stick, occasionally rotating on sandy elbows to even up that blotchy mosaic of skin damage the cosmetic industry prefers to call a tan. How fit does one even need to be to be a flesh rotisserie? I’d argue a more circular shape would make that activity more efficient than being a two-dimensional wall of meat-muscle constructed of triangles and sharp indents. Have you tried rolling a triangle? In terms of achieving an overall
burn tan, it seems the perfect Beach Body Mass Index (BMI) would be classified as ‘spherical’.
More context. Unless I’m a complete weirdo with the observational skills of a plastic bag, I’m quite sure we go on holiday to enjoy ourselves. For me, that means going to British Columbia on a photo-shooting self-drive safari. Beach Body doesn’t apply to me when I’m hunting brown bears with a Canon lens. Beach Body to me means bear spray and a fresh pair of underpants for when things go wrong. I digress. You go to a beach resort to do one of three things (or all of them). For some, it might simply be to read a book on a lounger and enjoy romantic meals at sunset. That really doesn’t require a six pack, does it? I mean, why endure months of sacrifice to get cubes on your skin-cloth when you’re only going to smother it in pleasure-fed tubbiness?
Other people might do some exploring, go on a guided tour, maybe sample the local culture. Do you need to be able to do six-thousand sit-ups to do that? Do you need the strength to bench-press Pluto to visit the museum of antiquity in some far-flung shore? If you answer yes, you’re a contrary asshole.
Some folks, the younger ones (or enthusiastic oldies), might go on holiday for that fling with a romantic stranger. And by romantic stranger, I mean predatory local sex-pest. Perhaps they are looking for someone with great abs but I doubt it. They want novel encounters and I’m pretty sure body-shape isn’t on their checklist. Cheap kicks aren’t measured in gym hours.
Point is: none of these reasons require a honed body built by months of food-guilt, excessive exercise and anxious weekly measurements of your love-handles or happy-hips.
Understand there is no such thing as having a Beach Body. Little baby turtles who hatch under the glorious moonlight aren’t concerned about their beach bodies. They’re supremely pre-occupied with surviving the perilous journey to the lapping caress of the ocean than they are with their under-developed soft (tasty) bellies. And if turtles aren’t thinking of being beach body ready, neither should you. You’re a human thinking thing. We’re supposed to be better than the animals. Though really, we’re not; we’re all part of this cosmic wonder we call life. And I assure you, life never ever thought we’d be subjected to the whims of profiteering marketing companies who force-feed us neurosis inducing mantra about things that matter not.
Now, don’t come away from this post thinking I’m advocating a life of sloth and lethargy—I’m not. But it’s vitally important to keep your brain buds alert and know when you’re being stimulated (or subjugated) by a marketing cattle-prod to coerce you into specific, self-defeating behaviours. Beach Body Fit is not reality. It is the anathema to what a holiday should be about.
Go forth and conquer: eat well, dance in the moonlight, date an exotic stranger, and rub Calamine lotion on your cherished, well-rounded tan.
Beach body ready? Go tan yourself.