Now, I have no issue with the people on the covers of these magazines, they are in great shape (in most cases) and its their job to look like that. What I do have issue with is the projected image of what is beautiful and in shape. It is unrealistic for the average person that picks up one of these magazines and expecst to look like these people. Most of these individuals have been athletes all their life, have put in the hard work to look the way they do and have a great genetic profile. Should that stop them from trying? No! But should it convince them that because they saw this on a magazine cover that they are inadequate if they don’t look this way? Our society’s opinion on what is acceptable, beautiful and realistic is warped.
I am by no means a small man; I am 5’11 and 200 lbs with relatively low body fat. By most standards, I am a bodybuilder (I do not compete). I was blessed with somewhat decent genetics but how can I expect to look like these individuals in these magazines? I cannot. This public opinion has caused people to go on a quest of something unrealistic and causing people to forget about what’s important; overall physical and mental health. Our self-image has become distorted because of what we see and what has been projected as acceptable. This happens to both women and men. Referring to women, it is unhealthy to look like a stick and have no muscle tone. Quite frankly it is more attractive to have muscles and maybe just maybe a little body fat.
The reality of it is its ok to have a little body fat and have a little extra weight to lose. I cannot tell you how many times a client has brought in a picture of a Victoria’s Secret model and said, “I want to look like this.” My reply is, “No you don’t.”
My conclusion is this; I am not attacking exercise related magazines or the individuals in them. They work hard for their bodies but to expect to look like them for most people is unrealistic, de-motivating and in some cases doesn’t look good anyway. So from me to you, love who you are, continue to workout hard and use good nutritional tactics. Keep working towards your goals but don’t be discouraged by these “perfect” cover models. As a person who is near and dear to my heart says; Lover Your Body!
Yours in Fitness,
About Josh Bowen: "I started my fitness journey as a puny, 145 lbs 18 year old. Like most guys, I wanted muscles to get noticed, but what started as a way to get a date with a girl became a lifestyle and a career. After tirelessly trying to break into the fitness industry, I got my first training job in 2004. I was certified and ready to start whipping people into shape. What started as something I was doing on the side became a love and an obsession. Personal training was what I wanted to do!