It’s that time of the year again, the Leaving Cert is nearly over and holidays are booked to an island resort or further afield. Maybe the thoughts of a bikini or lounging shirtless on the beach all day has you feeling anxious and under a bit of pressure.
We’ve all been there but this summer can be different. I’m here to bust the myths on celebrity body trends and give you some advice to help you feel your best on holidays. The lifestyle, training and diet needed to get results you see on Instagram takes months of dedication and consistency, not to mention great genetics.
For example, the thigh gap, many people don't realise that the shape and anatomy of the thigh bones affect a person's ability to even have a thigh gap. The low body fat percentages needed to have the bikini bridge or the ab crack can be unhealthy and in most cases unsustainable. The average healthy body fat percentage for women is 25-31%. For a chiselled six pack, women need percentages of 16 or less - that’s a big reduction.
For guys, beach bodies tend to be all about the chest, shoulders and biceps, the so-called mirror muscles. Like the ladies, these “gains” take months of training and optimum nutrition to achieve. A few reps of the bench press is not going to build a defined chest. The main message here is that drastic actions are not going to help you achieve the look you want. So with a few weeks to your holidays how do you look your best? A little mindfulness when it comes to your diet and a few more active days will benefit your waistline and mentality.
Try to choose your meals wisely both at home and away by picking lean protein and leafy greens. Making a chicken or tuna salad and bringing it to work will not only save you calories but the extra money can be used on your holiday. Similarly, when you are on holidays try to be as active as possible - ever tried surfing? What about stand up paddle boarding? These activities will help you to burn excess calories from alcohol and food and look pretty cool in photos!
Lastly, with the tide turning towards positive body image and ending body shaming embrace your holidays. Take the time to relax and de-stress, practice gratitude every day and leave the negative body images on social media.
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