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Training

STOP With The Unrealistic “Fitspo” | Why We Don’t Care About Thigh Gaps

It’s all too easy to wake up, check your phone and feel like only beautiful people exist. Instagram fills the empty spaces in our days with perfect bodies that are by no means attainable, even by their supposed owners.

While there are many advocates out there for body positivity, this doesn’t seem to stop the ridiculous body-dysmorphic trends clogging up our feeds every few months. From thigh gaps, to bikini bridges, these unrealistic — and often unhealthy — trends don’t seem to be based on how fit and healthy you are. Because we all should know by now that no two of even the fittest and healthiest bodies look the same.

Eating and exercising a certain way for specific physical results, such as getting rid of your hip dips, or finding that elusive thigh gap (both of which depend more on your bone structure than body fat, by the way) is rarely a healthy attitude to have.

Instead, how about exercising because it makes you happy, because it’s a good way to meet new people, or allows you to switch off after a busy day? What about eating to fuel your hard work, ambitions, and just because you love a good pizza?

 

All of a sudden, you stop seeing food and exercise as a way to deprive and punish yourself and more as a way to lift you up and celebrate everything that your body is capable of. It’s time to think about everything that it does for you every single day.

Forget about making visible “improvements”, if you can even call them that, and focus on building yourself up from the inside, as well as your strength, resilience, and stamina, so that you can leave the gym feeling like you’ve achieved something.

Feeling powerful, as well as comfortable in your own skin is far more “attractive” and will make you far happier than any physical measurement of what society claims to be beautiful.

So, how can you ditch the daydreams of no thigh dips in favour of something far healthier? It’s time to surround yourself with people — and Instagram accounts — that build you up. Get rid of that nasty knot in your stomach every time you see that ridiculous expectation of perfection appear on your screen.

Here’s some of our favourite Myprotein ambassadors who pride themselves on strength, balance, and self-confidence. They’ll help you realise that nobody’s “perfect”, everyone has body hang-ups, and it’s more than okay to indulge.

Siobhan O’Hagan

Unfollow those “fitspo” accounts that make you feel bad for even looking at that chocolate biscuit and fill your feed with some strong Irish sassiness. Siobhan’s real attitude towards what it takes to look and feel your best will inspire you to work out for you, not the dream of a different body.

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Self-love or even self-acceptance is not always easy. I want to help everyone be content with their body – but I still have wobbles. I almost didn’t go to Finns this evening because I didn’t want to get into a bikini 🙄 I was feeling crap after all the travel and eating and drinking 😬 But I’ve had enough practice on this journey to realise that that feeling is completely subjective and to tell myself to cop on, find something flattering to wear, and go have fun 💃🏻 Sure who actually cares what I look like?! 🤷🏻‍♀️ Anyway, I’m delighted I went and got to meet so many fun Irish girls on their holidays! It’s mad meeting followers on the other side of the world! I really can’t wait for my retreat next week now 🤗💕 #canggu #bali #selflove

A post shared by Siobhan O'Hagan – OHFitness.ie (@siobh.ohagan) on

 

Corinne Evans Jones

Hip dips? Toblerone tunnels? What do they even mean? Ditch these frankly bizarre ideas of beauty in favour of beaches, a gorgeous baby, and a woman whose main goal is balance. Corinne will teach you to love your body for what it is, as well as celebrate everything it can do.

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Anyone else struggling the find the balance? 🤷🏽‍♀️ _ The balance between being healthy, happy, maintaining a great career, seeing your friends, finding time to yourself, exercising, maintaining a good skincare routine, reading books, going surfing…. I could go on 🤣 _ I have said this before and I will say this again, but I am frequently dropping balls. I am by no means a professional life juggler. I am 100% living day to day, trying to fit everything in and keep everyone happy (including myself) 😬 Recently its been my exercise regime and surfing that has suffered, which has got me feeling sluggish and weak. SO I have written a mini at home program I can do morning or night to up my strength training, and FYI I think there are fun waves on the way 🙌🏾 _ I am sure we are all in this boat from time to time, but that’s ok! There is no need to stress, just go with it, do what you can and remember it’s ok not to be able to do it ALL! 🤙🏽 _ wearing @myproteinuk // by @lizzie_churchill _ #fuelyourambition #mumlife #honestmotherhood #wellnesswednesday #itsokaynottobeokay #positivevibes #mummybloggeruk

A post shared by Corinne Evans Jones (@corinneevans) on

 

Reev

It’s not all about the girls either. Plenty of guys are surrounded by incredibly unrealistic expectations. How many guys do you really know with a six pack? Okay, this guy does, but he also shows you the funny side to fitness as well as reminding you that your own personal progress is all that matters.

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6 week transformation. ✅ Tried to take as accurate a before and after photo as was possible. Lost around 7-8% body fat. Nothing special, just eating well (calorie deficit) and making sure I put 100% into my sessions (gallons of sweat 💦) … Fitness should be whatever YOU want it to be, not everyone’s a professional athlete or competing on stage, life gets in the way… hell I don’t even look as good as I did this time last year, and this lighting does ZERO favours. I haven’t done a ‘bodybuilding split’ in god knows how long, but I’d absolutely run RINGS around 2018 me. So long as you’re healthy physically AND mentally, and you keep yourself honest about working hard, that’s all that matters. It’s a brilliant hobby because whatever you decide to do with it, is your own personal progress! #GetItDone @myproteinuk

A post shared by Reev (@reevhd) on

 

So, delete that stupid hip dips workout you saved down and stop comparing yourself to airbrushed models who probably also wish they looked that good in real life. Be happy with the gift of a healthy body that gets stronger every day and join the community of women and men celebrating our infinitely unique bodies — that’s where you’ll find true beauty.

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Evangeline Howarth

Evangeline Howarth

Writer and expert

Evangeline has taken part in competitive sports since a young age. As a qualified RYA Dinghy Instructor, she understands the importance of proper nutrition for fuelling extreme and endurance sports, especially due to her experience in Team GBR Squads and captaining and coaching her University first team.

In her spare time, Evangeline loves running – especially marathons. On the weekends, you’ll find her taking on water sports or hiking up a hill. Her favourite evenings are spent taking on a HIIT session or squats in the gym before digging into some spicy food and a ton of vegetables – yum!

Find out more about Evie's experience here.