I'm sure by now most of you have seen the Protein World adverts sporting a yellow bikini clad woman and the controversial "are you beach body ready?" slogan. And you've also probably seen London's rather entertaining response to the adverts (see above) which I find hilarious!
I find it encouraging that the people of London have responded to this rather shallow reason to take care of yourself. It makes me think that collectively Londoners are thinking about their bodies and their training in terms of a lifestyle choice rather than as a means to looking good on a beach for 2 weeks a year. And that makes me really happy!
It also made me think about the reasons why we choose to exercise. I was predictably going to write an article on getting your body ready for the summer but when I saw the backlash to the Protein world adverts I remembered that everyone I work with has one of the following if not all of the below motivations and yet still seem to look mighty fine on the beach every year! So in protest of "beach body ready" here are 6 healthier and happier motivations to exercise regularly...
1. Goal-driven training is top priority here at Precision Movement. I absolutely love it when clients tell me they have an event or an adventure they want to take part in. Goal-driven training does two important things, firstly it gives direction and purpose to your training in the gym and secondly it takes the focus away from aesthetics and because of your goal-driven training you tend to achieve them anyway.
2. The feel good factor of exercise is undeniable. There is not one client who leaves the studio who doesn't feel much better after training than when they walked in. I'd love to take credit for this but sadly it's a chemical by-product of exercise and movement. On a daily basis you can chemically make yourself feel better through movement and exercise - why wouldn't you want to feel better? Exercising to feel better just makes sense.
3. I prefer the motivations of a "strong body fit for life" over looking good on the beach. Anyone who is strong and eats well is going to look good on the beach. In addition having a strong and able body works wonders on confidence, how you carry yourself and how others relate to you. In contrast people can also sense when you are obsessive about how you look which promotes insecurity and makes others doubt your abilities and whether you are trustworthy.
4. Another great motivation for exercising regularly is for longevity. We are living longer and we need a body that can support a longer life. Exercise helps maintain good posture, reduce the risk of degenerative changes, decreases the decline of bone density with age, and maintain healthy functioning muscle and connective tissue.
5. Regular exercise and movement also helps your brain work better. You get a release of BDNF which nourishes brain cells and encourages new neural connections effectively making you smarter. Regular exercise This is by far my favourite motivation for exercising regularly.
6. Exercise is a great way to get rid if excess stress that might otherwise create unwanted conflict. We all have stress from work, family, commuting and life in general. Exercise is a safe, healthy and effective way to let to of all the tension that builds up.
So when you see one of the protein world adverts that has not already been vandalised have a think about what motivates you to exercise regularly and if the mood takes you, correct the ad as you see fit - jokes! :p Due to protests the adverts have now been removed. I just love Londoners :)