It's that time of year again. The days are getting longer, and summer is on the way. Cue the 'Summer Body Ready' ads that try and convince you to panic diet so that you look good in your swimsuit. But whoever said that skinny means you are summer body ready? More importantly, whoever said that crash dieting between now and summer is a good idea?


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Why You Shouldn't Diet Just For Summer

When it comes to dieting and getting fitter, it should be done over time and because you want it, not because you feel you need to look a certain way. When you see adverts promoting 'Summer Body Ready' or 'Fit for Summer', it is purely a marketing ploy to make money. That doesn't mean you should ignore them. If you want fitness equipment or good deals, go ahead and take a look. However, it is important to remember that those ads should not dictate how you think you should look.

Dieting and getting fit needs to be done at your own pace and taking into account everything about yourself. Every person is different, and it is important to remember to take note of your body shape and build because you could spend months reaching for a goal that your body shape just might not allow. That doesn't mean you aren't fit and healthy, but it can be hard to think that when adverts are pushing images of slim women and muscular men.

Importance of Long-Term Goals

Woman celebrating reaching her goals - summer body ready

When it comes to planning your fitness routine or diet plan, it is important to set long-term goals. In this case, there is nothing wrong with summer being when you want to reach your goal, but it shouldn't be the target purely to look good for summer. For example, your goal can be to lose so much weight over the next 3 months or put on a few pounds before July. Make sure those long-term goals are achievable. Don't decide in May that you want to lose 1 stone in a month. This is because crash dieting can have a really bad effect on your body. Make sure you give yourself enough time to reach that goal steadily and safely.

Reaching that goal also doesn't mean that you stop all the hard work you've done once you get there either. Alter your plans to keep yourself as you are, whether to maintain that comfortable weight or a new level of fitness. Deciding you've reached your goal and then going back to how you were before will just send you back to the beginning. It also means that you might end up doing it again when next summer comes around, and constantly yoyoing with weight is very unhealthy. What we're trying to say is, don't get fit just for summer. Do it for you!

Why Body Shape Can Play A Major Role

Four women showing different body types

One major thing to consider when it comes to dieting and getting fitter is your body shape. Every person has a different body type, and these change differently when you diet or exercise. A downside to companies pushing 'Summer Body Ready' is that they generally use very slim women and muscular men. Generalising that people should look like this when going on holiday or to the beach for summer is very damaging. It can cause people to get an image in their heads that you have to look a certain way.

If you have a body type that simply will never look like what ads push us to think is 'perfect', then you can cause more damage than good. Most ads represent two body types, not the hundreds of body types there actually are. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be fitter and healthier, but remember, you might never look like those ads want you to, and that's okay. That doesn't make you any less 'Summer Body Ready' than the next person.

Those adverts might push that being slim is how you should look. What they should be pushing is that you need to be healthy, no matter what body type you have. This applies to people wanting to lose weight, gain weight or stay the same. As long as you are healthy, you are 'Summer Body Ready'.


general

Before beginning any exercise or nutrition program, consult your physician, doctor or other professional. This is especially important for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. Exercise.co.uk assumes no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.

If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.