One night, I was scrolling through Instagram, passing post after post from gym and fitness influencers — some, I knew and respected — advertising their boot camps or six-week detox programs (often called "resets" for the ones savvy enough to disguise their participation in diet culture), promising to show people the fastest way to get their bodies "summer ready." Along with the right exercise program, these folks also promised to provide the tools to eat "healthy," avoid "junk" food, and ultimately help others lose weight so they can feel confident donning a swimsuit or shorts this summer.
These types of ubiquitous posts are often perpetuated by a thin, able-bodied, privileged, and, more often than not, white individuals — though everyone is part of the fitness game. When these self-described pros really want to drive home the point that they can help people slim down, they add an enticing before and after picture, showing you that this coveted body could be yours if you just buy their program.
In the face of the pervasive amount of messaging that your body needs fixing in order to enjoy the warm weather, I want you to know that it’s all a big, fat lie created by the fitness and wellness industry to keep you feeling like you’re not good enough — and keep their pockets lined with your cash.