One of the advertisements that bombarded me in Youtube was this Nike Commercial called ‘Better for It‘. I usually skip commercials when I can, but for the first time in months, I didn’t skip this one. It was that good.
No shame in running half a half marathon.
The commercial shows the thoughts of women when they exercise, and I must say that these thoughts are not far off. Coming from a woman that is not… athletic (at all, mind you), I have said these words before. Halfway through the ad I was smiling already because I know that the statements were true. While I watched this, I thought about how the fitness landscape has changed to what it is today.
People today are very focused on healthier living and going green. While it is good to still seek professional help to avoid hurting yourself, I think most of us are looking into doing things our own way. That is, following a personal routine like a short morning jog, or a smaller dinner portion. It’s not always easier, but we all know the motivating things we say to ourselves when we think about our health.
But some still opt for traditional methods, like going to the gym. Never having the experience of being surrounded by people in a gym, I don’t have a frame of reference, but something that I can relate to is being looked from head to toe assessing your body structure. This being done while you are exercising is a intimidating, especially for someone just starting out. This is one of the things I liked about the ad, since it shows the insecurity factor of exercising in public, even just a little bit.
They look so non-judgmental. I don’t trust that.
Why is this such a big deal? Well, even though we are presently having campaigns such as “Real Women have curves” and the music industry’s fascination with women’s behinds, we really should be okay with a little additional body mass. Unfortunately not all people think so. Fatshaming is still a thing nowadays, and thigh gaps are still a factor. Even skinny body shapes have been under fire, so there is no excusing anyone. So, women look into exercise and diet to better their self-esteems, or else, just pull out a new pint of ice cream from the fridge.
Because of the internet we have available access to dieting and exercise tips while we, you know, sit and slouch in front of the computer desk promising to do it tomorrow. I guess it is a blessing to have that kind of accessibility, but some sources are not as reliable as going to an expert yourself, or taking physical classes for different forms of exercise. This is a bit dangerous. Considering that women want to better themselves through exercise, it’s kind of ironic that they put their body and lives in more danger by exercising.
We are also under the impression that we are doing exercise for our sake and not for others, which should be the actual purpose of staying fit. But sometimes, insecurities and body image does propel us to that last lap, or energize us enough to do that last push-up. Whether that’s good or bad is up to you.
What am I even doing?
The end take for the Nike ad was that even though we do think we can’t make it, eventually we do, and we can. So long as it makes you breathe, live and feel better everyday, then there is no need to worry about other people’s eyes. That’s fine by me.