So I saw this in the U-Bahn today on the way to the gym:
This happens to be a billboard for my gym. I like my gym, but I’m mad at them for that photo of the woman with the 1/2 kg weights. WTF? That model did not get that bicep from “lifting” tiny blue mini-dumbbells. But it’s not the false advertising in that sense that bothers me – although, let’s face it, you’re never going to look like her if all you do is 20 reps with a microscopic weight a few times a week. Also, she is not even remotely in the gym in question, which in no way resembles a white-marble mausoleum with a view of central park. It’s the whole Feminity Package that is so annoying: you should be skinny, blonde, NEVER EVER SWEAT under ANY circumstances because that’s gross, and you should go to the gym in order to stay skinny except you shouldn’t sweat (see above) and you should always look pleasant and happy so that other people will feel good when they look at you, and you shouldn’t overstrain your delicate female system by doing any actual exercise.
I totally get that this is advertising, and nobody ever sold gym memberships with a billboard featuring a cellulite-and-acne-covered pregnant woman with a facial rash doing squats in sausage-encasing leggings. But come on, people. This is not a depiction of real strength or real fitness. It’s just more Delicate Femininity Bullshit. Grrr!
I could also put on my Andrea Dworkin hat and call them out for the clear implication of female servitude in the middle photo, with the massage. What is this, Silvio Berlusconi’s personal gym? “Let our harem pamper you after a long day at the office. You’ve earned it.” If I tried hard enough I could think of something snarky to say about the dude on the bike, but at least he’s doing something approaching a theoretical workout, even if he looks a bit too stoked about it.
******Breaking Workout News******
Today I did an hour of strength training at the aforementioned gym with the bullshit billboard, followed by some core stuff and stretching. It feels so good to work out – I can’t imagine doing this pregnancy thing without it.