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The Discourse

3 Easy Steps to Shed That ‘COVID 15’ Flab

People are dying but how cute is that name!

So what if gyms aren’t essential these days — keeping your body in shape for swimsuit season sure is! Perhaps you’ve noticed a bit more chub around your midsection, or a second chin emerging when you peer at your reflection in light disgust. How dreadful! But there’s still time to time to shed that cursed “COVID 15.” (People are dying but how cute is that name!) Follow these three simple steps to a slimmed waistline and tight tush ready for beach days, weekend barbecues, and hot summer nights!

  1. Find your inspiration. Social media is the best place to find your spark. Thankfully, you won’t have to scroll far — Twitter and Instagram are your friends during this quarantine, especially for gathering diet and exercise tips. Save meals and workouts you find across the internet to try out. Take a page from people doing virtual 5Ks to raise money for mutual aids and taking their exercise routines to Instagram Live. Notice how “firm” they look and wonder how long they worked out before quarantine to get their stomachs to look this way. Save a viral TikTok video from a 16 year old about the juice cleanse that helped them lose 30 pounds. Aimlessly like the photos people post from when they were 20 and thin. Look at your own stomach in the mirror and examine your various moles and stretch marks. Recall that one article from 2014, about mothers who called them “tiger stripes.” Google “cocoa butter stretch marks” and put a bottle of lotion in your Amazon cart before discarding it for an overpriced yoga mat and blocks set instead. Tell yourself it’s an investment in your wellbeing, and that you will thank yourself later. Pay extra for expedited shipping. Tell no one what you’ve done.

  2. Eat for the body you want. You are what you eat, so your diet should reflect who you want to be. Go back to those saved recipes and make a shopping list with all the foods you saw Gwyneth Paltrow buy with food stamps once. Remind yourself why you want to lose the weight by using this handy dandy, surely scientific and doctor-certified snacks-to-pounds calculator created by a friendly, good-faith job hunting website. Remind yourself that gaining weight is bad and losing weight is good and that fat’s only purpose is to burn in hell, via pain, which is just weakness leaving the body, according to many people who are surely much smarter than you. Cross off all carbs from your shopping list. Remember that one summer years ago when you stopped eating carbs because you joined Weight Watchers and your acid reflux went away, but then you got the runs at an outdoor concert after your first alcoholic beverage in weeks. Get excited at the prospect of losing your acid reflux again. Find the vegetables in your refrigerator wilting and mushed while trying to make a Buddha bowl. Make a mental note to turn your expiring avocado into a face mask but forget. Throw it out a month later, only after you notice it’s excreting juices.

  3. Commit, don’t quit! Think of this quarantine as a new New Year, and your fitness goals as your new New Year’s resolutions. Why don’t most New Year’s resolutions work? Because they’re not sustainable! So make a workout regiment that works for your envisioned body, and stick to it. Try out one of the various online video exercise services, like the Daily Flex, or Fat Melters. Commit to a three month subscription before realizing that the online yoga instructor is trying to murder you from the comfort of your home. Look up a popular yoga YouTuber and start a 30 day series of hour-long videos. Skip the second day, then try to do two the day after, settling for one and a half videos once your child-like abdomen starts to cramp. Skip the next three days to let your sore, stretch-striped stomach rest. On the seventh day, look back at how far you’ve come and celebrate with a “cheat” meal from Chick-fil-A. Touch the drive-thru attendant’s gloves with your bare hands as they pass you your food, on accident at first but then on purpose because it felt nice to feel something, anything, again. Tell no one what you’ve done. Repeat this process for the next three weeks, or until your summer is canceled.

Screenshot via Cinco Días/YouTube