For the longest time, I wanted to know what so many of my #FitBlog friends were talking about. Eventually, I decided to tune in and catch it. You see, normally, I’m up and about by 6:45 a.m., so by 7:15 a.m., I’m usually on Twitter seeing what everyone is doing for the morning. Many of my buds have tweets which give clear indication. They’ll be spending the next 12 or so minutes sweating it out to BodyRock! Imagine a truly intense, at home workout that gets you going and gets those veins popping with minimal cost. So instead of the $140 you might spend for something like P90X, you pay almost nothing and get ripped out of your mind.
Body Rock has been sweeping the nation and the movement is something like a hurricane. These folks have a dedication to fitness and want to see everyone look better naked. And they are out to prove it. Almost quite literally.
While it’s no secret that there is a thin line in the fitness world between fitness modeling and overt sexuality, those lines are blurred quite regularly, not just on BodyRock but also in many fitness magazines, videos and especially all over youtube. Let’s be honest, here: Sex sells. Sex sells a lot. So of course a sexy woman working out and motivating you but making you think you will have even more sex with women just as sexy as her once you yourself get sexier… well…. that has some appeal.
The point is that the fitness industry is male dominated and often times, women are left in the place of not only having to have fit bodies but also having to present those bodies in sensual, erotic or sometimes outright sexual ways in order to attract the same notoriety and opportunities as a Phil Heath or a Jay Cutler. We want to see our men strong, with big round muscles. But we want the women to have strong muscle too, yet the same women then have to show they have maintained their femininity by posing and placing emphasis on their sexual prowess.
The case of Lisa Marie
Lisa Marie has been a Body Rocker for sometime. With her encouraging spirit, bright personality and never say die attitude, not to mention outrageously cute accent, she will push you to do your best, and then… do better. As far as trainers go, you couldn’t get anyone better, more attractive, fun or encouraging.
BodyRock wants you to know, you won’t find any better eye candy anywhere, either. When accessing the Bodyrock Facebook Page (the source for all the following images), this is what you get when it comes to images of Lisa Marie:
In some of those pics, she’s reduced to a headless / faceless body that only shows her breasts, abs and lower body in underwear.
Do these pictures push the boundaries of selling sex in a fitness industry designed to make one feel good about their own self?
I placed that last picture of her bent over the couch up there on purpose, because I think it really captures the slow change we are seeing from Body Rock. The message seems slowly to be going from “Get in shape so you are healthy” to “Get in shape so you are healthy, and outrageously sexy!” The problem though, is that this can also be interpreted as “Get in shape and be sexy, because if you’re a woman, all that really matters is your ability to sell sex!” Now, women ought to be sexy if that’s what makes them feel beautiful and special. But BodyRock seems to be stating that that should be their only motivation for any workout. Because of course, you want to attract the attention of a man… sexually… don’t you?
Here’s another example (you don’t need to watch the whole thing, maybe a few seconds to get the idea):
We have Lisa working out in what just a little less than shorts. Was this truly done for the females in the audience who wish to copy the moves to look like Lisa? Was it done to inspire the women to shoot for something more with their own bodies? Or was it done for males in the audience who will watch this vid, and whose clicks will increase this video’s ratings making it easier to find and promote on Youtube? Maybe both? Maybe reducing Lisa Marie to a sexpot works for marketing, since at the end of the day this is a business. BodyRock needs the views and they want you to buy the products sold on the site. Lisa Marie in a thong, jumping up and down and bending over multiple times will most certainly accomplish that.
Bigger than her Body Rock gives her credit for
It’s easy to discount all of this and just say, “Well, it doesn’t matter, she loves what she’s doing”, “I have no problem with it!”, “She’s happy and she’s just trying to help us look our best!”, and “You’re grasping at straws! She can control her sexuality anyway she wants to. Shut up, you’re just a man!!!” To an extent, I concede that all of those statements are correct.
But let’s look deeper.
Lisa-Marie, is more than just the girl with the washboard stomach who can put your wife to shame in the looks department. It can get easy to get caught up with how her body oozes sex.
But she’s a human being. And she, like the rest of us has a story that goes beyond how long she can jump rope.
You only need to watch the 1st full minute of this vid.
Did you catch any of that? She’s crying. She’s lonely. She’s completely disconnected from her family. And despite how many of us are watching those vids, she finds it incredibly hard to make friends (i.e. people who see her as more than a possible sexual conquest and as a sexual object). You’ll also note that she is almost fully dressed in this vid. The problem with a fitness industry that constantly packages women as sex kittens is that we forget Lisa-Marie is a unique human being, as beautiful on the inside as she is fit on the outside (It’s Laura Michelle Prestin all over again). We forget that she goes through many of the same challenges that we do, just that she doesn’t get to talk about them that much to someone who will look her in the eye and listen… not stare at her chest and imagine. I think it can be tiring to only be seen as a sexual object day in and day out. To me this video proves that.
What we see in the fitness industry is merely a reflection of our society. In this video, she’s sad, yet in the comments section, the statements from viewers range from flirtatious to down right vulgar in reference to imaginary romantic romps with her.
It’s a mighty fine line between fitness and sex, since of course being fit IS sexy. But let’s not forget that our fitness and bikini models in the Bodybuilding and fitness industry are more than objects to satisfy our lusts. They are valuable women, many of them wives and mothers. BodyRockTV should remember that it’s okay for Lisa-Marie to workout in clothes that the average woman at Planet Fitness would wear. We will still love her just the same, and I guarantee still try our own best to get and stay fit.