Some days when you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror, the first thing you notice is the latest grey hair, a blemish on the skin, or a few hard-earned wrinkles. Other days, you’ll see only your smile and the twinkle in your eyes.
Often, how we feel on the inside reflects what we see on the outside, and I know myself if I’m in a happy mood, I’ll feel better about the way I look – and vice versa. So, in the anxious, fraught and worrying times we’re all living through now, it’s only natural many of us have started to feel our confidence ebb away.
According to a new survey, carried out by MPs on Westminster’s women and equalities committee, lockdown has made people feel “much worse” about the way they look, with more than half of respondents admitting the past six months have damaged how they view their appearance.
A range of issues, from reading articles on “lockdown weight gain” to gyms being shut, were cited as reasons for feeling low, with 58% of under-18s and 53% of adults saying their self-esteem has hit rock bottom. The statistics are shocking but unsurprising.
For many of us, the mental strain of lockdown has been one of the hardest things to combat, as spending more time indoors has understandably left us feeling unmotivated to exercise or even dress in something that’s not pyjamas or trackies – which is a recipe for the blues if I’ve ever I saw one. Who could blame us for reaching for another glass of wine or another slice of cake?
It would be an understatement to say it has been a difficult year, and any progress we’ve made towards getting back to “normal” now feels stalled or even cancelled after the recently reintroduced restrictions. And, although I’m sure none of us wants to revisit virtual quizzes and cocktail hour on Zoom, I do think there’s one aspect of lockdown that would boost our morale in the current quarantine 2.0 – jumping, dancing and sweating together with an online workout.
Everyone’s favourite YouTube PE teacher, Joe Wicks, may have hung up his shorts for the winter, but I have a better (slightly more glamorous) idea for how we can all feel the burn to benefit both our body and mind. Strictly season is almost upon us, so wouldn’t it be fantastic if we all put on our dancing shoes for a lively and entertaining workout?
Since my stint on the show, I’ve become a huge fan of exercising to music because, let’s face it, not everyone wants to feel like they’ve gone 10 rounds with Mike Tyson after a workout. Sometimes we just want to get our body moving and have fun. Shifting a few extra pounds from the tummy, arms or legs is just an added bonus.
The glitz and glitter of Strictly brings so much joy to people, I’m certain a 15-minute daily online workout with one of the professional dancers would work wonders to get us moving in our kitchens, bedrooms and living rooms.
Hopefully, there’s a BBC producer reading this column, and I’ve helped to spark a new workout sensation. Or maybe I’ll give the king of ballroom Anton du Beke a quick call…
Did actress slip up as Denise skates in?
It may not hit our screens for another three or four months, but Dancing On Ice is already making headlines – thanks, in part, to a slip-up that had nothing to do with dodgy skating.
Last week, Denise van Outen was revealed as the third celebrity contestant for the show’s 2021 series, after Linda Robson accidently announced the news on Loose Women. Well, “accidentally” – you know how sceptical I am when it comes to publicity stunts!
I know from my own appearance on reality shows just how strict PR bosses and producers can be, so I find it hard to believe the surprise reveal wasn’t planned. Although, apparently, Denise hadn’t even told her daughter.
Mum’s the word, after all.
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