Summer has arrived with a bang here in Sydney. It was 30 degrees yesterday, and boy was I unprepared for the heat!
After spending the winter bundled up in jumpers, tights, boots and coats meant it feels really odd to be rocking the demin shorts-and-singlet combo once again. I’d forgotten all the prep that goes into summer dressing - the shaving of legs, the exfoliating and moisturising, the suncream application, the hair-de-frizz precautions, the sudden concern that one’s bikini line needs some attention….but aside from that, there is something so wonderfully freeing about summer dressing. It’s minimum fuss and Australians do it so well. I’m constantly trying to emulate the Bondi surfer chick style (golden skin, bare feet, hair artfully tangled post-swim), but as a pasty northerner who’s terrified of surfing it’s probably best left as a fantasy.
I switched around my wardrobe yesterday. I packed away all of my jumpers and warm clothes and got my summer clothes out of storage. Had a bit of a try-on session and that’s when I realised that 6 months of sitting on my arse means my body is not prepared for summer dressing either. All of my clothes are tight and uncomfortable. My body feels lumpen and sluggish. Which isn’t a surprise, as I’ve been neglecting it for months on end. In fact I’ve been treating it like a piece of shit. Filling it with junk, poisoning it with too much alcohol and not moving it nearly often enough. I feel like I’ve been living in my head all winter, and it’s only now, with the heat of summer here, I’m aware of my body.
Don’t worry, this isn’t going to turn into a post where I winge about how much weight I’ve put on. I’ve hated my body for so many years, it’s almost getting to the point where I’m over it. I’m frankly bored of the same internal monologue about how I’m a worthless piece of shit because I don’t have a flat stomach, bored of trying to cover myself up in case I offend someone with my wobbly arms, bored of always trying to look as small as possible. Maybe it’s because I’m getting older, maybe it’s because I’m finally learning how to be good to myself, but I’m slowly moving away from that bullying voice and instead viewing health, food and exercise as just another form of self-care. So in the spirit of positivity, I want to use this as a call to action.
I want to take full advantage of the summer in Sydney. I want to feel like I didn’t waste a second of it. Which, for me, means long exploratory walks. It means swimming in the ocean at every opportunity. It means getting up early to take in a beautiful sunrise down at the rocks. It means walking home from work, taking the long route through the park, and savouring my surroundings. It means being active in a way that feels joyful rather than punishing.
I want to get out there. I want to go to new places and try new activities. I want to be less caught up in my head and more in tune with my senses and my body. I’m not going to beat myself up for being so lazy through the winter; instead I’m going to celebrate summer and being in this beautiful city by getting out there and savouring it as much as I can.
And with that, I’m off for a run. Have a wonderful weekend x