Well well well. The sun is shining in the sky above and the frost has melted from the ground, meaning summer is nigh. Law requires you to journey to the beach, where people will gaze judgmentally upon your naked flesh. What shall you do, then?

Shall you head to the tanning salon? Shall you visit Slimming World? Shall you transform your life with the Beachbody home workout videos? Shall you follow the Diet Chef Beach Body Blitz summer diet? Shall you chew your food in a slow, laborious manner to cut calories? Shall you use lighter weights to hit the whole body in one workout? Shall you tone your belly, butt, and thighs with your fat-blasting summer fitness plan? Shall you combine The Biggest Loser, Crossfit, the Juju Cleanse, and the HCG diet into one formidable calorie-sapping cocktail of beach body readiness? Shall you just stick to the magic diet and the magic workout that will give you the magic body in two days, or seven days, or twenty-one days, or just, you know, fast?

No. You shall not. You shall not do any of that. You shall put all of those things and their spiritual kin into a big old garbage pail (notional) and put that garbage pail right into the garbage (bigger pail). Because you do not need one day or one week or one month diets or quick or fast or ultrafast workout plans in order to shape and mold your cranky physical structure into the Perfect Beach Body. You only need one thing.

Nothing. That is what you need. Allow me to posit to you, in the spirit of Ultimate Hardcoreness™, this idea: you have the perfect beach body already. Do you have the perfect body? No. You do not. In all likelihood your body suffers from myriad physical flaws which we won't go into here except to just nod meaningfully at your undeveloped quadriceps. But you do not need the perfect body to go to the beach. You just need your body to go to the beach. The beach—despite being full of assholes, in many parts of the country—is supposed to be fun.

You don't need visible abs to go to the beach. You don't need baseball-shaped biceps to go to the beach. You don't need perfect curves, a slim figure, or a nice tan to go to the beach. You, with the body in which you currently reside, pale/ fat/ scrawny/ mediocre though it may be, should go the beach and have some fucking fun. You should put on your bathing suit, take off your shirt, apply sunscreen, and frolic in the water. You should lay on a towel. You should throw a frisbee. You should even play Pro Kadima, if you so choose. And you should enjoy yourself. The only people who would insinuate to you that you should not do any of these things because of how your body looks are assholes.

Should you work out Ultimate Hardcore™ style all year round in order to infuse yourself with a sense of empowering hardcoreness that will fill you with confidence and energy and contribute to your physical and mental health far more than any desperate vanity-driven crash diet ever could? Yes. Yes you should. But that is a matter of general lifestyle advice. It has nothing to do with your "beach body." You, Shlubby McCouchsitter, have every bit as much right to go to the god damn beach as Mr. Universe does.

Never let some asshole tell you you're not beautiful enough to have fun. For beauty is in the eye—of the Tiger™.

[Image by Jim Cooke]