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Blink Fitness Will Feature Real Members—Not Models—In Their 2017 Ads

New Year's Resolutions might conjure up images of crowded gyms, unhappy people, and a lot of self-criticism ("I need to lose 10 pounds"). But one fitness chain—Blink Fitness (an affordable gym with 50 locations in the New York City area)—is starting 2017 on a different note. They just announced that their 2017 ad campaigns won't feature toned, perfect fitness models or pro athletes, but regular members of their gym. (BTW—that's how Shape is feeling about the New Year too. That's why 2017 is all about being your Personal Best.)

ICYMI Blink has already flown its body-pos flag; it all started with their "Every Body Happy" campaign, featuring bodies of all shapes and sizes. The gist: any active body is a happy body. (Seriously—it's time to give your shape some love.) But Blink upped the ante this year by doing an open "casting call" for anyone who belongs to their gym.

In fall 2016, Blink asked their members to post an Instagram flaunting their confidence and explaining why they should be chosen. They narrowed the 2,000 submissions down to 50 semi-finalists and had them audition in front of a star-studded panel; actress Dascha Polanco (Dayanara Diaz on Orange is the New Black) and former NFL punter Steve Weatherford. In the end, they picked 16 people who embodied the various shapes, sizes, and fitness abilities of the members of Blink. The member ads are already rolling out online, on social media, and in Blink clubs. (If you love this, you need these body-positive self-love hashtags in your life.)

While we're all about scoring our best bodies (because there's no shame in wanting to get stronger, faster, or fitter), it's pretty damn nice to see some regular ol' humans in fitness ads, instead of people who dedicate their entire lives to exercise.

And most people agree with that; roughly 4 out of 5 Americans say their relationship with their body could be improved, and almost two-thirds say that it's discouraging to work towards unrealistic body images they see in the media, according to a study commissioned by Blink. That's why they're promoting the campaign with sayings like, "The best body is your body," and "sexy is a state of mind, not a shape of body."

Can we get a "yassss"?


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