Photo: Rob Lang
You know that random Instagram pic of a shirtless hunk you were just drooling over? Or the guy at the gym you looove to watch squat? I'm dating him.
When I say that my boyfriend is a fitness model, there are three reactions I usually get: 1) squealing and "OMG"-ing, 2) disbelief and instant praise ("Wow, really?! How did that happen?"), or 3) total disinterest. Most people immediately want to see pictures. It might seem like some super elusive thing, like dating a celebrity, but we just met in college. (Ironically, my first reaction to meeting him on the beach on spring break: "Wow, that guy is almost too big.") (See: 14 Signs Your Relationship Is #FitCoupleGoals.)
But after dating him for a while, the muscles no longer faze me (though all other men in the world now seem utterly tiny. Sorry, guys.). If anything, I've come to think of his side gig as a fitness model as something comical—and this is why.
All my friends, my mom's friends, and his mom's friends—basically all adult females—get an instant crush on him.
There's that awkward moment when you bring him to a family party and these so-called "adult" women are *swooning* over my boyfriend like Bieber fangirls. This also means I get requests from my mom on the reg: "Can you send me a pic of him? I'm trying to show my boss/friend/cousin, etc." There is something kinda creepy about your mom showing off nearly naked photos of your boyfriend to everyone she knows. (If you want nearly naked fit men, you have to check out our 30-Day Hot Guy HIIT Challenge.)
And there was that one time a woman asked if I was his daughter.
You could blame my baby face, his five o'clock shadow, our three-year age difference, or the fact that he has about 100 pounds of muscle on me. But it's embarrassing, regardless. Um, no. He is not 20 years older than me.
Then there was the time he got recruited to sing happy birthday to a 95-year-old woman at a nursing home.
They all made dirty jokes about it and may have spanked him. Not sure whether to laugh, be weirdly proud, or slightly disturbed.
And let's not forget the time he played an actual stripper as an extra on a TV show.
Luckily, I've gotten used to sharing him (and his sexy bod) with the rest of the world. And he looked smokin' in those cutoff jeans, so I'm not one to complain. He's also moonlighted as a romance novel character, a Greek god, and a sexy cowboy. (Yes, really.)
His social media fans do more elaborate birthday Facebook posts than I do.
They legitimately pull every picture of him that they can find, make collages, and write heartfelt messages wishing him the happiest of birthdays—as if they're BFFs.
He gets hit on by girls—and guys—all over social media and IRL.
I don't think I should feel threatened by "@seximen1," but dude, step off. And ladies, let's stop with the desperate comments. There is such a thing as too many heart-eye emojis.
I love when he's hanging out at my place—but by the time he leaves, I don't have one scrap of food left.
He eats literally all the time. Which is fine, because that gives me an excuse to eat all the time.
And he's always eating crazy healthy, which is great. Except for when I'm craving burgers and ice cream.
It's a fun challenge trying to get him to cross over to the dark side and eat treats with me. (I've literally dangled creme puffs in his face, but he is crazy resilient against my efforts.) Unless it's cheat day, he usually won't go along with my "just one spoonful of ice cream pleaseeee." So I just eat it by myself. (But with these healthy chocolate dessert recipes, at least I don't have to feel guilty.)
It's kind of cool that he can curl a dumbbell the size of me in one hand.
Although I do worry sometimes that he could crush me in his sleep. The weird part: The more time I spend with him, the more I start to feel like we're the same size. Then we walk past a mirror together and I remember his arm is the size of my torso.
If I miss him, I can just go buy him on Amazon.
You may unknowingly stumble across him while shopping for fit gear on the internet. But while you're focusing on whether you like that Under Armour t-shirt, I see the cutie wearing it.
And in the end, I'm just happy I get to see what most other people don't—what's behind all those muscles and that "blue steel" face.