Everyone is at the damn lake. My friend Heather and her family, my runner co-worker and his boat and seemingly anyone and everyone who takes BODYPUMP at my gym.
As for me? I have no idea where the lake is. There's only, oh, 5 bajillion lakes with a 2-hour drive from Fort Wayne and everyone goes to the one. It seems the closest I'll be getting to a body of water is the turtle sandbox-turned-kiddie pool in the backyard. (Thanks for the idea, Jess!)
Life is a beach and then you die. Truly.
But my less-than-waterfront vacation arrangements doesn't mean that I won't be put in the dreaded situation of wearing a bathing suit in front of people. There are 12 people alone who could see me in all my tankini glory as I tramp out to the turtle with Miles. Yeah, our neighbors have eight kids.
And while I could try to find some shorts or simply leave my summer clothes, especially as Miles isn't up for sharing his digs, to stay covered and confident, it's too damn hot to let a little insecurity get the best of me.
I've searched high and lo (and left and right) to come up with beach babe tips, and I now present to you the ultimate (or a mediocre one at least) guide to beach bum confidence.
You can't look and feel good if you don't take care of yourself. I'm not talking just eating right and exercising - I'm talking about skincare. Slather on the SPF and get a cute hat. Protecting your skin will keep you from that dreaded blistery red complexion I know all too well.
Check your insecurities at the parking lot. The extra crunch or tricep dip you were hoping to do last night isn't going to help you now. Accept that you have the body you have for better or worse, and you should love it. No one - absolutely no one - has a perfect body and those who might come close aren't likely to be on your beach. Those walking the sand are more likely to be the 75-year-old man in a banana hammock than Gisele in all her airbrushed glory, and Mr. Hairy Back doesn't care if you have cellulite.
Find confidence in something other than a flat stomach ... unless, of course, you have one. Buy yourself a new bathing suit or beach accessory for your trip. I'm willing to bet you'll feel a bit glam in a big pair of sunglasses and bedazzled sandals.
Wear a suit that fits and flatters. I've been dying to wear a bikini my entire life, and I thought that once I was a healthy weight that I would be able to. There's no stopping me, I guess, but I don't feel comfortable in the suits. Instead, I opt for a tankini or even the dreaded one-piece. In fact, on a recent shopping trip, I was surprised to find that I actually liked a one-piece better. The suit didn't create any unflattering lines and there was padding in the cups. Just a shame it wasn't in my size.
Don't just lie there. Sure you just got a cute beach towel, a new book on the Kindle and you are dying to improve that runner's tan but you'll feel much better about yourself if you move around. We might not be able to run with a stroller on the beach ala Running Chronicles but try some volleyball, Frisbee or simply racing a friend to the water.
The same goes for eating. Load up your beach tote with healthy snack and beverage options - nimble bars, water, True Citrus, almonds, fresh fruit.
Don't take yourself too seriously. The beach is all about relaxing and having fun. Do it.
What are your tips for being a beach babe?