The question: What do you think about the waist trainers that have been popularized by the likes of the Kardashians? Should I invest?
The answer: No! Invest in literally any other fitness product.
If my answer seems more blunt than usual, it is because everything about this product makes me want to scream. The waist trainer is pseudo-scientific garbage that reproduces an aesthetics-first fitness discourse that is completely unrelated to health, and totally anathema to my views on the subject.
Adopting a healthier lifestyle should be about feeling more energized and empowered, not trying to achieve an unrealistic and unhealthy aesthetic.
The waist trainer purportedly reshapes your midsection by increasing the amount you sweat and bracing your core. These claims are, in my professional opinion, ridiculous. Sweating on its own doesn't change the shape of your body.
What does? Being mindful of your diet, weight-training and moving more.
Plus, long-term use of any device that braces your torso is a recipe for future back injuries. We all have a natural brace: our core. Do some planks instead.
Adopting a healthier lifestyle takes dedication and perseverance. There is no miracle solution. To make long-term changes, you have to address the underlying habits, emotional triggers and addictions that precipitated your original weight gain. Figure out not just what you eat, but how much you eat and, most importantly, why you eat.
Kim Kardashian looks like Kim Kardashian not because she has found some miracle product, but because of her genetics, the work that she has put in and the team of people she has working for her.
Most people don't have the genetics to look like a Kardashian, even if they bought 50 waist trainers.
Please don't aim to be someone you aren't. Aim to be the healthiest version of you that you can be.
Genetics may predispose your body to aesthetically react in a certain way to exercise. For example, you may develop muscle more or less easily then your friends. But regardless of how you look, moving will definitely make you feel better. You are only one workout away from a better mood!
Trainer's tip: Forget about miracle products. Invest in a skipping rope: Warm up with five minutes of light skipping, then alternate one minute of skipping with one minute of strength work. Try squats, lunges, push-ups or planks. Repeat five to 10 times.
Kathleen Trotter has been a personal trainer and Pilates equipment specialist for over 10 years. Her website is kathleentrotter.com.