Dad Bod Trend…Please Go Away

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fat hairy man's body holding soccer ball in hand

This “soccer dad” is actually a 24-year-old college student.

The “Dad bod” is supposedly the hottest trend for college men’s physiques right now.

What is it?

Well, based on the blog by Mackenzie Pearson that has helped popularize it, “The dad bod is a nice balance between a beer gut and working out. The dad bod says, ‘I go to the gym occasionally, but I also drink heavily on the weekends and enjoy eating eight slices of pizza at a time.’ It’s not an overweight guy, but it isn’t one with washboard abs, either.”

Hmmmm…. Doesn’t really seem like something that any man should aspire to or any woman should want. I’m not saying a guy has to have shredded abs, biceps the size of beachballs, and an ass that can crack walnuts (although if you want to do that, guys, be my guest!), but this melted candle look is neither a physical ideal nor is it healthy.

Young guys, really?

One of the dumbest assumptions the American college student who wrote the blog makes is: “…if he already has the dad bod going on, we can get used to it before we date him, marry him, have three kids. We know what we are getting into when he’s got the same exact body type at the age of 22 that he’s going to have at 45.”

Good luck with that. A guy who has a beer gut at 22 is going to wind up with an entire keg around his middle by the time he’s 45. I’m not saying people can’t improve their bodies with age – they certainly can – but the type of guy who guzzles beer and eat entire pizzas every weekend is only going downhill fast.

Leonardo doesn’t have a Dad Bod

Somehow Leonardo DiCaprio has become the poster child for the Dad Bod. This is ironic, given that he’s not a dad. He’s also not the kind of twenty-something schlub that needs the Dad Bod label to make him feel good. He’s a 40-year-old enormously talented Oscar-nominated actor who the girls loved in Titanic and the guys loved in The Departed.  His net worth is in the hundred millions.

He could have Gerard Depardieu’s body: gerarddepardieu2x

and he’d still be dating supermodels.

Different Physical Ideals

Everyone has a different physical ideal when it come to the perfect male body. I understand that, and I respect it. Some girls lusted over Edward Cullen’s body in Twilight and some girls prefer Jacob Black. Werewolves seem more cuddly to me…but that’s beside the point.

He’s Worse Off Than Me

One of the reasons Ms Pearson gives for girls wanting a guy with a Dad Bod is that it’s not intimidating:“We don’t want a guy that makes us feel insecure about our body. We are insecure enough as it is.” That is so sad. Lusting after a out-of-shape body simply because it’s more out-of-shape than your own is pathetic. So you can’t be bothered to eat right and exercise and you want a guy who makes you feel ok about that? Lame. It may also explain why North America is getting fatter and fatter (68.7% of the US is overweight or obese). We all feel ok about ourselves because all the out-of-shape people around make us feel better.

The New Dad Bod

I look forward to the day when the Dad Bod is a positive expression that brings to mind the athletic bodies of men who are doting dads and still make confident women’s hearts race.

Here are a few actual dads with bodies that are worth emulating or lusting after, depending on your preference:

chris                     will-smith-in-irobot                                matthew                 usher

And, of course, my personal favourite:


Yup, that’s my Husby. Bringing it home for the legit Dad Bods. Let’s see if we can turn this trend around…or make it go away.

Ivana Chapman 

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Ivana Chapman

Ivana Chapman

Ivana Chapman BSc BA CSCS is a Canadian fitness and nutrition coach, happy wife, and mom to an energetic 8-year-old boy. She is a YouTuber, writer, published fitness model, speaker, 3rd Dan black belt in Shotokan Karate, former World Cup Karate Champion, one-time marathoner, and CBBF National level Natural Bikini competitor. She loves weight training and chocolate, not always in that order of preference.
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