Brazilian women are notorious for having killer bodies and it’s tempting to assume they’ve all been blessed with the “supermodel” gene. However, there are two secrets behind that coveted Brazilian beach body:
1- Brazilian bodies, just like those all over the world, come in all different shapes and sizes. In Brazil, it doesn’t matter if you’re tall, tiny, big-boned, pear-shaped, busty, curvy, or flat-chested. It doesn’t matter if you’ve got big feet, thin lips, stubby fingers, skinny calves, or ears that stick out. What matters is that you accept your body for what it is and rock what you’ve got as best you can.
This does NOT mean you should say, “Well, God gave me flabby arms and 25 extra pounds, so that’s the best I can do,” because it’s probably NOT the best you can do. Being fit for a Brazilian woman means that your body, whatever its natural shape and proportions, will be as thin as it can possibly be in a healthy way. Few actual Brazilian women are stick-thin, but just as few, or fewer, have any extra poundage or fat on their bodies.
Get to know your body and learn its limits. Don’t push yourself into malnutrition, an eating disorder, or an over-exercise addiction because you will be unhealthy, and Brazilian women take care of themselves. If you need help, talk to a nutritionist, physical trainer, or a doctor so that you can have a better idea of where your body should be at its healthiest weight and size.
Take a cue from actual Brazilian women. Camila Alves, supermodel and lady-friend of Matthew McConaughey, wears a 6/8 dress size (US sizes), which is a larger than most models, and looks FABULOUS always. Helô Pinheiro, the woman who as a young girl inspired the iconic song “The Girl from Ipanema,” also had some meat on her bones:
2- Brazilian women work HARD to keep their bodies in the best possible shape. What Brazilian women understand is that your body is the only one you’ve got and you need to take care of it. Brazilian women take great pride in their bodies, even if they are imperfect and especially when they are unique, because they always present themselves to the best of their abilities.
The bottom line is, it’s not easy to maintain your body in its ultimate physical shape, and looking like a Brazilian woman requires maintenance and long-term commitment. But remember that Brazilian women rarely compare themselves to other women — it’s all about getting yourself to look your best in your own individual way. Instead of thinking, “She’s thinner than I am, I want to look like her,” adopt the Brazilian mindset so that your thinking becomes “I look really great in this photo because I was in better shape. I want to look like I did then.”
Having been in Brazil for just over a month now, I’ve been inspired to get looking my best as well. After four years on a college diet (heavy on the take-out, light on the exercise) what this means for me is that I need to get back to my pre-college weight and I need to build some muscle. My fitness plan includes cutting out extra fats, carbs, and (sigh) all the extra sweets I like to eat, as well as working out with a trainer twice a week and running on my own at least four times a week. According to Fabiula, the world’s toughest yet nicest trainer (and a lovely Brazilian woman herself), getting in shape slowly means getting in shape for good, so that’s what I’m trying to do.
One thing I’ve noticed is that Brazilian women are extremely encouraging of me (and others) to look good and be healthy. When I spent the weekend at the home of a family friend, my host made an effort to include low-calorie foods in addition to her planned meals (think a main risotto dish that she supplemented with grilled chicken and veggies on the side) so that I could comfortably eat with everyone else without sacrificing my diet or being embarrassed. She did it with no mention to anyone but me, and the gesture was extremely thoughtful and helpful. The moral of this story is, if you’re trying to get in shape and eat healthy, get your friends involved and support each other!
Short and sweet recap:
Brazilian women are as thin and fit as their bodies allow while maintaining a healthy weight and lifestyle, regardless of their bodies’ natural shapes. Accept your imperfections as well as your best features and maintain yourself at your very best.