By: Mary Fran Bontempo

To hear an audio version of this post, click the play arrow below.



[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”]

ab workout

From Click image for workout info. Or don’t, which is what I plan to do.

Two hours a day.

According to a recent New York Times article, this is the amount of time a 115 pound woman spends at a gym daily in “stomach-centric classes” in order to tighten up her abs. Oh, and she also does 100 crunches at home, twice daily, all because she bought a bunch of crop tops and felt like her abs needed to be “tighter and flatter.”

The same article quotes fashion commentator, Mary Alice Stephenson, as noting the crop top trend “is making women frenzied about shaping up their abs.”

Well, not every woman, Mary Alice.

It’s skin season, again, when the advent of summer brings its annual parade of way too much uncovered epidermis, most often visible on area beaches, where women who have no business wearing bikinis do, but skimpy short shorts also offer peeks at cheeks to anyone who happens to be walking down the street behind (no pun intended) the shorts-wearer.

And now, with the resurgence of the crop top trend, we get to look at bared bellies in line at the grocery store, too.

I remember crop tops. Back in the day, they were called “midriff” tops, and I was never allowed to wear them. (My mother, however, did wear them, even after having four kids. Mom was a hottie.) Now, I’m old enough to make my own fashion decisions, and my decision is this: I’m still not allowed to wear them.

One of the joys of getting a little older (and there aren’t that many, believe me), is that you can close the door on certain things. Things like crop tops, as well as two hours of “stomach-centric” gym classes plus 200 crunches every day.

I wish I had the time for two hours of ab workouts every day, as well as the 200 crunches. I’d never use the time to do the ab workouts or crunches, but I still wish I had it. If I did, I would probably spend it shopping, buying tops that would cover my decidedly not tight or flat abs.

The need to sacrifice around twelve hours a week to a fashion trend underscores why such things are the province of the young. Only someone with no kids, no husband, no aging parents, no house, no dog, etc., etc. has that kind of time. It also underscores why old ladies wear loose clothing. Caftans. Remember caftans? Why can’t they bring those back? I could get behind a fashion trend that not only allows me not to exercise, but would let me keep a days’ worth of snacks hidden in my clothes.

At this point in my life, there are few things that put me into the “frenzied” category. A flat stomach is not one of them.

I wish the tiny girl with the tiny crop tops well. As for me, I’ll be ignoring the trend and sitting on the beach not in a bikini, wearing a giant caftan and eating a Chipwich, grateful for once that I’m too old for something.

What’s your take on the return of the “midriff” top? Click “comments” below and share![/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]