Anderson took to Instagram to make the announcement, mirroring Smith with a pose that came in loud and proud, with hands-on-hips as he showed off his pandemic pounds. Like so many who found themselves under lockdown with limited options available by way of exercise, the pandemic weight gain is a thing, no doubt aided by the stress and anxiety many of us experienced that led us towards the comfort food in the fridge.
Just last month, Anderson expressed via video that it was time for his summer body to prepare for the season. Now, he’s going all in on Smith’s fitness challenge, otherwise known on the ‘gram as #BigWillieChallenge. “So this is what we doing,” Anderson wrote in the post’s caption. “12 weeks! No trainers! All on our own?! Challenge accepted! Let’s go!”
Similarly, Dr. Dre shared a selfie to Instagram in which he acknowledged his fitness blow-out and vowed to get back in shape. “This is my COVID body. I’m about to start getting my shit together,” he wrote. “Going in with @willsmith. Let’s Go!!!”
To be fair, Dre’s photo isn’t all that bad. In fact if this is what the rapper and entrepreneur looks like out of shape, we’re anxious to see what “in shape” looks like for the star. Standing in an empty gym in a white tee and black sweats, Dre lifts his shirt to show some pretty visible abs and a rather muscular physique. If anything, it looks like the rapper has a head start on others taking part in the challenge - but we all have to start somewhere. Even Smith commented, “Damn! Your covid body is the rest of our best shape, Dre!”
That Dre is getting back in shape is welcome news, particularly after some recent health struggles. In January, aged just 56, Dre experienced a brain aneurysm which required a long period of hospitalisation. He later thanked everyone for their well wishes, and it looks like finally Dre seems to have fully recovered as he embarks on a fitness journey.
In Smith’s post, he wrote a poignant message: “This is the body that carried me through an entire pandemic and countless days grazing thru the pantry. I love this body, but I wanna FEEL better. No more midnight muffins…this is it! Imma get in the BEST SHAPE OF MY LIFE!!!!”
You’ve got to love the confidence. Since sharing it to his 52 million followers, countless people have reached out to Smith with their own dad bods. In a gallery posted to his Instagram account, Smith shared several photos of guys proudly showing off their tum, and he’s now challenging them to shoot the after pic in 12 weeks.
Smith might not have expected his selfie to go viral, but in posting his dad bod he’s given voice to countless people who felt self-conscious about their bodies. Rather than mock and ridicule one another, he’s creating a community for those to stand in solidarity with their dad bods as they make the push to create healthier changes and lifestyle habits.
Given his celebrity status as well, it’s likely Smith will enlist a few Hollywood stars to help him along the way and keep others motivated. Actor Marlon Wayans has already joined in this week with a shirtless selfie of his own, setting the goal of having a “sick” body by late July. If ever you needed some inspiration to get fit, take your cues from Big Willie.