This Target ad totally nails what it means to be an athlete. And yeah, it's a big deal.

An athlete is anyone who moves their body for the fun and thrill of moving it, regardless of size or ability.

Target's latest ad gets that in a major way.

The latest campaign for the company's activewear line, C9 Champion, showcases badass athletes kicking butt at any age and size and in any activity or discipline. These are real people with real bodies we need to see more of.


There's a black man doing yoga on a football field. And why shouldn't there be? Go 'head on, brother.

All GIFs via Target/YouTube.

A young kid shreds on a skateboard, having the time of their life. See you in the X Games, kiddo!

A woman with a disability zips up a rope, making a hard feat look effortless. You're killing it!

And teen ballerina Lizzy Howell even makes an appearance, doing dazzling pirouettes. Rock it, girl!

These athletes aren't the exceptions; they're the rule.

No matter your size, shape, ability, or activity, there is no wrong way to be an athlete.

It doesn't matter what your middle-school P.E. teacher said or what runs through your head while you're at the gym. You may not get paid for what you do or even be especially good at it. But if it makes your heart happy and keeps you moving, congratulations, you're an athlete.

Seeing people of different abilities, body types, sizes, backgrounds and ages celebrate their bodies and strength is empowering and affirming.

Actor Riz Ahmed said it perfectly in his lecture on diversity and representation at British Parliament: "Every time you see yourself in a magazine, on a billboard, TV, film — it’s a message that you matter, you’re part of the national story, that you’re valued. You feel represented."

Real representation and visibility connect us to people who aren't like us and challenge our expectations of what different bodies can do. Some people may not think of black men as graceful or lithe or even recognize that plus-size ballerinas exist, let alone shine.

Target's ad is proof that even 40 seconds of representation can change minds. But we need more. Imagine what a blockbuster movie or a slate of new children's TV shows could do?

Image via Target/YouTube.

Albert Einstein

One of the strangest things about being human is that people of lesser intelligence tend to overestimate how smart they are and people who are highly intelligent tend to underestimate how smart they are.

This is called the Dunning-Kruger effect and it’s proven every time you log onto Facebook and see someone from high school who thinks they know more about vaccines than a doctor.

The interesting thing is that even though people are poor judges of their own smarts, we’ve evolved to be pretty good at judging the intelligence of others.

“Such findings imply that, in order to be adaptive, first impressions of personality or social characteristics should be accurate,” a study published in the journal Intelligence says. “There is accumulating evidence that this is indeed the case—at least to some extent—for traits such as intelligence extraversion, conscientiousness, openness, and narcissism, and even for characteristics such as sexual orientation, political ideology, or antigay prejudice.”

Keep Reading Show less

'Merry Christmas' on YouTube.

The world must have been—mostly—good this year. Because Elton John and Ed Sheeran have teamed up to gift us all with a brand new Christmas single.

The song, aptly named “Merry Christmas,” is a perfect blend of silly and sweet that’s cheery, bright and just a touch bizarre.

Created with the holiday spirit in every way, it has whimsical snowball fights, snow angels (basically all the snow things), festive sweaters, iconic throwbacks and twinkling lights galore. Plus all profits from the tune are dedicated to two charities: the Ed Sheeran Suffolk Music Foundation and the Elton John AIDS Foundation.

I personally don’t know which is more of a highlight: Ed Sheeran channeling his inner-Mariah, performing a faux sexy dance in a leg revealing Santa outfit, or him flying through the air with a giant Frosty the Snowman … who seems to be sporting glasses similar to Elton’s. Are we meant to believe that Elton is the Snowman? This music video even has mystery.
Keep Reading Show less