Call me presumptuous, but given that you are currently visiting our website, I’m guessing that you’re pretty sick of all of the “wellness” quack. If you’re anything like us, you’ve probably had a therapeutic cull of all the Instagram accounts with the phrases clean eating/diet/healthy/wellness in the handle for the sake of both your sanity and your loving relationship with fried chicken. However, we suggest that you make one exception to that rule. Introducing; Wellness Ted. You may have read our recent interview with Instagram’s wellness maverick, Deliciously Stella. Well, imagine her, but with a drawn-on six pack and an endless supply of turkey drumsticks.
As a member of the editorial team at Men’s Health, and a full-time boyfriend/photographer for his fitness fanatic girlfriend (who, incidentally, works at Women’s Health), Ted (real name Edward Lane) found himself perplexed by the Lycra-heavy world that engulfed him. After being bored to death by a “scene that takes itself way too fucking seriously”, Ted decided to have a cheeky pop at the social media obsession with plates of perfectly halved avocados – in a jokey way, of course. A few months later and Ted’s instagram account has garnered almost 6,000 followers who get a kick out of perfectly lit snaps of fish fingers and bottles of HP sauce. Wellness Ted: We salute you.
We spoke to the Instagram #influencer in the name of #content.
ON HIS GIRLFRIEND’S INSTA-FAME
“I spent a year as full-time Instagram husband to my beautiful girlfriend, Amy, also known as Wellness Ed (sounds familiar, right?). It became a quasi-internship into the weird world of wellness and social media – beyond tagging my friend in a meme about dogs, that is. Whether it was advising on whether her feet looked good next to her porridge, arguing because I hadn’t focused properly on her face, or helping construct inspiring captions, Amy was unwittingly creating a monster. I had the visual templates mentally logged and the simmering hatred for Instagram of a man too-often told not to eat his eggs because they hadn’t yet been photographed. ”
“MAYBE PEOPLE WANT TO EAT TURKEY DINOSAURS VICARIOUSLY THROUGH ME”
ON THE BIRTH OF WELLNESS TED
“Beyond using it as a platform to ridicule my significantly better half, it has morphed into an opportunity to satirise a scene that takes itself way too fucking seriously. Even more annoyingly, I think, it’s a scene that takes not being serious too seriously. I’ll admit, I find all the gorgeously fit girls saying, “look at me, I like donuts just like you, and if you eat them too and love yourself – you can be just like me,” irresponsibly insincere. My account is, I hope, a chance to remind people that they need to take a breath, re-evaluate certain posts and realise just how fucking ridiculous some of this stuff is.”
ON THE INTERNET’S REACTION
ON HIS APPROACH TO HEALTH & FITNESS
“I’D RATHER HAVE A SECOND HELPING OF MACARONI CHEESE”
ON INSTAGRAM NUTRIBOLLOCKS
“Instagram is unregulated and full of beautiful people. Why the hell wouldn’t you listen to a sun-kissed, bikini-clad, beach-lounging woman with a flat stomach and sexy butt? If it’s a choice between @sexy_beach_butt telling you to drink a goji berry smoothie and restrict yourself to 400 calories, or @boring_science_nerd telling you to eat complex carbs and add a long run to your weekend schedule, there’s only one winner. People naturally gravitate to what they want to believe. And, sadly, as with everything in life, there are people who take it too far.”
“It’s a load of bollocks. To me the # refers to the culture that has sprung up around the term – and it’s pretty fucking toxic. My girlfriend, much to my amusement, uses her profile as a plinth from which to talk extensively about her bowel movements: which foods upset her stomach and those that don’t. She’s talking about cutting out ingredients because it has a tangible effect on her quality of life, not because Gywneth Paltrow said ban sugar whilst also shoving a jade egg up your vagina. There are the right ways to talk about nutrition on social media and the wrong ways. The problem is that social media has #nofilter and you can be influenced all kinds of garbage if you’re not careful.”
ON DINNER TIME
“My flatmate Bob and I have got it nailed. It’s a bowl of chicken Goujons from Sainsbury’s (don’t go to Tescos, they’re not as good) and then a side pizza. It’s essentially just an extra pizza that we share, but a “side pizza” makes us sound far more well-to-do. It’s a classy household.”
WHAT’S NEXT FOR WELLNESS TED?