The Olympics aren’t always as glamorous as they seem — especially when it comes to canoeing.

On Thursday, New Zealand’s Luuka Jones slipped into second place in the K1 canoe slalom. Photos of the event reveal how physically taxing professional sport is on the individual — in case you’ve been fooled by #fitspo advertising.

'The River Wild' IRL

‘The River Wild’ IRL

Image: AFP/Getty Images

Sport isn’t sexy. It’s gruelling, exhausting and as far from a Victoria’s Secret commercial as you can get. The K1 canoe slalom is a sterling example of this. In this event, athletes must navigate a 250-meter (83-yard) course covered in poles they can’t hit with any part of their body, paddle or canoe. The sport is modelled on the ski slalom but replaces snow with manufactured white water rapids. Read more…

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Being a canoeist is very hard, as these Olympians’ faces clearly demonstrate