Video: My Thoughts on Being a Fat Woman at the Gym

I made this video very quickly from my iPhone yesterday. I had a lot on my mind from having gone to the gym earlier in the day, and I just wanted to share it as quickly and as passionately as I could.

When I uploaded the video to YouTube, I had completely forgotten it would auto-publish to my Facebook and Twitter streams as well. I left to run errands immediately after uploading the video, but within minutes, my iPhone was buzzing in a successive wheel of responses to the video.

I am grateful to everyone who shared their thoughts and feelings on this yesterday – both your support and your perspective are so appreciated!

To those who haven’t seen this yet, enjoy. Especially if you’re the one – though I don’t know who you are – who was meant to hear it.

  • I love your great attitude! Everyone struggles with fitness goals. It would be so nice to see support replace some of the judgement.

  • You rock! You are not defined by the size of your pants or the number on that treadmill!! Everyone starts somewhere, and you’re rocking it out!!

  • You made me cry. I love you. You’re beautiful. GO YOU! I’m proud of you! Seriously…I laughed…I cried…I loved this video. Thank you THANK YOU!

  • Erica

    I know when I see a “larger” individual working out, I cheer them on in my mind! I’m not one to say anything to them in person but I truthfully think, “Good for you! I hope you are enjoying this to some degree!” There might be someone judging you and you are great to change your mentality about the process. I admire you both for going and working at it and forgetting about everyone else. I’m cheering you on and saying, “Good for you!”

  • DiPaola Momma

    I LOVE going to the gym.. or I did until I overheard a conversation in the locker room about how they should make the “fat chicks” stay in the back of the glass during yoga to “save us from getting sick”. For the record I was the biggest girl in that class and I COULD GET INTO EVERY POSE! You just keep workin’ it because some day your body will match your spirit and not everyone will able to do that.

    • Anonymous

      Wow. I can’t believe some people can actually let words like that come out of their mouths. ESPECIALLY in a yoga class. Clearly, they don’t get it. They should wear some legwarmers and go do some step aerobics.

  • KimMoldofsky

    I <3 you! There is a local indoor track I frequent in the winter, I love that there is such a variety of people there everyday- old men in suits (on the track!), women in headcoverings (Muslim and orthodox Jewish), and and the old man who jogs much slower than I walk. I pass that old man and think- you go guy! Wishing you luck on your family and personal health goals.

  • You, my dear, are an inspiration. Thank you for this.

  • Katie McManners

    I love love LOVE this (wiping my eyes, dang running mascara). Thank you! I attend a fitness class with a bunch of men who are really really fit. There are only 2-3 women at any time in that class. I’m always the last one to finish the intervals and lordamercy I use the lightest weights. I used to think the guys were secretly laughing at me until we did a fitness test. I went last, hoping everyone would go away, but they didn’t. And they cheered for me when I finished. CHEERED ME! Well now. Now I’m crying again. So glad I “found” you! (through Amy B-H).

  • @rachelFerrucci

    I’m so proud of you! It’s hard going to the gym and to stick with such a change. I also just decided to start working out for health reasons! You’ve inspired me!

  • Michelle

    This is great. You are my hero. Not just because of the gym thing. But because you so eloquently described what each of us, as responsible adults, should be doing. Which is: getting on with our lives, doing what we KNOW we should be doing for ourselves, and not caring what the rest of the world thinks. And you’re right: other people don’t focus on us as much as we think they do. Rock on. 🙂

  • Dawntalley

    I think I need to have a t-shirt made that says “I don’t care if I’m the fat woman at the gym”. It better to be fat and IN the gym that fat and NOT in the gym!
    Thanks for your honesty.

  • Davidzmom2

    Hey Stacey, I ususally do not reply on your post’s (but I do watch them) and today I wanted to tell you that I comend you for being you and doing what is best for YOU! I truly believe your persepctive will change about the gym over time, I think you will grow to love the way you feel when you walk out. I think it is wonderful that you are doing this for yourself! I would however like to add, that I was once you, the fat girl at the gym, and now with hard work and perseverance, my outside matches my inside. I adore and appreciate your honesty, YOU GO GIRL! Audra

  • Bravo for you…

    I too am a Fat Woman at the gym also.

    I am there for me!

    I put my headphones on and it’s filled with music I love or sometimes I watch tv and laugh at the Kardashians or whoop out loud at basketball games and get my workout on!

    And I don’t care who’s watching!

  • Mary

    Amen, Sister! So proud of you. This was an awesome statement. Thank you for inspiring so many, Stacey!

  • Anonymous

    At least you go to the gym. Honesty is so freeing, isn’t it?? We are who we are and there is nothing more admirable than wanting to better yourself. GOOD LUCK Stacey!!

  • Molly Gold

    You are WONDERFUL!!! This is so fantastic ~ your message of self acceptance is PRICELESS! I so hope everyone pays attention to this beacon of what really matters is the CORE of who you are ~ life happens ~ your soul is BLINDING with beauty! Goosebumps =)

  • Molly Gold

    You are WONDERFUL!!! This is so fantastic ~ your message of self acceptance is PRICELESS! I so hope everyone pays attention to this beacon of what really matters is the CORE of who you are ~ life happens ~ your soul is BLINDING with beauty! Goosebumps =)

  • Anonymous

    Stacey, you ROCK! I’m seriously jumping up and down doing cheerleading jumps for you! (and breathing heavily with a red face). This is just the mindset I needed when I went back to ballet class last year. My title would have been “chubby woman in ballet class!”

    *SMOOCHES*

  • GAHCindy

    MWAH! Lurve you.

  • I applaud you on what you are doing. I’m that girl in the gym too. In boot camp, I’m always the slowest runner but I keep going. My fellow bootcampers have been very supportive. I have goals for myself and I am going to continue going because it makes me feel good. I didn’t even stop when I fell and bruised my bone. I was slower than ever, but I was there!!

  • I’m standing up in front of my computer applauding you!! High Fives all around! You are Awesome!

  • You are awesome.

  • GREAT FOR YOU!!! YAY STACEY! Hoping you’ll do more gym “testimonials” as you focus on YOU!

  • Oh Stacey! I love this and I am that woman too. Thank you for your beautiful honesty and sweaty inspiration! Back to the gym it is!!!

  • Anonymous

    Love your attitude! Thanks for a great pep talk!!!!

  • Robyn

    It’s crazy the things that society tells us we should find embarrassing. Why should trying to make your body healthy be embarassing for anyone at anytime or any place, no matter what they look like? Thanks for sharing.

  • Stacey. You are SO balls to the wall. Super impressive. xo

  • Anonymous

    You just keep on rockin it girl!!!! 🙂

  • Andrea

    You totally rock! I love the honesty, humor, etc.
    Andrea

  • Anonymous

    Go you! I think that we tend to notice ourselves way more than others do but your point is absolutely spot on – you are there for YOU!

  • Lyza

    I’m not fat. I’m not thin. I’m a size 10, 5’6″ completely middle of the road.. average person.

    When I see “fat chicks” or even “husky dudes” at the gym.. I notice and I judge.. because I’m human. And you know what the FIRST thing that pops into my head is? “good for them, good on ’em.. isn’t that great that they are doing something for their health… isn’t it great they don’t let insecurities about what others may or may not think stop them from doing what they want. wow she can lift 15 more pounds than me on bench press.. great for them.”

    I also see the “skinny minnies” at the gym and I also judge.. because I’m human.. and I usually think “eat something.. and then I think.. maybe they do.. maybe they struggle with being too thin… maybe they are trying desperately to build some muscle so they’ll have some curves… maybe … no matter.. they are at a gym its all good”

  • I’m a fat woman at the gym too babe. I love you so much for posting this. Thank you.

  • Anonymous

    I am so proud of you. Not for going to the gym, but for just being you, and NOT giving a flying flip what any body else thinks. Bravo, bravo.

    I too am a little chunky around the edges, but I’m not at the gym. But I am running around my neighborhood at 6am in the morning with cars driving by who are probably thinking who is that heffalump running in that odd form. Oh well, right? I am proud of myself. And that’s all that matters. Good luck to you Stacey.

  • I think that genuine laugh that spilled out as you were getting toward the end of the video charmed me and convinced me you believed what you were saying more than anything. You are a doll. I love this post and loved the video (found you through patti murphy). My lovely teenager is teaching herself yoga and really wants to me work out with her, doesn’t make fun because I hurt in places she doesn’t, calls me beautiful. If that isn’t incentive, I don’t know what is. Thank you for this. You’re lovely.

  • Hi Stacy, I didn’t realize that the post I wrote on Patti’s post was inspired by YOUR post! Anyway. Here it is. http://blog.elizabethhoward.net/2011/01/26/at-least-she-wasnt-fat/

  • Excellent video, and definitely the right attitude. So many people struggle with the same thing. Your message is encouraging and people should listen to it more than once if they are struggling. I see people struggle with their weight all the time, and they develop a self consciousness that prevents them, rather than encouraging them, to be successful. You have to take it one day at a time, and you have to do it for you. I don’t know why the people who need the encouragement the most, are most often times discouraged by others. Realize it’s a process, but with perseverance you can be successful. Set your goals and your mind and never let anyone stand in the way.

    I found your blog after the article in the Katy section of the Houston Chronicle. It looks great!

    I wish you l much success in your fitness adventure, and if I can ever help in any way, please let me know.

  • Just found this video.  So glad I did.  Thanks for the reminder of not caring what people think of you.  Such a great attitude.  We are all beginners and we all have to start somewhere.  I totally agreed with what you said about how we project our insecurities on others.  Thanks for sharing this great video!