Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Letter to the Skinny Girl Judging the Fat Trainer

Recently, we were directed to read a strongly worded blog post titled "Letter to the Fat Trainer at my Gym." You can read it by clicking the link above. We were put off her by assumptions that all fat people were lazy, and decided that while some readers also made good points against her, we would like to directly rebut her letter.
This is our response to her, and we hope that you will participate in this conversation. Just as it isn't fair to call all skinny people "anorexic", it's not fair to call all fat people "lazy."

Dear you, skinny girl with strong opinions,

It's been over 7 years since our founders Marty & Amy Wolff realized that fitness isn't a "one size fits all" approach. It's not always easy to control eating when our culture promotes unhealthy foods as the cheaper alternative. But with the right supportive environment and a focus on overall health rather than a specific size, it is an attainable reality for our clients.

But then we go online, and we see hateful and hurtful comments from people such as yourself who feel the need to associate size with laziness. This is when we get mad.

Did you know, skinny girl, that when you spread this assumption you are just perpetuating the myth that ALL fat people are lazy, unmotivated, and bad examples? Did you know that words are as hurtful as actions?

When our owner Marty was young, he was bullied by his classmates for being chubby. He learned that people judged him on his appearance and that no matter what he did, he would be looked at as the "fat guy who does theater" or the "fat guy who tells funny jokes" rather than as the smart and motivated person he was.

Why are we telling you this, skinny girl? Because just like every judgmental person in the world, YOU have the power to tear down someone that you don't even know, which makes you a part of the problem, not the solution. You need to motivate all types of people and make weight conversations a two way street rather than perpetuating stereotypes.

What makes you think that skinny people are any more motivating than fat people? We don't think so.

The problem with fat people is that the typical gym environment is intimidating. And the reason why it is intimidating? Because people like you are there judging them and assuming they are lazy and treating them differently before you even get a chance to meet them. When we think of our dream body, we think of a healthy and pain free body in toned shape.

We don't think of you, with your thinness that promotes within you a sense of entitlement to cruelly look down on others. As a trainer, you should set an example of a kind spirit willing to help people of all sizes achieve health and not look down on others who are also helping others achieve health even if they are larger.

Every time we see someone like you post ignorant statements, we feel pity for the people who listen to your "professional" advice and model your hateful behavior toward others. Poor, poor reader who came to your blog to learn more about how to become healthy and instead walked away with the mistaken idea that being fat means you are lazy and deserve to be called names.

My first question would be: What makes you the expert on obesity? You've never been fat? I guess that means you don't ACTUALLY know what you are talking about.

Stop your denial and GET OVER YOURSELF, for goodness' sake!

Now on to my next point.

Did you know, skinny girl, that most fat people would avoid any and all contact with a trainer such as yourself because of how mean you are?

Did you also know that there are now better solutions, such as Square One, to help People of Size avoid having to deal with people like you at all? That the people who you could gain the most by helping would rather spend their money elsewhere than train with someone like you who comes in hating them?

You're mean? Oh please, keep it to yourself so the rest of us can train those that you have given up on!

It's already difficult to just show up at a gym for most fat people, so why are YOU discouraging them?

Assume that you may not know everything about how hard it can be to lose weight when you are bigger, instead of acting like a true bigot while they are taking the steps they need toward better health.

I'm sorry for the people that you hurt or turned off of fitness, skinny girl, but what made you better than anyone else anyway? As entrepreneurs and specialists in working with people needing to lose 50lbs or more, we just can't understand why someone as unfeeling and cruel as you would even want to bother being a trainer if you only relate to skinny people. You need to wake up every morning and re-evaluate whether you care enough about others to truly help them to lose weight, or if you are only interested in superficial qualities such as thinness.

Don't try to convince us that your job is your passion if your hateful words scream that you find all fat people lazy.

We don't have a problem with personal trainers, just a problem with trainers who don't take a step back and learn more about someone before judging them. To create a healthier world, you have to be the kind of leader to stop the hurtful cycle of stereotypes and start creating real solutions.

So now it's up to you. You can rant against us for standing up for People of Size - especially those that take the step to become trainers themselves to help others - but you know that we actually have a leg to stand on when it comes to being experts on People of Size. What's your next move?


Jess Buike, Manager
Square One Health Club

P.S. What are YOUR thoughts on our rebuttal to Gen's original blog post? What's YOUR opinion about working out with a "fat" trainer? Let us know in the comments below!!

Want to know more about Square One? Check us out at www.square1club.com or give us a call at 402-333-0706. You can also find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/square1club .