24 Hour Fitness Staff Body Shamed me for being ‘TOO FIT’

body shme

An Open Letter to 24 Hour Fitness, Miramar Club Florida RED Road Location

August 6, 2016

Dear Megan, Operations Manager,

On August 4th 2016, I was working out on the Gauntlet Stepper and you took it upon yourself to come over to me and interrupt my workout to tell me that my ‘shorts were too short for YOUR liking’. At first I didn’t respond to you, not because I was being rude, but because I was in shock. I have been a member of 24 Hour Fitness since 2003 and I am a 6-year member of LA Fitness and a 1-year member of Planet Fitness. Not once has anyone ever approached me in any club, in any state (and I travel A LOT Megan) to tell me my shorts were ‘too short’. In fact, the lady in the neon yellow halter top nearby me had her Double D implants pushed up and all but her nipples showing and you had no issues with her. Then there was the lady in the white tank top with no bra underneath and you could see everything. But you didn’t approach them did you?  After all, this is Miami and SOFLA is known as the ‘sexy city’.

I responded out of confusion mostly to you, with ‘I am not sure what you mean,’ and Megan you asked me to ‘cover up with a jacket, so as not to offend YOU’. Well, I am not sure where you are from but it is August in Miami and most folks down here don’t carry a jacket in the summer with temps in the 90’s and hot humidity. Carrying a jacket is not a norm for us folks here. When I responded by shaking my head ‘no’ (I was really still in shock and by now my client on the phone had heard the conversation and was asking me what was going on) you asked me to ‘change my clothes’. Change into what? A potato sack so you can’t see any of the hard work I put into my legs or glutes? What did you think – I had several sets of workout gear just hanging out in my purse to accommodate your needs?

Then you dropped the hammer. You asked me to ‘wear pants in the gym because (and my jaw must have opened here) my bum was too fit for my shorts?’ WHHAATTTT? Let’s just stop here. Did you just body shame me for being FIT?  Why, yes you did, and in the gym that got my bum that nice heart shape. AND you suggested I wear pants to cover up that nice bum that I worked so hard to get, so as not to offend YOU personally.  I don’t think I even responded. I was in shock, and Megan it takes A LOT to shock me. You did it, you won via Body Shaming. Way to Go Champ!

I won’t wear pants in August in Miami. I don’t sweat because of my thyroid problem and if I wear pants in summer in Miami and workout, I will probably end up in the hospital. BUT, then you wouldn’t be offended calling 911 to come save me because I will be fully covered up from head to toe.  At least I won’t offend YOU Megan. Let me grab that potato sack. I guess my heart-shaped bum is a problem? Isn’t that what we are supposed to achieve by having a membership at 24 Hour Fitness?

Megan, what you don’t know is I spent my entire life being told I was ‘too fat’ and to ‘cover up because I was offending someone’.  Now that I am fit and work my ass off literally to stay fit, you tell me to ‘cover up’ because I am offending YOU. You never said I was violating any 24 Hour Fitness Policy, or any 24 Hour Fitness rule, which I asked you about when I said ‘well, no one has ever once told me my outfit was not appropriate since 2003’ and your response? Classic. You said ‘No one ever told ME until now about your shorts’. I am sorry but when did the dress policy of 24 Hour Fitness become “it is up to the individual employee’s opinion to harass a customer based upon their own concern of offensiveness???” I highly doubt 24 Hour Fitness would leave it up to the employee’s discretion of whom to target and whom not to. But, then again Megan, you are a MANAGER, I am sure you know the policy. Does it contain a Potato Sack clause so my hind end is not too ‘exposed’ for you?

So Megan, Operations Manger at the 24 Hour Miramar Florida location on Red Road, I want to ask you this: Should I, as a customer, be offended that you are clearly out of shape, despite you work at a gym and you should be a model for all of us customers? You should inspire us to want to work out and come to the gym and buy personal training and drinks and merchandise and spend money in the store you have. Should I ask you why you are not in shape? Maybe you have a thyroid issue? Maybe you are pregnant? Maybe you have an eating disorder that I can’t tell from just looking at you? Maybe you eat too much or just don’t care how you look. Maybe you are happy at the weight and shape you are? Maybe you have lost 100 lbs. and are on a diet?

I would ask you, but it is none of my business, I don’t Body Shame.  It is not my place to be offended or to judge you, Megan.

I don’t even notice how you look Megan, because I don’t judge other women: fit, fat, tall, short, plastic. It is none of my business what they wear, or how they look, as long as they are happy. I am not offended when a woman has Double D implants and a tiny waist (I think good for her; her self-esteem is so high she rocks that!) So what made you approach me and tell me how OFFENDED you were with my shorts?  You obviously needed to Body Shame me.

What you didn’t know Megan, is that I have been body shamed my entire life. Too fat, too thin, too fit. Women ALWAYS have an issue. You took me right back to being fat and being told to cover up. The difference now, is I am educated enough to know it isn’t about my shorts, it is about how you feel about yourself that you have an issue with and you directed it towards me in particular. Well, the job location is not the place for this behavior. You should want to make your customers feel secure and buy more items to increase revenue for 24 Hour Fitness and not write articles like these to portray 24 Hour Fitness in bad taste.

I thought a gym is where you come to get your fat body fit, a place you can work out without shame and embarrassment, a safe haven? Apparently Megan, the Operations Manager at 24 Hour Fitness in Miramar, Florida, on Red Road, doesn’t think so. You need to meet HER personal dress requirements, which incidentally, I was one of two white people in the ENTIRE gym.

I approached Tony, the manager, in my shorts and asked him if my attire was appropriate. He not only said it was fine but he also informed me that is NOT a policy of 24 Hour fitness to approach customers and ask them to change or cover up. My baby sister works for LA Fitness and their policy is the same.

Megan, you Bully Body Shamed the WRONG chick. Not only am I going to let 24 Hour Fitness know that you need some help (therapy perhaps?) I will make it go viral as Body Shaming in any form at any time should not be tolerated or accepted, especially when you are working in a gym that wants to have its members fit and happy.

And for the girls and women that are dealing with the Bullies that Body Shame us, I hear you. It affects us at the core, and makes us wonder if we are really OK. Just know you are, and keep doing what you are doing. There will ALWAYS be haters, even at the gym.

 

Cali Estes

www.theaddictionscoach.com

1.800.706.0318 Ext 1