“Girl, what she got on?!” I remember the first gym class I took. I heard one woman near me whisper this to her girlfriend. Albeit, she might as well have yelled it because that entire side of the room heard her. I swung around because I thought she was talking about me. What was I wearing? Clothes that I don’t care about because I’m about to sweat in them, that’s what. I was about to check her until I saw she was referring to the young lady that had just walked in. She had the same philosophy as me when it came to gym clothes, except she wasn’t matching. She had on gray yoga pants, a Mighty Mouse shirt, purple socks, and lime green shoes. I remember thinking, ‘Why are these chicks worried about her? You need to be worried about getting your workout in and why you’ve have been the same size for year, but I digress.’ They snickered, then a few minutes after that, class began and I blocked that out of my mind. On my drive home that night, I was in deep thought. Why do we feel the need to obsess over looking good at the gym? We’re at the gym for Christ sakes!
My personal belief is that this type of thinking can be traced back to the onset of puberty and the pettiness that follows us into high school. I was teased mercilessly all the way through school and I could care less really. I always followed the beat of my own drum and my friends will tell you I was a straight up weirdo. I even went natural with my hair for a short time in school and boy, did I get it. You would think I came to school buck naked or something. Pointing fingers, laughing, head shakes, I got it all. My big forehead didn’t help it, but I’ve never been afraid to take risks. As a good friend of mine would say, this is me.
The fact that we feel pressure to dress up for the gym is a shame. I’m guilty. Since I wear wigs, I go to the hair store and I make sure to find do rags to cover my natural hair that match most of the clothes I have already. I skim through my clothes in the morning to be sure that what I pack hasn’t been worn recently, so on and so forth. It’s psychological. You can probably say, middle and high school scarred me more than I’m willing to admit. Maybe. I know that from all this self-reflecting, I’ve come to one conclusion. So. What. Who gives a crap what you’re wearing at the gym? Ladies, if you’re willing to let something that trivial get in the way of your healthy lifestyle goals, then you’re not ready for this. Life will throw worse things at you than whether the color of your socks match your T-shirt. Worry about your workout and getting yourself on track to a happier and healthier you. Do what makes you happy wearing what makes you comfortable.
Shana is a 25 year old communications professional who took her health into her own hands and started her weight loss journey mid 2010, but really took charge when she was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in 2012. She will be launching her health and fitness blog Big Boned Gets Toned! on May 6, 2014. You can view her Big Boned Gets Toned! weight loss vlog on youtube http://ow.ly/vbvYs