Being fit (and fairly muscular), I’m used to the stares and the strange and uninvited comments. I get it. I’m kind of a freak when it comes to being a girl. Most of the time I just smile and say something polite. But catch me on a rough day, I may be more likely to roll my eyes and say something very smart-ass back. It’s not that I want to be antisocial. But come on, hearing the same things over and over gets old.
So, what should you not say to a fit chick? Here are a few of my favorites:
- “Do you lift?” What I want to respond is: “Nope. I sit on my ass all day and eat pizza and drink beer … here’s your sign.”
- “How much can you bench (or squat)?” I honestly have no idea. And more than that, I don’t care. It’s not about much I can lift (notice it’s usually guys asking this question). I lift to feel strong and shape my physique. As long as I have great form and reach my goals, how heavy I lift does not matter to me.
- “You’re so skinny (or tiny).” Skinny is a four-letter word in my book. We are not skinny, we are fit. Those two are NOT the same thing.
- “Don’t get too big.” As compared to what? The Hulk? A Victoria’s Secret model? Most people have no idea how heavy I have to lift and how much food I have to eat to get the size I have. Besides, it’s my goal! At this point in my life, I don’t tend to bend to what other people think.
- “Can you give me a meal plan? (Can you train me?)” Why, yes I can. Will I do it for free? Absolutely not. Considering it’s how I pay the bills, I do charge for these services. Alternately, just because a girl is fit does not mean that she is an expert in giving nutrition or exercise advice to others. This requires education and certification in these areas.
- “You don’t look feminine.” While I am fully interested in keeping my femininity, I do not value your opinion. We all have an ideal physique in mind; mine just happens to be more athletic than some.
- “Do you miss your boobs?” Why, yes I do. That’s why I paid to put them back.
- “Are you a bodybuilder?” Technically, anyone who lifts is a bodybuilder. We are building our own physique by way of increasing muscle. The correct question is, “Do you compete?”
- “What’s your secret?” The secret is that I’m willing to do what you aren’t. I watch less TV. Eat less crap. Get off my butt and work out. Eat more often. And I do it all consistently. Hard work. That’s the secret.
- “That’s great for you, but I could never do that.” Yes. You are right. If you don’t think you can do it or even want to, you will never put the time, energy and dedication into doing what we do.
Bonus: Just like a pregnant woman is not automatically OK with you touching her belly, please do not think it is OK to just touch my muscle. This happens more frequently than you would imagine. I have a pretty big space bubble with people I don’t know. Please ask before just reaching out and fondling my biceps.
Of course, these are just my experiences. I’m sure others to could add some interesting ones to this list. I’m aware there are stereotypes surrounding this industry, but most of us are not “roid-raged,” arrogant jerks who live at the gym. I’m a mother of five, formerly obese woman who discovered that she loved to lift weights and teach others how to live a healthy lifestyle.