Too fat for the gym

Now I understand that I’m not too fat for the gym and probably no one is but I can’t fight my irrational fears and shame. I have eating disorder and I’ve gained weight recently. It’s been like this since my early teens. I can’t escape cycle of loosing and gaining it all back. I loose weight for holidays, special occasions, dates and stuff like that. Always gain it back because while restricting I’m already looking forward to the end of the holidays when I’ll be binging until I cry from pain. Now I want to loose weight before I join the gym. I know, it’s crazy. But I’m too ashamed to go there at my current weight. I feel defeated already because all I want is to start living a healthy and sustainable lifestyle but yet in order to do it I feel like I need to loose weight. Why can’t I just be normal. Is there hope for me? I’m tired and my eating disorder is ruining my life


  • rickirenni
    rickirenni Posts: 7 Member
    I hear you loud and clear. I worked out at home (thank you YouTube videos!) and lost about 50 lbs before I started working out in public. I've always yo-yo'd with my weight too, binge eating with special events, holidays, vacations, weekends, you name it. I've been working on slowing down and savoring each bite, and it's helped me dramatically (being mindful of what I'm actually eating). I'm not perfect, but I'm a work in progress and am slowly changing my lifestyle.
  • hypocacculus
    hypocacculus Posts: 68 Member
    It is true that nobody will judge you at a gym but there is no need to go to the gym at all. One of the best exercises is simply going for a walk. There are a ton of exercises you can do at home without needing special equipment.
  • its_cleo
    its_cleo Posts: 544 Member
    Alot of people get scared at gyms, including me. But I kept at it. For me I wanted to lift weights but I was intimidated by these big beefy young guys- bros. I got a trainer to show me the ropes and eventually went to a diff gym.

    As someone else said, walking is great or go to a different gym. I find the chain gyms ie Goodlife the worst environments personally, tho they are cheap. But walking can be great exercise.

    When I see someone at the gym now overweight, I just think wow they are motivated to make a change and I just root for them inside to stick with it, bc I know it's hard.
  • Silent_Soliloquy
    Silent_Soliloquy Posts: 237 Member
    I was also too self conscious about my body to go to a gym when i started

    I got one of those total gym machines with 300 lbs of weights for 300$ on Facebook.

    Added bonus ... no excuse to not use it. It's IN MY HOUSE.

    I also have a treadmill that I overpaid for.

    In the end, if I have to drive somewhere etc etc ... it's just so many excuses to not do it... and at home... I can take my shirt off and no one sees.
  • Bex953172
    Bex953172 Posts: 3,718 Member
    edited February 2019
    I get the feeling that your anxieties about the gym are not the root of your problems.
    Do you have support for your eating disorder?

    Its true that no one gives a damn what you look like in the gym though, and maybe if you tackle your relationship with food and binging then your fears of going to the gym at your current weight will definitely decrease.
    I would work st findjng the right balance of exercise and food to reduce the yoyo-ing of your weight with support if you feel you ard struggling with that!

    Yes there is hope for you!
    It is probably not going to be easy but i would say you could definitely be in a place where everything is balanced and youre happy!
    Good luck!
  • JenniferAndres
    JenniferAndres Posts: 28 Member
    As a bigger gal myself, I get it. And you know what I’ve found out- seeing other “big people” in the gym inspire me to keep going in. - if they can do it, I can too. And you know what else? Sometimes, those that are in better shape, have helped me out. An understanding smile, a pointer here and there, answering my dumb questions every now and then (mostly about how to use the machines they’re currently on), some assistance with a machine I’m on and they’ve noticed I’m having a little trouble, and sometimes just a funny story- have gone a long way towards keeping me going back. I don’t go every day- mostly 2x a week and wanting to do a 3rd. But, at least it’s happening. The other part that helped- talking to one of the gym staff, and getting a “routine” set up. Then I’m not going in there aimlessly, and can build on it- adding exercises as needed. You can do this! And if the gym really isn’t your thing- the other posters had some good ideas and insights.
  • guil0095
    guil0095 Posts: 326 Member
    Be warned though, eventually your utility room will end up looking like this:


    Wow, that's a nice setup! B)
  • missmince
    missmince Posts: 76 Member
    Yeah, I have body image issues and wouldn't want to work out at a gym, however little attention was paid to me. I think a lot of people carry over their memories of what jerks people were in school phys ed (at least at my schools), and feel self conscious among the regular gym goers. Plus, since practically everyone on MFP says they're totally focused on their own activities, if someone makes you feel uncomfortable, no one is likely even to notice unless you complain. Or that's my interpretation of the "everyone minds their own business" comments. It probably would be fine, though.

    I've come to actually like working out at home, mainly using DVDs and downloads. I bought a lot of them initially, but now pretty much stick to Cathe Friedrich videos and DVDs. She has on On Demand subscription for those who want to try without buying everything, and does intermediate and advanced strength training and aerobic and interval style exercise. (plus has forums and a workout manager) I also have accumulated fitness equipment, but it's not as extreme as the home gym above. I've now got a dumbell rack, which has gotten full, a club step/weight bench, resistance bands, mats, and a barbell w/plates, but it's been gradual acquisitions. I sound like an ad for Cathe and exercise videos, but I've learned the style of workouts I like, plus strength training exercises with free weights in the privacy of my home. I can wear anything I want (old Hello Kitty shirts, only an exercise bra, etc) without self consciousness. It's so nice, plus no commute or gym fees. I've also gotten a better attitude towards my body, valuing fit over thin. Recently I've gotten underweight due to illness, and miss being heavier and stronger, a big change in my attitude towards my body.

    Please don't put off working out till you feel comfortable exercising "in public". If you're motivated now, start now. Exercise may help with your body image more than any therapist; it did for me (a former anorexic).
  • CharlieCharlie007
    CharlieCharlie007 Posts: 245 Member
    Be warned though, eventually your utility room will end up looking like this:


    I miss my home gym. Had a linear smith machine, two benches, power blocks, all the attachments. It was great....but.......moved to a house with a much smaller served me well, my friend, you served me well.
  • FatGirlOnaDate
    FatGirlOnaDate Posts: 10 Member
    You are definitely not too fat for the gym! I went when I was 380lbs and my friend came with me who started at 405lbs. There was some equipment that just absolutely wasn't going to work for us, but we were able to happily workout and basically everyone was really nice to us. No fat shaming. No dirty looks. No mean comments. Just smiles and helpful comments.
  • Sharon_C
    Sharon_C Posts: 2,133 Member
    asochable wrote: »
    I know this is a common fear but I want to tell you that no one at the gym cares or is going to judge you for your weight. They are too busy working on themselves! And after going for a few times (3-5) if you still feel uncomfortable, find a different gym.


    I'm a gym rat and I can tell you I don't notice other people. I put my headphones in and I do what needs to be done.

    IMO, anyone who goes to the gym should be applauded for finding time for and working on themselves.

    I know a lot of gym rats and none of them would ever judge an overweight person for taking control of their health.
  • Rivers2k
    Rivers2k Posts: 380 Member
    For the first time ever I understand this. I put on a bunch of weight this year. I can list a number of excuses why but it doesn't matter but one was an 18 month break from the gym. Beginning of this month I started getting strict with my calories and going back to the gym. I have always worked hard while at the gym I used to be a gym rat. This time was no different I am working hard. For the first time I saw people watching me. In my mind I thought they were all thinking look at this fat guy make a fool of himself. but that is my own negative self talk I had to put that away. Were they looking yes! But what they were thinking who knows and who cares. I am down nearly 12 lbs hit my first goal and hoping to keep going.
  • puffbrat
    puffbrat Posts: 2,806 Member
    MikePTY wrote: »
    Are you in treatment and seeking help with your eating disorders? I feel that these fears are tied to those. If you are, I recommend speaking with your counselor about some strategies to help break free of it. If you are not seeking help, I strongly recommend you do so. There is nothing to be ashamed of with it and it can help you break out of the cycles you have been in.

    I just want to add another vote for this question. OP, what you describe sounds like an eating disorder for which you should be talking with a health professional.
  • jesspen91
    jesspen91 Posts: 1,383 Member
    Be warned though, eventually your utility room will end up looking like this:


    I think your basement is the size of my whole flat!
  • Sarah7518
    Sarah7518 Posts: 22 Member
    I understand what you’re saying! As someone who has a lot of weight to lose, it’s tough. Keep at it though! Im only a week in, but this week I went 6 out of 7 days. Like everyone else, I think most people are there to do their own thing. And if you encounter a jerk,ignore... it says a lot about their character! Good luck.. from the chubby girl on the treadmill :)
  • GrandmaJackie
    GrandmaJackie Posts: 33,019 Member
    @barsukas, I had a fear of the gym too thinking, I was TOO old 54 at the time. My husband actually bought me the gym membership for my birthday. Not because I needed to lose weight but because living in the PNW the winters are horrible. So I decided to why not give it a try. I discovered I was totally wrong about people judging you at the gym.

    Just a little story I wanted to share, I usually go to a Body Works class about a couple times a month. Just because of the time of the class. To make a long story short, a few weeks back there was a new woman there. I know because we talked after class. The class isn’t easy for me and I’m in maintenance within a few pounds. The woman was large, she was struggling but she was doing. I was there at one point in my journey so I made the effort to tell her now good she was doing.

    So the point is maybe I did take notice but I love watching people at the gym. Not to judge but to see what concepts they’re doing. Go for you, who cares what people think, 👍🏼