The secret fear of a fitness blogger



I like being active and I like writing, so blogging about fitness makes sense.

But I have to confess, I feel like a fraud a lot of the time.

I often feel like a fraud when I go to events. I enjoy going because I like meeting people and having the opportunity to try out new things. But surrounded by long-legged lovelies, I feel like I don’t belong. In exercise classes when everyone is effortlessly bounding along in perfect synch, I’m the one sweating and going left when everyone else is going right.

I’m the one who asks for a size large t-shirt. I don’t have a flat stomach. I have that dreaded chub-rub where my thighs touch. When I’m dripping with sweat and struggling to keep up, I feel like I’m fraud, like I don’t belong and I wonder why the hell I’m even there. And yes, I will go to the pub after and have that beer.

I should add, NO event organiser has ever done anything to make me feel inferior. Most of this is in my own head.

The time that really stands out to me as feeling like a fraud was at a press event in the summer. We were led out on a run and I’m not stupid, at an event for fitness writers, I know I’m likely to be the slowest one there. Knowing this, I went and asked what the pace was going to be.

It’ll be easy, don’t worry.

But what is easy to one person isn’t easy for another. What’s easy for one person is a huge achievement for another. At this point, my fastest 5k of the year was 32 minutes. I explained that. Once again, I was reassured it was easy.

Off we went. I was running at 9.30 m/m pace and was struggling to keep up, falling further and further behind, breathing hard and sweating. The others were effortlessly gliding along, taking photos, chatting.

I felt terrible.

My running has improved a lot since then. But the feeling of being a fraud in the fitness blogging world still hangs over me.

I’m not really interested in supplements. I’m not fussed about protein powder. I’m a size 14 with a “mum-tum” (shudder, hate that phrase) and a c-section pouch. I’ve also completed two marathons with a third round the corner. I don’t find it easy, but I do enjoy moving and being in control of my body after last year is something that is so important to me.

I just want to encourage people to be healthy. Don’t deprieve yourself, have a slice of cake sometimes. Just try to move around, make healthy lifestyle choices and have fun doing it.

A friend of mine once told me that she was scared to go out and run in case people laughed at her. I have that fear too. Because it happened to me. I tried not to let them win by going out and running and finishing the race. But the fear is still there.

The secret fear of this fitness blogger? Being laughed at for not being very fit.

For anyone scared of going out and moving – go out there and do it. You’re doing something that most people aren’t. And for that, you’re awesome. You’re not alone in the fear.

7 thoughts on “The secret fear of a fitness blogger

  1. Awesome post, and I know how you feel. But, fitness is all relative, like you say. And we’re only ever competing with ourselves, unless we’re up there with the big boys at the front. Which, tbh, doesn’t look much fun, they never get the crowds at races because everyone’s still in bed :)

  2. Thanks for writing this. I know exactly how you feel.

    During the first couple of years of my PhD I experienced imposter syndrome. I’m now experiencing fitness blogging imposter syndrome.

    Although I have the long legs (not actually ideal for running), I’m a size 12 with more of a muffin top than a 6-pack. Although I’m at my heaviest, I’m also at my happiest.

    As a teenager I suffered with disordered eating. I was seriously underweight and looking back, my unhealthy eating habits were influenced by magazines/TV. As a slightly more sensible adult, some of the fitness bloggers and #fitspo posts concern me.

    I suspect you are a lot happier and healthier than a lot of the fitness writers you meet.

    1. Thank you for such a thoughtful comment and for sharing this. I’m really glad you’re at your happiest now. As you say, some of the #fitspo posts in particular are concerning, also #thinspiration.

      Also hear you on blogging imposter syndrome – I also feel like that a lot of the time and worry if it’s because I don’t “look” like a fitness blogger.

      Thanks for posting Emma x

  3. We are all always way more critical of ourselves than others are of us – remember that :D But I do know what you mean – I’m fit but I don’t have a six-pack and I don’t have a YouTube channel for fitness videos :) I don’t go to very many fitness blogger events because I do feel a bit out of place too. But maybe that is exactly why we SHOULD go to more of these things and blog more about fitness – fitness is not about looking like you just stepped off a #fitspo photograph!

  4. I hear you! I’ve started running with my aunty and at first we chose routes away from the general public as much as we could. But now I’m feeling fitter, stronger and more confident that I don’t care where I run just as long as I’m doing it. You are an inspiration as I’d much rather hear advice from someone who does drink that beer in the pub after than someone who doesn’t! Xx

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