Being assigned a gender at birth forces upon you a lifetime of stigmas, pressures, expectations, and duties in various aspects of living. Our physical bodies are scrutinized, criticized, pushed, and pulled towards all directions based on the norms of other folks.
At some point in my life, and especially when I started transitioning, I began to decidedly reject this. It was easier to recognize the inequity of binary systems as I progressively stepped away from them, and I realized more and more that there is an unacceptable lack of QTPOC-inclusive, fat-positive, and disability-accessible fitness spaces. I searched but came up with very little, and decided - why not do it myself?
LiftyBoi (Minky) working on their gym space. So I pursued a certification and began my journey as a trainer primarily for the communities I am a part of. I got my ACE certification in November of 2019, founded my business LiftyBoi Training, and have been slowly building up to a point where I could open my own space. My goal as a trainer is to encourage growth in strength and to remove the focus on aesthetics. Bodies will always change based on our environment and how the factors within that affect us, and acknowledging that removes the harmful stigma of how fat and gender-based aesthetics are viewed in our society. Fat does not equal unhealthy. Thin does not equal healthy. Men do not need to be cut. Women do not need to be toned. Folks of any gender do not need to subscribe to societal norms of body types. We can be healthy, safe, and strong without getting lost in how our bodies look, and instead, revel in how we feel. Currently, I am working on opening up a gym space for my clients, and am hoping to open in a couple of weeks! Though it is small, I am excited to be able to provide an inclusive and safe space for folks to train in and build a fitness-oriented community within our various marginalized communities.
LiftyBoi, post-top surgery, doing a little flex.
I believe it is in all of us to challenge the industries we work in to open up to the fluidity of gender, allow bodily autonomy, and shift from black/white systems to recognizing intersectionality as a whole. For those of us with the capacity, comfort, and safety to do so - we must speak up, speak loud, and never back down in the face of prejudice. We must always stand strong and fight back for those of us in our communities that are unable to.