Body shaming happens pretty much anywhere, but one of the nation's largest marathons is definitely on the list for most ridiculous place to make comments on someone else's body.
But that's exactly what happened to runner Latoya Shauntay Snell. She recently shared the negative comments a man chose to shout at her as she was nearing the end of the New York City Marathon.
"Between the 22nd and 23rd miles of the New York City Marathon, my home-stretch high was disrupted by a tall, balding white man who felt it appropriate to shout, 'It’s gonna take your fat ass forever, huh?'" Snell wrote in a post on The Root.
What the body shamer at the marathon didn't know, other than when to keep his mouth shut, was that Snell is a seriously strong and dedicated runner, who referred to the sport as her "oxygen." This year's New York City run was Snell's eighth marathon and, shortly afterwards, she competed in an ultramarathon — a 60 kilometer (about 37 miles) race.
She also runs the food and fitness blog Running Fat Chef. Unfortunately, this means Snell has already dealt with more than enough body shamers, as do most plus-size person who share their lives online. She once counted the amount of negative comments she got on her blog over the course of a year, she says in her essay on The Root, and found that she got insulted by online trolls 142 times "simply for being a black, plus-size food-and-fitness blogger," she wrote.
While Snell did initially pause to give the man in the crowd some choice words, she said the real comeback came later, when she finished the marathon, and the feeling of contentment that came with it.
"And in the end, my real clapback that day came from the power of my thick legs shuffling me from New York’s Staten Island, across five boroughs and ending in the drizzling rain in Manhattan," she wrote. "I am powerful because I believe that I am. And I owe nobody an explanation for what moves me."
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