There’s a question that constantly has my wheels turning and I’ve always asked myself this question in particular…”How can I be seen as being plus-sized if I’m an athletic and active person?”  Everyone’s definition and meaning of the words “plus-sized” are different.  What one person sees as plus-sized, may not necessarily mean that to another.  Society’s view of “average” has changed throughout the years.  Years ago and even today, women are praised for being thin; however, according to a recent study in the International Journal of Fashion Design, Technology, and Education, the average size of an American woman is now a size 16.  Having a curvaceous figure doesn’t have some of the negative associations that it once had.  Women can be proud of their curves, and the world can understand that just because you’re plus-sized, doesn’t mean that you are not healthy or active.


Everyone has their own fitness journey.  Part of the journey is figuring out what workouts you enjoy doing best.  Photo by Scott Chmelar.


I decided to take a deep look and explore my own workouts.  Within this fitness journey I’ve discovered many ways to motivate my workouts with a more focused mindset.  My “pole sister,” Xenia once told me, “Get motivated and move with focus and a purpose!”  These became my daily ultimate goals…finding my MOTIVATION and deciding how I wanted to MOVE.  I wanted this to be the base for my workouts.


I want to encourage others to go a tad further than they did yesterday.  You must have a clear understanding of what you want.  This can influence your attitude when you meet with your coach, when you go to the gym, how you interact with others in your exercise classes, and how you choose to tackle your daily workouts.


Most importantly, we must figure out our main reasons for wanting to get up and workout.  Is it for you?  Your spouse or significant other?  Your friends?  Society?  Hopefully, this will be your opportunity to give a selfish answer and the answer is YOU.  If you don’t want it, it’s not going to happen.  With exercise, you must have a desire to work out.  You must also look at the journey of where you want to go and look back to understand and appreciate the progress that has been made.


It’s always good to switch up your workout completely.  The same circuits and gym visits can become repetitive and lose its’ luster.  Good things to do would be to explore your neighborhood, try out different types of classes, go for a swim or maybe even a run.  All of these are great options.  Choose just one or all of them…just as long as you stay motivated and you’re getting out there.  Once you see how great you feel, reward yourself with positivity.  Your workouts will now have a purpose.  Each rep will be fueled, just like your desire.  Every workout should be seen as a success and becomes a deposit in your motivation bank.  Set aside the time and be creative.  Don’t limit yourself.  You’re going for that inspiration!


Every workout, consider what your goals are.  It doesn’t matter if you’re curvy, plus-sized, skinny, overweight, thin, athletic, or any other body type.  Give it your all and put your heart into it.  Remember that the shape of our bodies do NOT define us.


It shouldn’t matter what size or shape you are, fitness is for everyone. Photo by Leen Isabel of Pole Dancing Adventures.


I chose pole dance fitness because not only is it a great workout, it empowered me as a woman and as an instructor.  So, I’m not going to just send this message out to the plus-sized polers, but to ALL of my fellow polers and fitness gals…Happy Exercising…because the road to fitness is for a lifetime.



Aradia Fitness in Cary, North Carolina debuted their Pole 2eXceL class in January 2017, which is a mixed level pole class that caters specifically to their shapely and curvier students.  To sign up for one of these classes or to view the full class schedule online, please visit


Article Written by Chante Smith, Instructor at Aradia Fitness Cary in Cary, North Carolina

February 21, 2017