Holley MangoldWhat would your first thought be if you heard about a 22-year-old woman who weighs 346 pounds? But then what would you think if I told you that this woman is an Olympic athlete?
Holley Mangold, an American weightlifter, is one of many Olympic athletes who are frustrated with the public's scrutiny of their weight. According to Yahoo, other athletes such as British heptathlon champion Jessica Ennis and Australian swimmer Liesel Jones have been called fat, by everyone from us everyday folks to the press.
Such a shame, especially since this is a historic Olympics for the Americans, in which there are more women participants than men. No one would think of calling a 300-pound male weightlifter fat, agreed? It's terrible that people can only seem to point out that they think these women are overweight ... there's just no way in my mind you can be unhealthy yet still be able to compete in the Olympics. And their health is what should be most important!
Want more examples? It seems the Australian media said Liesel Jones "did not look as fit as at Beijing in 2008." British swimmer Rebecca Adlington said she was going to avoid Twitter because of so many insults about her appearance. And the entire Brazilian women's soccer team were called "a bit heavy" by the Cameroon coach. What the hell?
As Mangold tweeted, "I'm not saying everyone is an athlete but I am saying an athlete can come in any size."
The article goes even more in depth -- saying that a negative body image makes women not want to exercise since they believe it's more important to be thin than fit. I mean, I can't even imagine what it must feel like to be in peak physical form to compete on a world stage and still be nitpicked over your weight and appearance. To put your heart and soul into your sport, get in front of an international audience and judges to perform ... only to have people call you fat and ugly on Twitter? Come on, society. Stop sucking.
We really need to back the heck off of Twitter and let these women enjoy representing their countries. Let's talk about how well they're doing instead of what they look like. What kind of message is this sending to young girls? It's terrible that people can be so mean-spirited to poke fun of an athlete's weight over discussing her talent and hard work.
Are you outraged by the unnecessary scrutiny placed on female Olympic athletes over their appearance? I am!
Image via Getty