Exercise! - Locker Room Fears

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01-28-2008, 03:20 PM
I recently started going to the Y, but am back in high school again when it comes to the locker room. I go back to the bathroom stalls to change, because everyone in there is all fit and skinny and do not want to be stared at (or to be thinking that I am being stared at). Just not comfortable with that yet. Actually, due to upbringing, not sure if I ever will be, regardless of weight. Does anyone else feel this way, too?

The same goes with the showers. I would love to take a shower, because I push myself hard and am always in need of one after. But to avoid the possibility of being seen without my clothes, I just rush into a bathroom stall and change to my "regular" clothes, sweat and all. My house is almost an hour from the Y, so it is a yicky feeling. I wish they had showers with spots for a robe or something inside of it, so the exposure would not be necessary. Please tell me it is not just me!

01-28-2008, 03:24 PM
I was/am the same way, but I haven't dealt with locker rooms in a few years.. As far as the showers, I'd just throw a towel over the door and I didn't care if it got a little wet.. I wasn't going to do the butt-naked parade.

If all else fails and you can't find a way to work it out with some kind of coverage apres-shower - worst case scenario, you can get one of those large zip-loc bags, put a towel or thin robe in it and then just keep it in the shower with you if you're desperate. Only thing I can think of. I wouldn't want to go home sweaty - I itch just thinking about it!

01-28-2008, 03:44 PM
Please tell me it is not just me!

Oh, it's not just you! I was 30 lbs heavier than you when I started going to the Y, so please realize that not everyone is skinnier than you! Believe me! I've lost 50 pounds since then, but when it comes to changing in public, I still change in the bathroom stalls, because that's also the way I was brought up. lol.

But no, I would never walk around naked to get to the showers (even if I weighed much less). At my local Y, there are little hooks beside each shower and I wear a short bathrobe to and from the shower. Maybe you could suggest this to the management. (I mean, they can't be very expensive to install, and I bet a lot of other people feel the way you do, but haven't spoken up about it.)

And it may sound funny, but at my Y, only 2 of the showers' curtains are long enough to close completely, I always wait until one of those two is free to shower so I don't flash everyone who walks by. lol. So I really do understand how you feel, don't worry about it! :)


01-28-2008, 03:49 PM
I went to a private Christian school where it was sinful to undress in front of anyone, even the same sex. So there were change rooms installed (like bathroom stalls, but little benches instead of toilettes). We had to go to class sweaty, so I would usually bring a change of clothes, baby wipes to wipe myself down, and fresh deodorant to keep myself fresh.

There was only one shower, and that is in a room where you can lock the door, but is was only for emergency use (e.g. someone puked on themselves, something spilled on someone during lunch etc)

01-28-2008, 05:30 PM
I don't go to a gym, but when I was still in the traditional public schooling system(I'm home schooled now) (Yes, I'm young) we were not allowed to go into the bathroom stalls to change. In fact, the female gym teacher would stand in the locker room and scream threats of detention at us in case we had the idea of doing so... It was awful, seeing as I've had a severe phobia of changing in public since.. well, forever. It's not necessarily the same situation but still fear-inducing.

01-29-2008, 02:04 PM
I don't have a fear of being seen in a locker room; however, I do go to the park during the summer months to jog. Afterwards, I have to go shopping or various other errands. I go into the park bathroom stall and use baby wipes and deoderant to clean up, and wash my hair in the sink. They have a plug in there at least so I can run the dryer. ;)

01-29-2008, 02:37 PM
I change in a bathroom stall too. I might be able to do most of the changing in front of other people, but not the bra.

01-29-2008, 04:26 PM
Thank you all for your posts. It is very refreshing to know I am not the only one. Maybe it is the hours that I go or the sort of "you only see what you want to see" things, but when I am at the Y, I always feel like the other women are all there to tone up. They all seem so beautiful and thin and seem to have no trouble walking around naked or half naked in the locker rooms. If they are comfortable with it, then more power to them. I agree with one of the posters who gets uncomfortable seeing it, too, though. Dunno. Thank you for letting me know that I am not alone and that it is not that ridiculous or unordinary to change in a stall. When I signed up for the Y, I sat in the parking lot for almost an hour and a half before finally going in to register. Seeing all the fit people should have been motivation, but instead I was worried about what they would think about me. And then the first time that I went to workout I felt very silly getting on a treadmill between two people and going so slow when they were both running. Am glad I am doing it though. It does really help to know there are others, even if they do not go to my Y. heh

01-29-2008, 04:54 PM
I thought it was just me that felt this way! At least at my gym everyone seems totally at ease to wander around half naked...I change in the stall too, and when its time for a shower I pretty much rush to get in there so I'm exposed as little as possible, and I leave my towel right outside the curtain so I can reach out and grab it without having to get out, and then I exit the shower with it wrapped around me as best I can and can usually manage to get my panties on at least without removing the towel...its all about being as covered as I can the whole time. I think even if I had a supermodel body I'd still be doing this...at least then the towel will cover more area! I also try to be in the locker room at off times, as I go to the gym at the school I work at, most people try to fit their workouts in their lunch hour or between classes, I make a point when I go to take my lunch at odd hours like between 12:15 to 1:15 so its mostly empty.

01-29-2008, 06:34 PM
I could never do the no-stall shower thing, even if I weighed 110 pounds.

And I couldn't change in front of a lot of people, either. The gym I go to has a few changing rooms and shower stalls, but I almost never even use them. I just throw on a sweatshirt and go home! So yes, you're definitely not alone as it seems this thread has shown.

02-02-2008, 12:38 PM
I weighed between 130 and 132 in junior high and still wasn't comfortable changing in front of the other girls for gym. I mean, I did it, but I wasn't comfortable with it, and wouldn't just stand there nude. I'd dress quickly and be wondering if anyone was looking at me. I don't think it always has to do with weight.

02-03-2008, 11:49 AM
When I joined the local gym my twins were about 15 months old. Before I joined I would be lucky if I managed to find time every three days to shower.

I LOVED going to the gym. We had private stall with dressing areas and I probably spent more time in the showers than I did on the treadmill some days. A shower with unlimited hot water. I was in heaven. ;)

We did have a few girls that would parade around naked on their way to/from the shower. They weren't skinny girls either and it still made me a little sad. But maybe they started out really big and they were proud of their new bodies.

02-03-2008, 02:53 PM
Count me in too! I swim laps and will start the c25k tomorrow at the local community center and I change in the stall too and as for a quick rinse off, I do so with my swim suit on, lol! I just carry a large zip lock for my wet clothes and dry'em when I get home. :)

02-03-2008, 03:03 PM
It all depends on the culture you come from. Some European beaches are completely nude beaches - the whole family from the father, mother, daughter and son go there and swim completely in the buff. Yes, the father sees the daughter naked and the son sees his mother naked and the kids might be in their teens. Still, they are all comfortable with it while seeing other families naked as well. Americans are stereotypically prudish about this whole thing.

As for me, I would dress under my towel in the gym. I hate changing in front of other people and do it as fast as possible if I have to be out in the open!

02-22-2008, 09:20 PM
I wish my Y had stalls like some of you mentioned. It would make the time getting dressed and undressed so much quicker. Instead, I balance my old clothes on backpack hanging on door while getting new clothes on, et cetera. The door always bangs back and forth when I touch my bag. And, the most fun part, the toilets are those "no touch" kinds that flush automatically, so it flushes every time I move it seems. They could save a lot of money on water by building a few toiletless stalls! =)

02-23-2008, 03:56 PM
I love the showers at the Y. I'd suggest just taking a robe or towel, whatever makes you comfy, change into that after your workout, shower (hang the robe or towel over the door or bar in the corner...it will still be good enough to use for cover when you get out...take and extra if you need to for drying), then you can go back to the stall to change into your clean clothes. Another idea would be a swimsuit or top and running shorts...something you can slip off in the shower, then put back on just to get to/from your changing area. I'd also drop a suggestion in the box there, that they set up a couple of dressing rooms, or add towel hooks or something!


02-23-2008, 07:23 PM
My Y has a large private changing area for anyone to use - it's expecially convenient for people who are in wheelchairs because it gives them (and their aide) more room, as well as more privacy.

I shower after my Y class - after I take off my top, I wrap a towel around me, then take off my bottom clothes. There's a towel hook right next to the shower stall. I dry myself in the stall, then wrap the towel around me to get back to my locker. I dress my bottom half, then remove the towel to dress my top half.

I, too, don't like parading around naked - but at the Y, there are women of ALL shapes and sizes. Believe me, no one is paying you any attention - it's our OWN minds that are giving us wrong messages.

02-23-2008, 10:58 PM
I pay a little bit more for my gym fee just for that reason. I never have liked changing in front of others but I do need a gym where I can go and take a shower before going on to work. There are three locations of the gym - the old location has showers that are very deep so you can put your clothes on a chair and they will not get wet - love it! The new location was recently purchased and the showers are HORRIBLE...the walls go about to my neck and they are simply stalls. I did talk to the manager about this and was told it is one of the first thing they will change - I appreciated when she said, "What were they thinking?!"

I, too, am uncomfortable when others are walking around half-naked. If I go at a certain time of the day there is one lady - she is at least 50 and in fabulous shape - who will get ready in only her underwear. She is there regularly at the same time so I avoid that time...

Good luck, to you, though. I hope you are in a situation where you don't have to take a shower after your workout. If you go from work can you change at work before you go?