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Too Big to Lose Weight?!

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Imagine joining a gym, only to be told that you are too fat to use the equipment! Well, that's what happened to anOklahoma City mom-- in front of large crowd of (albeit thinner) gym-goers. We can't imagine anything more humiliating!

sandra ruiz

"The lady said I couldn't get on the machines because [I am] overweight," Sandra Ruiz told reporters from her local news affiliate. "Everybody was watching, seeing what was going on, and I got very sad because I'm so emotional about my weight right now."

Sandra admitted that she weighs about 385 pounds, and that she joined the gym to lose the weight she gained while pregnant with her now-5-month-old son. The gym, Mademoiselle Fitness Center, claims that before Sandra signed her contract, they warned her that she would not be able to use certain equipment due to her size and the weight limitations of the machines.

Citing Sandra's safety as the main concern, the gym offered up their aerobics room for a regime of walking instead. As Sandra stated, if she wanted to walk, she could do that outside -- for free.

The manager is allowing Sandra to break her contract and will waive the cancellation fee.

Moms, what do you think? Does the gym owe her an apology and a better action plan for losing weight?


next: Baby Gaga 'Telephone' Video Sufficiently Bizarre
31 comments so far | Post a comment now
dddiva June 4, 2010, 2:06 PM

While I think it is horrible they publicly humiliated her (they should have taken her aside) it is a safety hazard to get on equipment that is not designed to hold over a certain weight.

Would you put your toddler in an infant swing that obviously can’t hold them?

If they had let her get on it and it broke that a) would have been more embarrassing and b) would give her something to sue them for, be upset over, whatever.

IMO as she was told prior to joining that she couldn’t use some of the equipment and then she tried to use it anyways- in that respect, she brought the embarrassment on herself.

Rebecca June 4, 2010, 2:24 PM

This is so wrong on so many levels. They should not of accepted her money if she was not able to use all the equipment. Also they could have pulled her aside and told her away from everyone else. She already knew that she was big that was the reason she joined in the first place. She needs to get her money back and they need to pay for her to sign up elsewhere!!!

Anonymous June 4, 2010, 2:37 PM

They gave her her money back, and they shouldn’t have even done that. They told her upfront what equipment was off limits to her and she signed the contract. SHE is the one that broke the contract not this facility. If I signed up for a limited membership and used equipment that was restricted under my contract I would lose my privileges and not get my money back, this shouldn’t be any different just because she “got her feelings hurt” Boo-freaking-hoo.

black iris June 4, 2010, 2:42 PM

They should never have taken her money if all she could do was walk! And they certainly shouldn’t have let it get to the point where she was embarrassed.

The best exercise for overweight people is swimming. And if you can do it, look for a water aerobics class for seniors or people with health problems to join.

Anonymous June 4, 2010, 2:58 PM

Read it again. It doesn’t say ALL she could do was walk; it says that CERTAIN equipment was off-limits for her own safety, so the made special concessions to allow her to use the aerobics room for walkinh to give her a more equal experience. The went out of their way to try to accomodate her. It’s not their fault she’s to big for SOME equipment. It’s not their fault she agreed to the contract know ing it’s limitations and then got mad about it later. If they had just denied her service she would have been screaming to high heaven about it.

Danielle June 4, 2010, 6:14 PM

They should have gave her a personal trainer to work with her outside the gym. You don’t need equipment to loose weight. Mostly for building muscle in strength training.

kim June 5, 2010, 6:39 AM

She was given fair warning; therefore, she brought it on herself. Personal trainers cost money and they should not have given her one ~ she should have to pay for it.

anon June 5, 2010, 7:23 AM

Regardless of what she was told and who was in breach of contract there is no reason to humiliate another person. Causing a scene in front of other members will undoubtedly lead to embarrassment or strong emotions and therefore the gym should have dealt with in a more discrete manner.
Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity.

Monica June 5, 2010, 1:55 PM

@anon I agree. You could not have said it any better.

Anonymous June 5, 2010, 5:18 PM

We only have her side of the story. The employee that approached her could have been trying to be discrete, may be SHE argued caused the scene. People lie to sound better after the fact.

Haylee June 5, 2010, 7:25 PM

Honestly I think when she first went there to get a membership,they should have told her that in the begining. Thats not right for you to just humilate someone like that exspecially in front of everybody! I swear people need to think before they do something!

Anonymous June 6, 2010, 8:31 AM

They DID tell her and it was in her contract.

Carol June 7, 2010, 8:33 PM

I want to know exactly how this conversation went down. So far we only have one side of a story.

kevin June 9, 2010, 11:43 AM

She IS too heavy to work out in a gym.. why should the gym have to worry if she will drop dead in their place .. get out and walk, lose some weight and then go to the gym

katielll June 9, 2010, 11:44 AM

Why did she sign up for the gym if the restrictions on using the equipment was too much for her? I hugely DOUBT that they didn’t tell her that the equipment wasn’t built for someone her size.

Ryan Ewer June 9, 2010, 11:46 AM

I think that is she was going to break the equipment they have a right to not let her use the machine. I’m no expert but I think her weight most likely was an issue before she was pregnant, I don’t think women gain 185 pounds while pregnant. And as far as humiliation goes it doesn’t sound like the staff was rude or had any intention of embarrassing her, anyway that should be motivation to lose weight.

katielll June 9, 2010, 11:48 AM

And one other thing - if she got injured, you can be guaranteed she’d sue cause they never told her she was too fat to use the equipment!

John Chase June 9, 2010, 11:52 AM

How can not only a gym exist but buy equipment from a manufacturer for it’s facilities that has weight restrictions?????? I have been 250-300 lbs for 15 years and the recreational facility I go to has people 400+ lbs working out form the obeses/morbidly-obese to giant body builders and strength trainers. I am a man and I feel for this woman. Disgusting…

El pzlet June 9, 2010, 11:56 AM

Since obesity is a life choice it shouldn’t be treated the same as religion, race, ethnicity, ect. Any business has the right to protect its machinery from any kind of danger. Although the gym should have explained thoroughly the weight restrictions, they are justified.
P.S. I had a slightly overweight friend break my inverter, that’s injustice.

Beau June 9, 2010, 11:58 AM

Unfortunately, fitness clubs are really a scam. This is well known to those who are avid into working out and the so called gym groups…I work for a nationwide fitness chain and they will do anything to get you to sign on the dotted line and get your money. They will promise you the world and that you will have experienced trainers at your disposal. Wrong. The majority if all of the employees that are manning the floor of the gym are just hourly employees and are paid by commission if they sign someone up for personal training. It is the customers word against the gyms word as to what was told. I really think she was not told about the safety or the weight limit as most of the equipment has major large weight limits because after all it is commercial and designed for such people.
I have trained people her size and not had a problem. This is just a situation that was embarrassing and wrong


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