Fat Bottom challenge
Look out Te Awamutu — Fat Bottomed Girls will be walking your streets this weekend.
Following on from the success of the Cambridge walking group they are now extending the ‘Urban Challenge Walk, Talk, Support’ concept to Te Awamutu.
Fat Bottomed Girls (or FBG) came from an initiative from Cambridge woman Robyn Chappell after she tried on a pair of trousers thinking they would be far too big for her.
Holding them up Robyn was convinced she had been sent the wrong size, but looking in the mirror at the snug fit, her worst fears were revealed.
While determined to do something about her expanding girth, she disliked the idea of working out at a gymnasium.
“I felt like I would be judged by all the skinny, fit looking people there.”
She then posted her plight on Facebook to see if anyone felt the same. She was overwhelmed by stories of women who had similar fears.
Organising a meeting where some ground rules were established, the flabalicious group of ‘Fat Bottomed Girls’ was formed.
But Robyn, not content with just a walking group, wanted to set a challenge that would keep the girls interested and motivated, and so the Urban Challenge was created — walking both sides of every street in Cambridge.
“Women signed up and we kept in touch via Facebook,” says Robyn.
“Team leaders would notify other members of the section they were walking, time, and route. Other members would respond and they would meet and go for a walk.”
Some of their rules include no children on the walks, no negativity and no judgment.
“These rules are still in place today which I believe gives us our strength, while the structure of the mapped walks keep us focused and on task,” says Robyn.
“Groups or teams range from 6-26 dependent on the day, time and availability of people. We all encourage each other and there is such a great vibe and camaraderie out walking, and a sense of belonging while staying connected on our Facebook page.”
This year the Fat Bottomed Girls, complete with their purple T-shirts, are easily identified as they walk the streets. Fat Bottomed Dogs are permitted to walk with the girls and look equally dashing in their purple bandannas.
And this year the girls have opened their group up to the men, with the group now known as Fat Bottomed Girls & Guys.
In addition, to add interest and more opportunities to get active, they are offering easy bike rides (Fat Bottoms on Bikes), small hikes (Fat Bottoms go Bush) and, for the parents and caregivers of babies, Fat Bottoms with Bubs.
Robyn says there are benefits to being a Fat Bottomed Girl or Guy.
“They get genuine support for what they are doing. They get a chance to network and socialise with others, and they get to see their town — every street, road, avenue and terrace.
“But most of all they get off the couch, away from their computers or responsibilities and outside in the fresh air. The results have been incredible,” she says.
To give members of the public a taste of what the walking group is all about, they are organising a walk in Te Awamutu this Sunday, June 3. Anyone is welcome to join them on this walk. The FBG group will be encouraging women and men to sign up for the Te Awamutu Urban Challenge, which they plan to begin mid June.
To take part in this first Te Awamutu Urban Challenge walk, meet near the Rose Gardens at 9.30am and look for the purple FBG shirts. The walk will be postponed if it is raining heavily.
FAT Bottomed Girls Cambridge are bringing their innovative ‘Urban Challenge Walk, Talk, Support’ concept to Te Awamutu.