"We're all different, but our access to an active lifestyle shouldn't be."

By Faith Brar
November 27, 2017
Anna Victoria Has a Message for Anyone Who Says They "Prefer" Her Body to Look a Certain Way

Plus-size fashion blogger Anna O'Brien recently took to Instagram to announce that she'll be starring in a campaign for BCG Plus, the plus-size line for the activewear brand Academy Sports and Outdoors.

"I wanted to share a photo that looks amazing but doesn't follow the rules of how an active body is usually photographed," she wrote alongside a photo of herself decked out in the brand's clothing. "This isn't a 'technically' flattering angle or even a flattering pose," she continued. "What I hope you see in this photo is happiness, joy and the body that supports those emotions unconditionally."

For the most part, her post garnered positive attention and hundreds of people commented to show their support. But as Yahoo! reported, one Instagram user decided to leave a nasty comment in an attempt to crush Anna's pride. "This is disgusting you are making being fat a good thing," the comment read. "People should be ashamed of being fat, not proud."

Thankfully, Academy Sports and Outdoors refused to let the body-shaming message slide.

"Hi James," they responded. "At Academy, we truly believe every woman should have the same opportunity to enjoy sports and the outdoors. As a result, we will continue to represent a wide range of body types. We're all different, but our access to an active lifestyle shouldn't be." (Related: Katie Willcox Wants You to Know You're So Much More Than What You See In the Mirror)

Unfortunately, the brand's support alone wasn't enough. Anna herself had to take on another troll who said that she "needs more movement and less eating." Ugh.

Her response: "I wanted to let you know that comments like this don't help people be more active. If anything, they make people fear judgment and opinions when working out. If you genuinely want to encourage a plus-size person to be more active, try cheering them on more and discussing your uncomfortableness with their body less."

While it's disappointing that women still need to defend themselves against body-shaming, it's great to see Anna and the Academy join forces and take a powerful stand against trolls. In the process, they've reminded everyone that fitness doesn't come packaged in a particular shape or size and that women have the right to wear whatever they want without feeling like they will be judged or shamed.