A CrossFit trainer is being accused of treating his female clients like “pieces of meat” after posting a video of their backsides to Instagram.
Tom Tomlo, owner of Blue Ridge Crossfit in North Carolina, videotaped three women during a morning workout strength training session and shared it to the Blue Ridge Crossfit Instagram page this past Friday. Not only were the women bent over with their backsides in the air, but Tomlo placed cheeky peach and smiley-face emojis over the video and included captions such as “humpday” and “dayum.”
One woman took a screenshot of the video (which has since been removed) and shared it with the Blue Ridge Crossfit Facebook page (as of publish date either deleted or set to private). “This is not OK,” she captioned it.
This prompted Tomlo to respond with an expletive-filled rant.
“Hello guys, this is Tom. Going to be very clear and direct here so pay close attention. It has been brought to my attention that some people chose to get butt hurt today and make a public post in this group also some other bull—- in private,” he wrote.
“You must have lost your f—-ng mind if for one moment you think this is a platform or community for you to create some bulls– like that. No one in this establishment has the green light on that. I do not play those games and we do not acknowledge that type of petty, feeble minded garbage.”
“If there is something you disagree with so tremendously you feel the urge to make it public or choose to be offended etc. you have two choices, one set a meeting to discuss with myself or find a place that is a better fit for you. Creating some sort of delusional and ignorant drama is not your option here. I’ll tell you what you can do. Quit,” he said, before suggesting they write “a negative, emotional irrational review” for Blue Ridge and “tell your three friends how horrible your experience was and find a place that is accepting of degenerates …”
He ends with a multiple choice poll, asking whether the reader was smiling, did they find it “helpful” or are they “fuming mad and miserable.”
His response went viral and didn’t sit well with the public. As ABC13 reported, some members took his suggestion and quit — and the business now rates 1.7 out of 5 on Facebook. In an interview, Tomlo said it was a misunderstanding.
“I can’t control the way this is being portrayed, and I’m regretful for it. Someone took offence to it. They took a picture of it and put it in a way, I can see how it would be misunderstood,” he told ABC13. “We do pictures of guys’ butts around here, we have an informal loving family and it’s not a negative thing,” he said. “We were having fun. We were videoing, talking about booties that day.”
Amanda Turlington was one of the women featured in the controversial video. In an interview with WLOS ABC13 she made it clear that she doesn’t come to the gym “to be sexualized.”
“We come to the gym to work out and to be surrounded by people that we care about and that care about our success. I don’t come to the gym to be sexualized. I don’t come to the gym to have my body on display,” she said.
“You are taking a strong athlete and demeaning her to a piece of meat, and that is something I’ll never be OK with.”