2015-12-15: Hi! You're probably here because you did a Google search for 'plus sized horseback riders' or you saw my content quoted elsewhere. There are a couple of things I'd like you to know.

I am still here! But I am living away from my horses and not riding often. I could tell you a lie and say that I am, but I have always endeavored to give you the truth here. As a result, I'm not feeling terribly motivated to write blog posts and I feel out of touch with the community.

I'd love for you to stay a while and look back through the archives. Visit the links listed below. We still have an active forum community and I post on the Facebook page from time to time.

I have tentative plans to try to get more involved in the horse world in 2016, and I will absolutely share whatever that adventure becomes with you, so keep checking back!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Lose Weight Or Don't Lose Weight - But Live Your Life Anyways!

Right now, I want to address all of you who used to love riding but have put on weight and don't feel like you can't possibly ride a horse anymore. Pssst. I have a big secret. You CAN.

At my heaviest, I weighed in around 325lbs. Never once, for a minute, did I let myself think it would be okay for me to stop doing something that I loved. I had a great, patient, quiet mare at the time, and she really helped me. Angel was around 15.3hh, 1300lbs in pasture condition, and she was green as grass, but she turned out to be exactly what I needed.

At the time, I didn't think too much about being a plus sized rider and the implications surrounding it or any of that sort of thing - I just wanted to ride. And I did. And weight came off.

I don't want this blog necessarily to be all about losing weight and whatnot - because some people are happy in the skin they are in and that is perfectly fine. This blog isn't about losing weight, but I have found that with regular horseback riding and eating healthy foods because I want to, I have begun to lose - this blog is mostly about finding a way to do what you love to do without being made to feel negligent or guilty about it. Nobody knows your life and nobody knows your situation as intimately as you do. Nobody here on this blog is here to judge or tell you that you can't - this blog is to tell you to enjoy life anyways, even if people are telling you that you can't!

It is so important to continue doing the things that you love. In the case of horses, it gives you inspiration for the future, time outdoors, peace of mind, and goals. You read, see, and hear a lot of negativity about what fat people can or can't do. There are even people out there who don't understand why people can "let themselves get fat" and worse, some who are downright discriminatory. The best revenge? Living well, and doing things despite the negativity. So do it! Go out there and ride your horse. Go out and make yourself happy, because you're the only one who really can. You'll feel good.

I am so interested in the tales of plus sized riders - where they are in their lives, how they do things, and supporting them - so if you are, stand up and be counted in my comments - tell me how you're living well and doing it despite the odds. And if you need a little help? Tell me there, too. I'm here for you. :)


  1. I like your blog Beeze-I get the OMG-your not fat-you're you friends too!! I know I'm fat and I will never be thin, but I strive to be healthy! I have spent the better part of this year trying to convince a doctor that I feel like crap & am gaining weight due to health issues rather than "I am fat & that's why I feel bad idea!"

    Finally got some bloodwork done & I am insulin resistant! New diet & meds and I have lost 25 lbs since September & I am feeling much better! Yay

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  2. I'm LIKING your blog! (Followed link her from FiSH. I just lurk there. Too scary.)
    I'm 270 lbs, recent re-rider, going on 40 in a few years...Keep it up I'm going check in on you and hope it inspires me in my own horse journey.
    And BTW JLB6736, I've found a lot of doctors won't get beyond the "weight is the issue" diagnosis! VERY annoying!
    Gorgeous picture by the way, you AND the horse.

  3. I am very fortunate to have a doctor that I "grew up with" at horse shows. She is "not concerned" about my weight as the many typical health issues surrounding being my size are not present, and she very much encourages me to ride because she knows it is a way for me to get out and get fit. She is also very insistent on finding out the reasoning behind things she feels are symptoms of greater problems - like weight - if I went to her complaining that I had piled on weight suddenly (which I haven't, I have always been a fat girl!), she would investigate the WHY and run blood panels rather than just saying "Well, you have to lose weight."

  4. Just discovered your blog... I'm a 42yr old re-rider who just got her own horse. My fat mare is a 15.1hh TWH that is built like a tank! We're gonna go far together! :)

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  6. Hey! I'm a 39 y/o big-girl rider and love your blog. Just bought an arabian gelding with thick cannon bones - we'll be out on that road before you know it! Everybody says we can't because we're "fat" or "big", but I say we can and "Just watch me!".

  7. Great blog. Want to encourage those reading here not to wait to loose the weight to start doing what you want. I've battled my weight my entire life, putting off doing what I want until"I loose the weight" wasted a lot of time. I ride anyway...so some things bounce and keep on bouncing...I just buy a better bra and keep with it. lol Renee

  8. You have been so very inspirational to me (also thank you to Renee). I am very small on top but double enormous on the bottom and have put off doing everything until I could get thinner. My daughter is now 7 years old and does all the things I use to enjoy, ice skating, tennis, horse riding (she is obsessed with it), swimming and I really want to join her. A few months ago I decided to play tennis. And thanks to coming back to your blog again and again finally gained the courage to sign up for riding lessons again. I begin next week. Thank you so much!! TZ

  9. I'm 215 lbs, just had my first child 7 months ago and am still losing the weight. I've only riden a horse twice in my life, and am starting lessons the end of this month. I have a horse (shes not exactly mine) who I go visit nearly every day. I want us to be best friends, but I don't know how. I haven't riden her yet, I need a few lessons first. Am I a plus size rider? I don't know, sometimes I think I am bigger than I am, and sometimes I think I'm skinnier than I am...

  10. Hi
    I'm a 16 year old girl and of course I'm overweight :/ I'm +/- 248 lbs... I've had a hard life and I know some choices I made were wrong. But I see a dietetician and a psychologist and also a doctor and they help me in my project to loose weight..
    I've asked myself so much time If I didn't hurt the horse when I ride her but my teacher told me it's not a problem, the horse is strong and you're a good rider... I ride horses since I'm 5 years old and I want to continue to do it my wholo life... My dream is one day to weight 154 lbs and I think that horse are gonna help me to do it...

    from Belgium (sorry for mistakes)

  11. I love this blog! You are amazing. When I saw "The beginning is a Good Place to Begin" description of yourself I thought jeez thats me! 5 ft 11 in about 290lb. I have been riding since I was about 8 years old. I was always chubby, but when I turned 22 my trainer told me that she could no longer put me on her horses in good conscious. I was about 250 lb then and a very balanced, experienced rider. I had been giving lessons to my trainer's beginning and intermediate students for heavens sake. It killed me to know that I was going to have to leave. She told me that I could stay to volunteer in order to be with the horses, but that there was going to be no further riding till I lost 50lb. I went to a few of the local stables by my house and looked into leasing a horse of my own. Not only would no one consider leasing me their horse I was told that I could not take lessons either. It was a horrible and embarrassing and made me feel like I was some sort of a hideous monster. Now I am 27 I weigh 290 lb and have not been on a horse since I was 22. I am desperate to get back into riding. It is my only passion in life. Thank you for this blog! I hope that there are other girls and guys out there who get to ride even if they are overweight. I pray that one day i get the chance again too!

  12. Hi just came across this blog while reserching for some new gear, fuller fillies is fab for that.
    Have to say i am about 290lbs which here is about 21 stone and about 5 ft 2", and i am proud to say i am the funsized rider at our stables i ride an 11 year old 16.1 thoughbred gelding named Cristie and he is my baby, i rode back when i was 16 but hadnt been ona horse in 16 years i am now 30, and got back into it after my eldest son decided it was his thing, so now i ride 4 times a week and have just started retraining my boy for show jumping he hasnt done it in 5 years and i have never jumped so we are taking it one lesson at a time.

    I love this blog and for all those woman and men out there who think they cant just because they dont fit the sterotypical sizing of a rider, just go find somewhere where u can ride my instructer put me on a 15.6 cob to start with so never say never we can ride if we have a passion to, you just have to find the rigt place to do it.

  13. Okay, maybe it's not necessarily a secret intentionally being kept from you but definitely a little known concept that absolutely does affect your success in your muscle building efforts.

  14. Thank you for putting this blog together. What a smart girl you are!

  15. SO, im a 15 yr. old girl, who weighs about 262 lbs. sure im not the skinniest rider out there, but has it stopped me form riding? no! I used to ride this mare, and i was one of the only people who could control her! she likes to buck people off, and sure she bucked me off twice, but did that stop me from riding? no! i just got right back on and continued! i have been riding for almost 5 years, and i love it! every week, i put my heart into it, and i try my hardest! i now ride a 16.4 hand mare, who is amazing! she has such a smooth canter, and she is great! i love jumping her! i love riding, and even though im not the skinniest, i still find a horse i can ride, i still find a horse that suits me! i love riding and don't plan on stopping any time soon!

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  17. Omg I love your blog :D I am relatively young(16) but for my age I know I'm fat, not sugar coating it I know what I am and I'm not 100% happy with it but I know I will never be skinny, neither of my parents were stick thin so I just dont have the thin gene. I currently have a 16.2 thoroughbred on loan called sheridon who is my absolout baby, he isn't exactly thoroughbred shape anymore :L comming off the race track he spends some time in the fields mowing down what grass he can find haha! I'm glad to see people who are on the larger side that ride, I have many friends who ride but are all stick thin and I hate having to look at them in their jodphurs looking nice whilst I thunder along ^^' I feel ashamed to admit this but I feel that for people to understand what I mean they need to know how much I am. At the moment I weight around 168lbs :/ I'm not especially tall either being at 5ft 4 so I feel guilty even when I get on my big beasty 16.2 However i'm hoping that with this blog I'll feel less bad about myself and hopefully lose some weight too.
    (Realised there were some spelling errors and such)

  18. My god. SELFISH SELFISH SELFISH. That poor poor horse. Any GOOD trainer knows that carrying an overweight rider is bad for these horses. Keep on NOT thinking about the stress you're putting on these horses because YOU want to be happy.

    1. Any "Good" trainer knows enough about horse anatomy and physiology to not disgrace themselves with such ignorant comments:)But it's ok, I'm sure you just forgot that speaking or commenting without thinking has never been a good way to appear intelligent or worthy of respect.

  19. Plus size riders? What a joke. Your horse isn't fat.. only you are. Get the hell off it.. you're freakin' huge! This isn't about skiing you horrendous, vile person! (I'd like to call you much worse, and I might as well since I know you'll delete this, because you're SELFISH). This isn't about playing a sport, or climbing a mountain, this is sitting on the back of a living ANIMAL, and saying you'll be damned if you're going to stop doing it just because you can't stop eating dorito's, and ice cream, and refuse to exercise. You make the horse exercise with your tubby lard, excessively weighing body, and you want to justify the fact that it's okay to put the horse under that kind of stress, just because you could give a shit? I certainly hope you are losing weight, because based on your picture on that poor horse, you're a heartless bitch. That horse deserves a better owner. I only wish a sumo wrestler would jump on your back and ride you like a worthless playtoy. Bitch!

    1. You are a very ignorant and cruel person. How dare you judge people. You should research why some people are over weight. Not everyone just sits around eating dorito's.

  20. P.S. Since the commenter above me and myself (below) will get deleted, since you clearly only have positive comments on your page and the ones that aren't positive have obviously been deleted, since you're a fraud, and can't handle criticism, and are lazy and selfish (like most fatties who refuse to lose weight), I'd just like to add to the list of "comment has been removed by author"'s, just so people can see how damn phony you are. Your audience is nothing but sad fatties, like you. Good job, grab that snickers bar and pout about it!

  21. Anonymous - I have actually never had to remove a comment. I don't monitor this forum that way. Not once have I encouraged any of my readers to disregard the welfare of an animal in order to ride - I have encouraged them to find appropriately matched horses to ride. We're not talking about hours and hours of rigorous cross country here, either.

    I hope that someday you have a problem that can be explained away as easily as "refusing to stop eating doritos and ice cream". LOL

  22. Well I really don't give a shit what these people think that like to take time out of their oh so important lives to go on a forum just to down talk people who have done nothing to deserve it.
    Wow get a life people. Someone obviously was not loved much as a child.
    But ya know what? Just gunna let it slide off my back. You don't know anything.
    I love this page and am happy that it was made and am also a follower on facebook. Thanks for creating this !

  23. How easy to spew filth at a group of people as a lazy anonymous bitch on the internet. Come talk to me like that in person and I might mop the floor with your worthless ass. Course there's no way you would have the guts to say that to anyone in real life. Amanda has created a page to positively encourage people who live in a world full of craptastic people like you.

  24. I believe that humans have been made to do absolutely everything in the world. If a human has allowed themselves to get fat or thin enough to the extent that they can't do anything, that's downright rubbish. We humans have been made to work, and to be busy. That's why we were created in the first place: to work.
    I believe that people can do anything they set their minds to, it's more a mental power than a physical condition.
    "Eat healthy, exercise often, live happy," or i think, that is what it is, right???

  25. This blog is gross. Poor horses. this is why old horses have dips in there backs.

    1. And you believe baby's are delivered by storks and Santa Clause is the one putting coal in your stocking? Obviously you have never seen or ridden a horse so instead of hating people who find joy in them you should get over yourself and try it. You never know, maybe a horse can open up your narrow mind.

  26. I just stumbled upon this blog/Facebook. I want to thank Amanda? (I think) for taking the time to join together plus size riders. I have also read the negative comments. I have only pity for them as they must have a low self esteem. If it makes them feel better to bash people for doing what they love. I too am overweight, I have been very fortunate that I have not have to deal with prejudiced people. I look out for my horse first and foremost. Being overweight doesn't mean that you have to stop living and enjoying life. So WAY TO GO AND DON'T LET OTHER PEOPLES OPINION STOP YOU! ps dips in their backs is not from overweight riders.

  27. Your blogs are absolutley inspirational beyond belief. I am overweight and, as I see it, will always be. I ride at a barn where everyone is skinny and amazing riders. They all also eat whatever they want whenever they want. They all look great in high waisted riding pants with polos tucked in, as I do not. I am a low level eventer but thought my weight was holding me back. Every single eventer out there is skinny and fit, I starting feeling like I needed to lose weight to event well. After reading your blogs I started realizing that if I want to lose weight I should do it for myself, because I want to, not because I feel I have to. Everyone knows that I'm the fat one at the barn, but I don't care. I'm proud of who I am and I'm happy in my skin. I may not be rocking a skimpy bikini this summer but I am healthy and have gotten in shape due to my riding and my new horse. I can now say that I am happy with how I look, and I thank you for that. (:

  28. Hi There, I am in a bind and am in need of support! I used to ride, when i was younger, and much thinner. I am looking to get back into riding, but am hesitant, and worried, that my weight will make it impossible. Your story is inspiring. I have found a local barn that says they are ok with my weight, and have a few suitable horses. I'm hoping to get started soon, once i order and get some equipment. I'll need all the support I can get, because between my own self criticism, and the difficulty I'm anticipating, i'll need to be strong. thanks!!!! Kate

  29. I am a few pages in and WOW-- some of the comments are rather negative, aren't they? I really appreciate your replies to those posts, Amanda. Their own ignorance is their problem. :) I am really enjoying this blog!

  30. Hi there, have been looking for an inspirational blog for so long. I have just bought a horse with a very dear friend who, following the birth of her three children, has put on alot of weight. She is close to 300lbs now. Our horse is a gem, he is 17.2hh and v broad. My friend rode him out (her first time on a horse in 10 years) and felt awful when she came back because her balance was so different and off and she had massive problems getting on and off our horse. She is now saying she wants to lose weight before she gets back on. I have tried to explain that she should do this if she wants to but not to use it as an excuse, which I think is the case. She has had horses all her life and we bought him to enjoy together, get away from all our childrend and have fun. I know she wants to do this! I am, of course, happy to keep riding him until she feels better but right now, I just want to help make it easier for her. Has ANYONE got any tips on mounting/dismounting that they could offer and any help with balance? He is a truly gorgeous boy, so gentle and wouldn't hurt a fly, I just wish I could give her the confidence to try again!

    1. It can be very startling if you don't ride for a while to get back on... your body doesn't feel the way you remember it to have, if you have gained weight. I started taking lessons myself in February and couldn't get over how "floppy" I was... but it will come. It is awesome that your friend has someone so supportive and encouraging in their life. :) Please, tell her to read the blog! There is also a forum linked on the main page that is full of supportive plus sized riders - it motivates and encourages me every day!

  31. I've came across your blog a couple of years ago. As Someone who has always loved horse and rode when I was much younger. I've always been overweight and at 4'11/5'0 and 200 plus pounds. I know that riding is a great way to get into shape and to lose weight. Though I'm so afraid cause of my weigh I'm going to be turn away from riding at locals Stables and I don't have my own horse. I've read most of the post above the good ones and the Bad ones. I have to say the Bad ones made me really sad and to be honest MAD! People have no right to justified others cause of Sex, Face or even WEIGHT!

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