While for most of us, the idea of a fat camp is something we only heard about in movies and on television, for others, it was a very real part of their childhood. And while some struggle to share their stories, one TikTok user is using the app to share her truth.
Meet Hannah, a 28-year-old woman living in North Carolina who spends her 9-5 working as an HR consultant. Like so many millennials, Hannah uses TikTok casually - until one day, one of her posts absolutely blew up, taking her from recreational social media user to viral star. She shared a story of her experience at the now-closed Wellspring Adventure Camp in Haywood County in her home state of North Carolina. At the age of 15 (back in 2009), she spent 10 weeks at the weight-loss camp. But unlike most of the narratives we see in media, Hannah went by choice. "I struggled with my weight at an early age... and desperately wanted to fit in with my peers," the 28-year-old shared. "Based on the way they advertised the scientific validity of the camp's weight-loss methods, we thought it would be extremely effective." But while she saw short-term gains, the long-term impact left a mark on the teenager.
"It unfortunately ingrained unhealthy eating habits in me for the years to follow, which, based on some other people who went to a weight-loss camp in their teens who have commented on my TikTok, seems to be very true for many of us." The camp used a bunch of methods, from tracking BMI to food journals and pedometers. But what was perhaps the hardest for Hannah to reconcile with was the strict diet and the competitive nature of the weigh-ins. And while some unhealthy habits and attitudes were formed during that summer, Hannah can at least look back and remember the friendships she formed fondly. "Having people who could relate to that, and understand that, and just bond over it was really great," she explained.
@hannahalysee Pt 2! #fyp #AerieREAL #foryou #fatcamp #weightlossstories #storytime ♬ Wii - Mii Channel - Super Guitar Bros
If you want to learn more about Hannah's journey we recommend checking out her popular TikTok account. And as always, check back soon for more honest influencers!