Yeah, I’m the one in the YMCA Women’s Locker Room with a bra over my swim suit…

Embarrassment in the Women’s Locker Room…

I’m training for a 70.3 ~ often called a Half Ironman.

The number 70.3 is the total miles of this Swim-Bike-Run challenge: 1.2 mile Swim + 56 mile Bike + 13.1 mile Run = 70.3 total miles.

Preparing for this challenge requires training; well, it does for me.

SO, I’ve been swimming laps at my local YMCA…


I’ve set up my bike on an indoor trainer in order to cycle indoors during this wild winter of 2014 in New England, but I’m just itchin’ to get outdoors…


And I’ve been running, mostly outside – weather conditions and all, because I love the discoveries of each day, each run…


I’m kind of a homebody girl when it comes to training.

But swimming?

Can’t do that at home; unless I do it in my bathtub, and that ain’t gonna work.

So I head to the Y.


I really, really love the Y.

But I don’t really, really love the culture of the locker room.

Women walk around totally naked. Woman converse totally naked, like they’re standing at the school bus stop picking up their kids. Women parts are a-hangin’ out all over the place.

Don’t judge me, though.

I have no problem with this. I have no problem with nudity. I have no problem with women’s bodies. I honor women’s bodies.

Heck, I have one of these.

I have no problem with women entirely comfortable with nudity in a locker room, chatting over bare breasts and belly buttons and buttocks about the opera, local politics, gardening and the best veal parmigiana in Rhode Island.

I’m just not there, at that place where I can do that.

Nor will I ever be, I guess.

I’m not a prude. I’m not overly modest. I’m not demure, and Lord knows I’m not proper.

I’m just that gal who changes in the dressing room behind the curtain; like the Wizard of Oz, except in a bathing suit at the YMCA.

Oh, how I wish I could raise my arms in exposed victory, boldly announcing to the female masses in that tiled underbelly, “Hey, here I am, ladies. Naked. Nude. Bare. Unadorned. Uncovered… um, but powerless, small, stark, vulnerable and even a bit silly for feeling this way.”

How I wish I could commune with the nudist colonists. How I wish I could bare it all.

But I just can’t go there.

So today, I had an idea.

I would put my swim suit on at home. Under my clothing.

Then revel in the public undress. Become one with my locker room peeps.

Except that I’d never be naked. Off come the clothes and on goes the conversation… with me in my swim suit all oh, this old thing that happens to be on my body rather than in my bag?


PROBLEM: I was in quite the rush at home. Put on my swim suit. Gathered a bunch of stuff to carry downstairs. Needed to let the dogs out. Rush, rush.

And oh, yeah… needed a sports bra. Got one. Didn’t want to get it mixed up in all my other stuff and forget it. Slipped it over my swim suit – temporarily, of course. Rush, rush.

Let the dogs out. Picked through the dryer for clean clothing. Put clothes on.


Over the swim suit.

With no memory of it… until I was standing with 3 partially but soon-to-be unclad women in the locker room at the Y and quite confidently slipped off all my clothes.

That’s when I caught sight of my bright blue sports bra on top of my very, very red swimsuit…



You can’t talk your way out of that. There is, simply, nothing to say.

I may as well have walked into the Y from my car, stark naked, as stand there with a sports bra over my swim suit.

But ya know what?

Those bare naked ladies were non-judgmental. They just kept on talking about the things bare naked ladies talk about in women’s locker rooms.

And me?

I just slipped off that bright blue sports bra like I meant it, and slithered from the locker room into the pool area.

So, if you’re ever looking for me in the women’s locker room at the Y, I’ll be the Wizardess of Oz behind the curtain of the dressing room.



















About Audrey

Audrey McClelland has been a digital influencer since 2005. She’s a mom of 5 and shares tips on her three favorite things: parenting, fashion and beauty. She’s also a Contemporary Romance Author.

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  1. 3.26.14
    Cheryl P said:

    I would be the one with the turtleneck UNDER my swimsuit…. You’re awesome as always.

  2. 3.26.14
    Dawn said:


  3. 3.30.14
    Beth said:

    HA! Hopefully the link shows up. I think you will enjoy this McSweeney’s

    I’m better about the locker room, deffo not one of the gals that just whip off their top and bra and BOOM boobies, complete with naked chit chat…

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