Michelle says she never lacks attention from men, and that they find her five-foot-four, size 14 frame sexy.

“Men have always said to me, ‘You’re not fat, you’re p-h-a-t,’” she says.

As a fitness instructor, she hopes to encourage African-American women to focus on exercise as a key to health, rather than using self-hatred to motivate weight loss. The women in her classes naturally agree with her inclination – and none of them are seeking to be supermodel thin.

“I’m a full-figured woman who would run circles around the average person, and I know it,” Michelle says. “I kind of think it’s my secret weapon.”

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