I like the Biggest Loser.
There, I said it. Although the trainer in me rebels against how unrealistic it is since we can’t all live on ranches with personal trainers at our beck and call every day, I do appreciate the difficulties, both physical and mental, that the participants have to overcome, the inspiration that comes from it and, let’s face it, the entertainment value. [Side note: I could do with out the beeping scale. I really, really could.]
Because the dramatically quick weight loss that we see on the screen is so impossible to achieve in real life I’ve been glad to see the show going back and revisiting former contestants who have regained the weight. I feel truly sad for these people but it is an unfortunate reality that after the ranch, unless you make changes in your own life for yourself, nothing is going to change. And because the ranch lifestyle is so drastic, when you return home and can’t make the same drastic changes, and don’t live with a group of people competing to lose weight to win prizes, old habits are going to creep right on in.
In a previous post I talked about moderation and modification. The Biggest Loser has nothing to do with moderation. There is very little gray area. It’s either/or, not sometimes/maybe. It certainly modifies people’s lives but many of those modifications are unsustainable or even unattainable in the real world. Does that mean weight loss can’t be achieved? No. It means realistic habit changes are necessary.
One good thing about the Biggest Loser is that they do give you tips about making those changes. They also show people working out really hard. Really, really hard. This is the best part of the show and should be used as inspiration (I totally steal exercises from Bob and Jillian to torture my clients with). If you go to the gym and aren’t challenging yourself to get faster, stronger, and for goodness sakes sweatier, you aren’t going to achieve the results you want. Change is hard but if you want to lose big you have to make some of those changes.