Biggest Loser? Who’s the Winner?

LabXtv Urban Workout Malmo Sweden
October 10, 2013
The Oxygen Mask of Life
October 29, 2013

Biggest Loser? Who’s the Winner?

Biggest Loser

Last night I tuned in to the 15th season opener of The Biggest Loser. I have to admit that my wife and I have watched almost every season. I have a love/hate relationship with the show. First off the name reminds me of high school where if you were the biggest loser you wouldn’t be rewarded with $500,000 but would more likely receive an atomic wedgie! The idea is sweet. Bring in a few tons of overweight people, 3 screaming trainers, plop them all on a ranch where you can control their diet and exercise regime and then……… vote them off because they didn’t lose enough weight! This is where I cringe. Because it is a TV reality competition for money, the over riding issues of the contestants can sometimes be over looked and it all comes down to the scale. I always tell my clients to throw out the scale, change your diet and train because you feel better and the weight will fall off as a byproduct. When you make it all about the scale 1 of 2 things happens. You make the weight you were hoping to reach then you celebrate by taking your foot off the pedal and eat a box of Girl Guide Cookies or you don’t meet your goal weight and you are so depressed you give up and eat a box of Girl Guide Cookies. Either way a little girl gets her cookie badge! What do you do with an obese client? Follow the Biggest Loser Crossfit Bootcamp system? Take last night as an example. You have a 460lb man who hasn’t exercised in 15 years and has no gym experience; pushing sleds, swinging kettle bells, power snatches, medball slams, and pulling chains in between sprint intervals on the treadmill. Trainers! Is this how you would start your first session if this man walked into your gym? Wouldn’t you screen them first, see what limitations are holding them back, teach them basic lifting technique to ensure they don’t get injured? Gradually build up the intensity of your workouts as they acclimatize to their environment and slowly increase the complexity of exercise once they are competent in their basic lifts. Maybe gradually change their diet and hydration levels by allowing them to gradually incorporate better eating and drinking habits into their routine? Noooooo! Just wave a ½ million dollars in front of them and offer a Biggest Loser banded puke bucket when they need to bonk! I understand good television. This is why I tune in and watch the 30 minute weigh in with a commercial break before each weight is revealed. My wife loves to see me yelling at the TV and vowing to turn it off if one of the trainers makes another obese person cry because they had a life moment that led them to cupcakes instead of dealing with the issue. Don’t get me wrong, I think it is amazing to watch people change their lives and love the moments where the contestants are faced with the decision to quit the show or pull themselves together and get on with it. This is why we watch sports. See people push themselves past their comfort zone and come out triumphant. So another year of Biggest Loser it will be. More changed lives, more shin splints, more reversed diabetes, more Jared Subway commercials and Jenny O clips mixed into the diet sections of the show. More people inspired at home to get up off the couch and start! Start what? Just start!!!! Coach Glass

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