The Biggest Loser reality show has actually touched many hearts and motivate many overweight people to start exercising and changing diet plan. I have watched few seasons of the show. In addition to Apprentice, it is another reality TV show that really got me watch the entire 1-hour show without switching other channel. The format is similar to reality show of Survivor, which every week someone is voted out, but in The Biggest Loser, the contestants are not really putting others down. They are controlling their own diets and working out themselves with the trainers’ help and motivation. No one sabotage their effort to lose weight. In a way, they control their own fate.
Some people do not find the show interesting. Probably, unless you are into weight lost, adopting healthier lifestyle or body building, you will find it boring. For me, The Biggest Loser is quite real. Yes, nothing sexy (except Jillian Michael, some may say). No storyline. No plot to follow. No nice clothes. No romance. Only sweats and hard work. Of course, producer has edited all episodes, so, you do get a little dose of drama every now and then. Whenever a team lost a challenge, the team members often argued fiercely over who caused the loss or did not work hard enough. Also, they are constantly tempted by high-calorie foods. Contestants have to leave their comfortable place to be on the ranch. Phone calls back home are rewards. They have to stay with strangers and occasionally being yelled by the trainers to work their asses out. The coaches (Bob Harper and Jillian Michael) sometimes can be tough, but their intention is good.
It is indeed hard to believe when contestant’s photos are shown before and after the weight loss effort. I remembered seeing few participants, who went from barely being able to jog due to their size, into completely fit competitors in the last few episodes. As they continue to exercise, their stamina improved. Most of them have lost more than 100 pounds over the course of 2 months.
But, what is more important, contestants’ spirit became brighter and more cheerful. Most regained their confidence. For those who were able to stick with the strict diet and exercise regimen, they were “transformed” by shredding much pounds. Some of them are actually very good looking with their new frames. Their good looks have been hidden behind the fat. Even their family members or close friends could hardly believe what they saw.
Having said that, it is definitely not an easy path for every one in the show. All had to struggle. Some slipped back into their old eating habits. Some decided to give up the rigorous exercise routine. Some threw temper tantrums. Some cried.
Contestants talked about the reason why their weight gain become out of control. It might be caused by their emotional scars during their younger days. Some just simply liked eating, it is a plain food addiction. Some complained about hectic schedules in big city that made them fat. Each individual had to dig deep within themselves to find out the reasons. Yes, it is important to go all the way down to the root cause of the problem before the healing should begin. One thing which every contestant agreed is that he or she needed a complete lifestyle change.
People, who like the show, view it as an inspiration to start dieting or start exercising. I have seen one of my friend who actually cried watching one of the episodes. She is overweight and she told me that, “Those folks are really making big sacrifice. They came out from their comfort zone. They struggled to make better food choices.” I agree that The Biggest Loser is an incredible show. It gives hope to helpless obese people – if there is a will, there is a way.
However, critics of the show mentioned that the show is inapplicable to every layman as no one, especially working adult, has time to exercise 6 hours a day. Yes, if you remember my earlier article (The Truth Behind “The Biggest Loser Reality Show” Which Has Never Been Told) which mentioned that after the show, Ryan Benson (first season winner) has regained 32 pounds in 5 days simply by drinking water. Some contestants from past seasons have gained much weight and they are back to square one after the show ended.
But, the fact that those participants slipped back into old habits is what makes the show real. Don’t you think so?
Some still maintain their better body shape or even shed more pounds after they left the show. Let’s not deny the fact they have learned something. They adopt a more normal routine that help them to maintain a more sustainable healthy weight. What is more important is the attitude which they have develop during the show. It is the positive attitude that keeps them going strong.
A simple sentence from one of the contestants, “I want to be around to see my daughter get married.” His words are so powerful that they blow people away. Yes, when you are over 300 pounds, you are not thinking about how beautiful you want to be. It is about saving your life. It is about living past 50 years old. It is about being able to walk up a flight of stairs without having to take a rest.
For me, The Biggest Loser reality show has really served its earlier objective. Eat right and exercise regularly to be healthy and the weight will take care of itself. It has motivated many obese people to make the change.
Here are the collection of photos of each season winner (before and after photo):
Ryan Benson – Winner of Season 1
Matt Hoover – Winner of Season 2
Erik Chopin – Winner of Season 3
Bill Germanakos – Winner of Season 4
Ali Vincent – Winner of Season 5
Michelle Aguilar – Winner of Season 6
Helen Phillips – Winner of Season 7
By the way, I was told that NBC will be shooting Asian version of The Biggest Loser which will be hosted in Malaysia starting in July 2009. The production team has gone to Kuala Lumpur city to create the buzz. Several overweight participants stormed the busy street of Jalan Bukit Bintang and Jalan Sultan Ismail with motivational exercise led by fitness instructors. Here are few shots:
If you have what it takes, check out the audition site of Biggest Loser Asia.
Check out The Biggest Loser collections from Amazon.
Check out also Jillian Michaels’ workout DVD.
Category: Weight Loss
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