Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Biggest Loser Review by a Certified Personal Trainer

NBC's Biggest Loser sounds like a great idea.  Take some obese individuals, help them lose weight, inspire others...Great concept.  To be honest, I never watched the show until recently and I have to say I'm concerned with the message it is sending and how the whole program is viewed by the general population.

First of all, the contestants work out for 5 to 6 hours per day - Yes, 5 to 6 HOURS.  That's insane!  Pro athletes...sure...but obese individuals with no exercise experience going from zero to 6 hours per day....I'm shocked there aren't dozens of injuries.  Also - I'm not sure the show makes it clear how long the workouts actually are.  The average person - even a stay at home parent - doesn't have 6 hours to spend working out.  It's just unrealisitc.

Secondly, the obsession with weight loss rather than body changes or "body composition".  Read any book, take any certification course and you'll learn that 1-2 lbs per week is a healthy amount of weight loss.  Any more than this and you are likely losing water or muscle or both.  Losing 20 lbs from one week to the next just isn't healthy and it's not a good example for viewers at home.  Again, just unrealistic in what viewers at home can expect to achieve.

I watched last night, and a woman had lost 2 lbs since the last weight in.  The perfect amount to lose.  She seemed so sad that it was only 2 lbs.  This was understandable as people tend to place higher expectations on themselves.  What really ticked me off, was how disappointed the trainers were.  These are the people that are supposed to know this stuff and be supportive no matter what!  One guy lost several pounds since the last weigh in and the trainer - I think it was Jillian, seemed devastated and acted like the guy wasn't trying.

All in all - I have to say I'm a big fan of fitness, but not NBC's The Biggest Loser.

Weight loss is going to take awhile.  People don't gain 20, 30 or even a 100 lbs overnight so there is ZERO reason to think it's going to come off that fast.  1-2 lbs per week is a good, safe, achievable goal.  Exercise 5 days a week - 2 days of strength training and 3 days of cardio is a  great way to start and get results.  For more info on losing weight safely - contact me and I'll be happy to give you a free workout.

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