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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    Boulder
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    The Biggest Loser

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    So I have to admit, I do have one vice when it comes to t.v. (OK, two, but I'm not telling my other potentially embaressing t.v. show that I watch religiously for fear of ridicule!).

    Anyway, that is The Biggest Loser. The Boy and I watch it every week after our Tuesday climbing gym sessions. Last night, they did a triathlon as their challenge.

    My first reaction was 'it's backwards!', because they cycled then ran, then swam. But then I was super impressed. These are people that couldn't barely walk a few weeks ago and now they were cycling for 20km, running for 3km and the big kicker, which I found most impressive, was swimming for 1km. That's a solid amount! It was pretty cool, and I think the best part was at the end when everyone was like, "I would have never thought I could do a triathlon!"

    Its funny how people regard tris as such a huge accomplishment, and it reminds me that it is, even though alot of the time I end up shorting myself by saying, 'but I only did a sprint' or 'but it took me just under 2 hours!'

    Makes you realize that it really is a big thing, you know?

    K.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    2,609
    I watch it too. And Survivor. And The Amazing Race...

    I was blown away by them too. I was a bit upset about the format though. I was hoping that the woman who won the cycle and run would have been able to move on and keep her lead. By having each leg start from scratch, she lost her advantage. All that happened was the winner of the swim won - it wasn't a cumulative score. Details...

    For 3 days, I get to part of a thousand other journeys.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    northern california
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    1,460
    I love that show. I'm so proud for those folks. I really like the pictures of them after they've been tossed off of the show. All of them have kept up the healthy lifestyles.

    I just wish they wouldn't prolong the DRAMA of it all. It could be a 45 minute program that they drag out to 1 1/2 hours.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Mrs. KnottedYet
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    9,081
    Quote Originally Posted by Pedal Wench View Post
    I was hoping that the woman who won the cycle and run would have been able to move on and keep her lead. By having each leg start from scratch, she lost her advantage. All that happened was the winner of the swim won - it wasn't a cumulative score. Details...

    Yeah, I watch, I DVR all the episodes... the winner knew she is such a strong swimmer that if she could just get in the water she'd win. And she made a mile look like a lap, terrific form.

    But the woman who won the ride, standing and sprinting....if it had been cumulative who knows.

    And one day off negated all the weight they might have lost that week. That made an impression.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Boulder
    Posts
    930
    I agree, I hate the drama. I always root for the ones that are no-nonsense, that are there for a reason, and that don't play 'the game'. That's why I was happy that the vote went the way it did last night. (I can't believe I'm having a conversation about a tv show lol!)

    I like watching them work out, and realizing that there's all these things their body can do. I feel like I can kinda relate to that, you know, coming from a non-athletic background and becoming pretty athletic.

    But you know, I always get vaguely guilty feeling as I sit on the couch watching people losing weight. It seems kinda silly. Not that it should, because I work out alot and I am allowed to sit on a couch, but it's like, watching a tv show about people losing weight is so ironic in a way...

    K.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Mankato, MN
    Posts
    14
    I saw this episode too. I don't normally seek out to watch TBL, but someone on another Tri forum said that this episode was going to be on tonight. My first thought too was about how it was backwards and I also kinda thought it was weird how they stopped after every segment. No one looked sweaty with the just biked 20K look. But all in all, it is impressive that these people did it. I kinda wished they would have let everyone continue on though through the whole event just to have that experience of doing it. May motivate some to do it again.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    2,309
    I watched it, and shook my head... If you are going to do a triathlon- then DO A TRIATHLON!!!
    Did the producers even look into what a triathlon really is???
    Part of what makes a triathlon hard is going directly from swimming, to biking, and then to running. And putting the swimming last is actually dangerous. There is a reason why they put the swim first ya know!
    And yeah, I know there are some races out there that do it backwards, but I think they are crazy. Of course I'm looking at it from a liability standpoint.

    But yeah, my guess is Kae would have won it if she was allowed to go directly to the next event. She appeared to have a smoking lead.
    So as someone said- it became a swimming meet. And the thing with swimming- it's ALL about technique! It doesn't matter how thin or fit you are, if you don't have the technique you will be slow. The girl that won had a swimming background, and as you could see her technique was good.

    But yeah, I watch it. I don't think it's realistic, but I watch it. And I was happy that the vote finally went the right way!
    Personally I think mr. water loader needs to go. His scheming is ridiculous!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    2,716
    I think it was L-A-M-E that they had them start with the bike, then the run and finally the swim. Really lame that just because you won the bike and run, you couldn't win if you didn't win the swim portion.

    I also think there needed to be a rule that you COULD NOT hold onto the treadmill. I think that was totally cheating.

    At least Amy is gone. She was annoying. And someone made a good point about her being a size 5 only a few years before. That shows that there is hope for her being able to continue on at home.
    "Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather, to skid in broadside thoroughly used-up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: WOW WHAT A RIDE!!!!"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    81
    Quote Originally Posted by Running Mommy View Post
    But yeah, I watch it. I don't think it's realistic, but I watch it. And I was happy that the vote finally went the right way!
    Just curious Running Mommy... what part do you not find realistic? I ask because I know people who work on this show and I know that the contestants go through hell and highwater to lose that weight, and the people who design the show really root for them. It's one of the reasons I love that show.

    Is it just the fact they do nothing but spend their days working out? Because in that sense - it's not very realistic. Most of us would never have that kind of time. However, if looked at in kind of a "away at fat camp" way - what is not realistic?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    2,309
    Why don't I think it's realistic....

    Because I think of the average sedentary person out there that looks at that show and says "hey if I cut some calories and go to the gym, I can lose 5,8,TEN pounds in a week".
    And then they start WW or JC or something, and start going faithfully to the gym, but find it a struggle to lose 2 lbs in a week. So they get frustrated, say "it's too much work" and drop out.

    When realistically two pounds is what you should be losing if you are doing it in a healthy manner. And YES it IS a lot of work!!
    I can't see how it's healthy for them to be losing weight that fast. But of course that is my opinion, I'm not a doctor.

    To be more realistic I'd like to see them show EXACTLY what the contestants do as a daily workout regimen. I hear it's four hours a day, but I don't think I've ever seen it spelled out on the show.
    And like you said, four hours a day is not realistic for most people. Even during heavy Ironman training the most I can squeeze in is 1-2 hours in the morning and 1 in the evening, with one long 7+ hour day on the weekends.

    I'd also like to see how many calories they are eating, and more of exactly WHAT they are eating. - And not just the blatant product placements.
    They did show Kim talking to B about his food journal a couple of weeks ago, but I think they need to go more in depth about it.

    Of course you can go on the website and spend $$$ to join "the club", and then I guess you will get the keys to the system..

    Personally I would LOVE to go on the show. I love to train, and need to lose a good 20+ lbs. I struggle everyday to get weight off. Now THAT to me is realistic.
    Sure, find the fattest people in America, put them on a harsh diet and kill them in the gym everyday, and the weight will melt off.

    But the real challenge is to find all the people like me, who have been on one diet or another for what seems like forever. Get our bodies to finally shed the pounds. Now THAT would be a challenge!!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    2,716
    RM- you made a lot of really good points.

    A lady I "know" on Beginner Triathlete... talks about the same thing... that the show isn't realistic when it comes to a normal person losing weight. She herself has lost 100 pounds, but it took 4 years, not 3 months.

    In this day and age of, "I want it to happen RIGHT NOW", the show makes people think that they too could lose 20-30-50 pounds easily... with some gym work and eating a bit healthier. Which isn't realistic at all.

    What has always frustrated me about the show is the weigh-in portion. They spend very little time showing what these people eat, how the sleep, exactly how many hours they workout... and then for a 2-hour show, 45 minutes of it is all the weigh-in and the vote off.

    With that said, the show does encourage people to get off the couch (after the show?) and to workout. It shows people who think there is no hope... that there is hope... they just need to go out there and find some help and work hard. Unfortuantely, people who are overweight by 100-200 pounds... well, it's really hard for them to go find the help they need and to workout. But it does show them that it can be done.
    "Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather, to skid in broadside thoroughly used-up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: WOW WHAT A RIDE!!!!"

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    3,867
    As a fat person, I always looked at TBL like this: "Yeah, SURE they can lose 10 lbs in a week! They have nothing else to DO but workout and eat the food provided!"

    It's kind of like when Oprah says, "Cook like this and you'll be healthy." Well, SURE Oprah can say that! She has people who cook for her!

    In other words, neither of those things are the real world. I don't look at TBL as any other thing. The "reality" part comes from it not being scripted, and using real people as guinea pigs.

    One thing I DO get from that show is the transformation of *thought* that is clearly visible amongst the contestants. They are seriously obese, and they DO NOT BELIEVE they can ever be fit again or run a mile or lift weights or work out for hours in a day. By the time they get voted off, the way they think about themselves has obviously changed, because it was proved to them that they CAN do JUST what they CAN do, and that builds on itself and creates change in them. You can't change behavior without changing thought first. This show demonstrates that very clearly to me. That's the part I like.

    Karen

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
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    4,364
    While I do agree that they should be explicit about how they get their results. It can't be good for people to get discouraged because they are not seeing what happens on the show happen to themselves. I do think that what is good about the show is that is does show that these people, most of them severly obese, can lose a lot of weight only using diet and exercise. When you see that as compared to shows that chronical someone who does GI surgery to lose weight..... I think no matter how quickly they take the pounds off on Biggest Loser, it must be more healthy than surgically mangling your GI tract. There seem to be few people who do the show who fail to get motivated and lose at least some weight, no matter how long they spend on the show. I think that it shows great results and I like the message that a person can be in control of their own wellbeing.
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  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eden View Post
    When you see that as compared to shows that chronical someone who does GI surgery to lose weight..... I think no matter how quickly they take the pounds off on Biggest Loser, it must be more healthy than surgically mangling your GI tract.
    I so strongly agree with this. Discovery has a bunch of shows that follow overweight people, and they always say they've tried everything, and they always end up with a bypass. I think if all candidates were sent to the BL Campus for three months, where every calorie was monitored and daily exercise was required, the number of surgeries would dramatically drop. The number of teenagers doing the surgery is so alarming to me. By virtue of their age, there's no way they've tried everything! As I'm slowly discovering on our own weight-loss challenge, it takes TIME to lose even a few pounds. At 17 and 18 years old, they don't have enough time alive to have lost the weight.

    On the flip side, I realized how frustrated I was to have 'only' lost a pound last week, probably because I watch a show where people (women) regularly lose 5-7 lbs. a week.
    For 3 days, I get to part of a thousand other journeys.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    where the wind comes sweeping down the plain
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    5,251
    I've enjoyed reading all you ladies have said about the show. I agree with most all of it (like RM who said what about us who work out an hour or more a day and watch what we eat and can't lose .5 lb in a week).

    I just have to say that my DH and I laughed at each other the other night when we were watching the show because halfway through I turned to him and said "you wanna go get ice cream?" He said we're probably the only people in America who'd watch a show about weight loss and want to get ice cream. Ha!

    I'm impressed with how much weight they lose, and if I could work out like crazy for 4 hours a day I'd be one smokin' hot momma too- but one hour a day and some cutbacks will have to do to keep my weight sorta stable. Oh well. After seriously trying to diet for the last 2 months and only losing one pound- I'm thinking my body has found it's perfect weight (not perfect according to charts or graphs- but perfect for me). Such is life. I don't want to waste it chasing that "perfect body" that I had many years ago.
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