The Biggest Loser is my favorite tv show. Even Hulu knows it. So of course I was shocked when I heard about the finale(and watched it today). A lot of my friends were talking about it on facebook and I chimed in. I thought it was really interesting to hear Jillian’s take on it. First off let me say that I am not mad at Rachel(I am happy that she won, but thought it would have been cool if she and Tumi could have both won the big prize). The Biggest Loser is an inspirational weight loss competition. I love the trainers and I love to see the transformation of the participants. It also provides motivation to those who watch it. There are also tons of people who hate it(and everything it represents).
What made Rachel’s transformation so drastic(because we weren’t there live) was the fact that while all of the other contestants still had that extra skin, she had managed to lose most of that. Her face had changed dramatically(as did the other guy’s). This is what happens when people lose a lot of weight(even my face looks different when I lose weight). My goal is being my fittest self, not my unhealthiest(Rachel was fifteen pounds underweight). I would rather have the body of an Olympian than of a model.
When the contestants go home, we don’t get to see their routine or how they manage to maintain(or continue to lose). In weight loss you are either losing or trying to maintain your weight. I feel that if we had seen this(or had been given an idea), maybe we would not have been so shocked by the finale.
Disordered eating is a real thing in the world(especially America). My food weakness is chocolate(and ice cream, chocolate ice cream is a bonus). Ice cream has probably been my thing since I was four years old and managed to jimmy into the freezer and eat a ton of ice cream. I know you are probably saying “You call yourself a vegan and you eat ice cream). Sadly yes. I am working on it. My point is we all have something that we are dealing with that we would like to improve.
Disordered eating occurs when a person goes to some extreme regarding food. When I was in middle school my friends were anorexic and bulimic and I decided to join them(even though we had no reason to). I was so active in school that I really didn’t have to worry(but the pressure to be thin is real and starts young). Fast forward to my adult years where I treated food as my comfort. I ate and ate and rarely worked out(or worked out and ate my calories back). I joined a few diet challenges but always failed. I just couldn’t get it together.
The only reason why I even changed my eating habits is because in 2010 after I ran my first half marathon is because I realized that I over ate as and used my training as an excuse. So I started tracking my calories. Tracking calories is time consuming at first(but it helps and it is worth it). I also gave up soda. When I was a kid(until I was 16) I only drank Coke and then I was encouraged to drink Diet Coke and boy I sure did love it. Until I realized it did not love me back.
In 2011 I worked out hard(pretty much 2-2.5 hours a day) because I had the time and I tend to hyper focus, so when I have a goal or idea I go all out. Well, when working out at a college gym, I noticed a lot of women struggling with disordered eating. So I had a few moments of my own(which did not leave me happy about myself so I stopped). Because of those moments, whenever I hear someone in the bathroom and I know what they are doing, I ask them if they are ok(to try and stop them) and sometimes it works, other times they just tell me they are pregnant(I’m not a judge).
When I went vegan, I weaned myself off of meat and seafood(I make excuses for cheese but it doesn’t love me either). I knew that I had made the right decision for me. When people would ask me about it, I shared my story with them freely. No one took me up on the offer. It also greatly improved my health.
When you are working on weight loss you are encouraged to have a goal weight(we all have some magic number in our heads that we think will be perfect for us). I actually had to stop telling people my goal weight because the reactions that I got were so negative. That is ok. We will always have people who don’t see our vision or plan. It is not our job to convince anyone of it. We just have to do it.
I work out and train because I love it and I hope to live a long healthy life. You can lose weight in a healthy manner(I did it and hope to continue on my journey). Some days I just have to focus on the small moments(like knowing that I have kept off at least 30 pounds for the last 3 years). I also work out because of the brain benefits(I love dopamine and I think its awesome that I can get a natural dose from exercise). So, if you saw The Biggest Loser and didn’t like what you saw, get out there and change your life one day at a time. Your health is waiting for you.