I don’t watch the Biggest Loser too much anymore. It’s great to see so many people lose so much weight, but it’s just more of the same. One of the things that I’ve grown tired of is the role that the trainers tend to take on. The personal heart-to-heart talks (in front of millions of people) peppered throughout the show end up with the trainers counseling the contestants. They are in great physical condition, but in a way, that actually makes them less qualified to offer advice in these instances.
I can see troubled people getting insight from those who’ve gone through the same thing. That’s why AA works so well. But, as far as I can see, these trainers haven’t dug themselves out of a 400-pound hole. So, all that Bob, Jillian and Colvett can offer are platitudes on the mental aspects of large people struggling to lose weight.
If you can’t tell by now, I’ve had many bouts with weight loss. From my point of view, NBC should bring in Jerry from the Subway commercials or even Richard Simmons for those sobby segments. They wouldn’t be acting; they’d be empathizing. They know what it’s like to struggle with binging, like the lady on last night’s episode who actually gained weight this week (my kids watch it and I caught a few minutes near the end). More than someone who feels bad for her, she needs someone who understands when the fight is so hard.
I don’t want to be too hard on the show because helping people lose weight is a great cause. It has gone a long way in revealing some of the real pain for heavy people. It combats the stigma that all overweight people don’t care about themselves. It gives great insight on the right things to eat and on the best exercise for weight loss.
But, how many of us have the luxury to go away for several weeks, the motivation of a crazy amount of money or the potential of endorsements even if we don’t win? It’s not real life – and I need real life.
Just like my faith, really. Jesus is human, so he’s not a professional who merely studies our struggles. He’s not just an expert on real life – he’s gone through it. I’d be on that show any day.