Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Biggest Loser is back!!!! And bigger than ever?

Season 8 of "The Biggest Loser" has begun! As usual, I am thrilled to take the journey with these new contestants on their way to a healthier new life, and this season promises to dish out all the emotion and drama that one could hope for.

I'm especially interested in the contestant Shay, who weighed close to 500 pounds on the first day in. I give her so much credit for putting herself out there in the public eye. And I give Jillian Michaels even more credit for not coddling her and calling her out on her victim card! Shay tells the story of her heroine addicted mother who she always had to take care of, causing her to neglect herself and pack on the pounds. When she quits midway through the FIRST workout, Jillian lets her sit and stew (Trainer Bob want to go get her, because he is such a sweetie) and lets Shay decide for herself not to quit.

There are so many interesting characters- the woman who lost her entire family in a tragic drunk driving accident, the overweight firefighter, the woman whose husband is in the military and is absentee so she gains 100 pounds- she runs so fast in the beginning she collapses and ends up in the hospital for the rest of the episode- just to name a few. We also see Dan, the contestant from last season who has come back for his second chance. I am proud to see he is a motivator and hasn't given up even though he was voted off last season. I know his partner was a dissappointing factor last time- this time he is partnered with Shay. And I know she'll need his guidance to keep from quitting.

I am excited that they are testing out new medical equipment on the contestants to keep an eye on their bodies and see how obesity affects them. The public needs to see that being fat is not good for you- food can be just as strong a drug as alcohol, nicotine, and well, drugs. The part of the show where they did the brain scan to see what parts of the brain were stimulated when these contestants had impulses for food was so amazing.

The factor I find the most troubling with "The Biggest Loser" is where do they keep finding these overweight candidates? This season promises the heaviest contestants yet, but I keep waiting for the season when this show has motivated it's viewership enough that they aren't getting heavier and heavier.

Is "The Biggest Loser" working? I see all the commercials for all the different products- meal plans, books, equipment, online support. Is "The Biggest Loser" only entertainment? Or a true motivational tool?

We will see. . .

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