Personal Trainer in Kuala Lumpur (KL), Cyberjaya, Putrajaya, PJ, KLCC, TTDI, Damansara

19 April 2010

My Thoughts on The Biggest Loser Reality Show

I saw on the official Biggest Loser Asia facebook group that audition for season 2 is coming soon. To be honest, I did have the thought of asking some of my obese friends to join the audition back in the debut season although I've personally not watched more than 10 episodes of Biggest Loser USA. And yes, I did NOT watch a single episode of Biggest Loser Asia, in fact I can't even remember what was their airing time and day on Astro. I only saw the the winner's photo as people were talking about him over the internet. And I personally think that he looked sick.

Before and After - Biggest Loser Asia Season 1 winner

The reason is simple. I'm disgusted with what was and still being portrayed on television about losing weight. It gives a wrong impression of what we as fitness professionals do for our clients. And reality show isn't exactly reality, at all !

In reality, we do not train up to 4-5 hours per day, what more for people who before being in the show, were sedentary. What we see on television is not even half of what actually happened in the training center. If we were looking at American College of Sports Medicine's guidelines of losing weight safely, It is not safe to be losing 10-25 pounds per week. I would say what we see on television is more of a one time quick fix plan to lose weight rather than adapting a healthy lifestyle.

It's also pretty outdated way in my opinion to just track their weight lost progress. The overall of body composition should have been looked into rather than just weight. You see, our body weight are made up of our body organs, bones, muscles and fat mass. In general health and fitness, we usually look into muscle mass and fat mass for measurement purpose. When you start exercising, don't get panic if you see that your weight never drop on the scale, or perhaps it might even increase. Reason is simple, muscle mass are heavier than fat mass. You lose the fat, and put on muscles, which means there might be no changes on the scale or even heavier. Look at the mirror and see changes in your own body instead. Better still if you can buy the bio-electrical impedance machine (not the most accurate, but it's fine for general guidelines and tracking) and check on your body composition.

But again, all those mentioned above is only based on my judgment from watching less than 10 episodes of Biggest Loser USA. None the less, the show serves as a good motivational tool for people, even for a trainer like myself - when I see Bob Harper and Jillian Michael being so fit in the show.

Bob Harper and Jillian Michael - Trainers of Biggest Loser USA.