Motivation Monday: Biggest Loser Recap

Well, it’s that time again…..time for millions of viewers to slide into our couches and watch a show about weight loss :) Seems a bit odd, right?

Last night marked the beginning of a brand new season for the long running show. Jillian Michaels made a triumphant comeback and was in rare form. Bob Harper is still holding tight to his long-playing role as the top trainer and Dolvett Quince came back to resume his role as well. The BL also added a twist to the show in that they are bringing in 3 kids to be ambassadors for fitness. This means they won’t be at the ranch full-time and they cannot be eliminated. Good move on their part for bringing awareness to the childhood obesity epidemic. Oh, and Alison Sweeney is hosting again and might I say she looked FABULOUS last night!

As I move on through the recap, I need to remind you that the Biggest Loser is first and foremost a REALITY TV SHOW. They cater to ratings. I’m not judging, but I feel that some people watch the show and get caught up in the alternate reality of it all. Take it with a grain of salt people…… First night was exciting for sure. I loved the way each of the trainers handled the kids. Children should be trained differently from adults. Both in training progressions as well as motivation. The adults were a bit of a different story. The first workout was par for the course and each trainer stuck to their respective roles. I have to say, Jillian makes excellent points about the way we treat and speak to ourselves. I love the line she said about “That is abuse. All of this in here is not.” I agree whole heartedly. Now, I may not kick people out of my gym when they get dizzy (I usually offer a G2 and tell them to rest as it’s usually due to poor fueling), but I agree with her tough approach. you have to want it badly enough to challenge what has become your normal.

Aside from people dropping like flies and feeling poorly about the state of their own health (or lack thereof), everything went fairly smooth for the opening evening. As I sat and watched (with the rest of America!) I was bombarded with a lot of thoughts about this entire approach to weight loss. I mean, ALL of the contestants chosen made comments about the fact that they were doing this for their health and/or to live for a certain loved one. So, here’s the thought that keeps banging away at my heart and mind…..Why on Earth do you have to wait to be on a reality show to do it?

Whoa! I know what you’re thinking, “Come on now, at least they’re trying”. I say, no, they haven’t even begun to really try. Here’s the place I’m coming from. I have lost 104 pounds. No trainer, no huge gym, no pre-planned meals, no TV show, no cameras. Some might rebut by saying I already knew how. You would be wrong. I started right where many of these contestants start. There is NO lack of knowledge available, there is a lack of discipline to go get it.

Real fitness is just that, a DISCIPLINE. It’s not about motivation, inspiration or TV ratings. It is developing a discipline within your life to commit to your health and the health of your family. The young man who goes by Bingo (isn’t he precious???) is the same age as my son. It has taken me taking responsibility and telling him “Just a small serving” or “Get up and go do something”. Goodness, most of the time I get up and do things with him! And I’m busy too people, so don’t even try….. Develop a discipline in life and you will succeed. Success is derived from discipline.

So, I promise I’m not hating on the show! I realize that it does get some people inspired and that is worth the watch itself. Here’s the rub though: years ago when I first started teaching aerobics I had a lady who came religiously to my classes, and she was losing weight steadily. Then, one day she stopped coming. A few weeks later, she met me up at the gym. She explained that the Biggest Loser was coming to Houston to hold auditions and since you have to be a certain amount overweight to participate, she stopped working out and was gorging to gain her weight back. Houston, we have a serious problem….

Why do we think that only a TV show can save us? We are enamored with the celebrity of it all. Ask any professional actor and they will tell you the celebrity part is the worst part of the whole thing. Yet, we pine for it. It’s as though we honestly believe that living in an alternate reality is the only way we can succeed. To that I say this: if you believe you can only succeed in an alternate reality, you have already given yourself to failure. There was a man chosen who stated he had waited 3 years for his chance to be on the show. THREE YEARS!!!!! Do you have any idea what he could have accomplished in 3 years?!? And yes, I get the fact that when you do it on your own there are no cash rewards, no accolades, no interviews……but honey, it is so worth it!

The dedicated discipline you earn from putting in your own work far exceeds anything a reality show can offer! You want to see a change in this world? Start a fire in you first! Be the one that begins to develop a change in your own family. Take personal responsibility for your health and fitness. Stop making excuses and playing the victim! You and I are no different from each other. We both hurt, we bleed, we struggle, and if you’re like me, we have a raging sweet tooth! But you know what? Fitness doesn’t care who you are, how much money you make a year, where you start, or how long it may take. Fitness is available to EVERYBODY. You don’t need a membership, you don’t need a certain color shirt and you sure don’t need to be picked from a crowd. Did you realize that as of right now over 66% of the United States is struggling with obesity? That’s the MAJORITY! You are no longer going to sit idle amongst the majority, waiting hopefully for your name to be called. You will stand from this day on. You will walk tall and know that YOU CAN DO THIS.

So, what’s it going to be? Are you in or are you out? Are you tired of waiting for your “chance”? Be the first to step out and make a real change…..no script required :)

LIVE OUT LOUD!

Michelle

How to put the SHUSH on negative thoughts

This may seem like an odd post coming from somebody who has made a living in the body alteration field. That’s kind of a fancy word for trainer :)

I feel that this post could not be more timely. As I wander into Summer, I am enlightened to the way people behave. My mom was a serious people watcher, so I guess it just trickled down. Anyways, what I have noticed is that we women have developed carefully strategized habits of degradation that have been part of our make up for generations. My goal is to put a stop to the madness. Seriously…

Now, buckle up because this is going to take more than one post, I assure you. So, why am I so impassioned about breaking the cycle? I was raised by a beautiful woman who never knew her worth and believed the lies of society. I am now raising a young woman of my own and I want this to end with her generation. As of right now, there are scores of women not living up to their full life purpose because they believe a lie. It’s time to step into our own and be the women this up and coming generation can really look up to.

Body image is attacked daily. Although America is not the only place, I believe it is most rampant here (though I may be biased!). We constantly look at pencil thin models (no fault to those who are naturally thin! God made you that way, so love it), supremely etched athletes and glowing movie stars with bodacious booties. There is nothing wrong with these images in and of themselves now, it’s the emotion they can tend to prod. As women, we make a few body image mistakes that must first be realized and then corrected. Please, do it for you and our future…

  1. We compare. There, I said it! Women compare ourselves to other women and often we compare other women with other women. We can quickly size somebody up or down, depending on our mood. We not only compare our bodies, but also our hair, nails, facial structure, mothering, homes, cleaning, husbands, careers, children, cars, etc. Do you get the point here? And all the men say “I KNEW IT!”. Duh! That’s how we know when you’re looking at another women (even by accident). It’s because we already sized her up.
  2. We decide that we are not as good as… You may fill in the blank here. I have found that no matter how much a woman has, or if she seemingly can juggle it all, we all face insecurities and allow them to whittle away at who we are.
  3. We degrade ourselves…in public. Oh, I am a guilty party, but I must admit I am getting better. One thing I always try to teach my life coaching clients is how to take a compliment. That is by far the hardest lesson! We usually end up with this scenario: “What a lovely dress”. “This old thing? I just threw it on and it’s all wrinkled because I haven’t had time to do the laundry much less get my hair done or get a good night’s sleep. Do you see the bags under my eyes?!?!?” Have you been there? Rather it’s that we really feel so poorly about ourselves or that we don’t wish to hurt another (um, they paid the compliment), we deny our beauty.
  4. We are convinced that we must live up to a standard of perfection that DOES NOT EXIST. There are no perfect bodies. There are no perfect lives. There are those that strive for perfection, sure. And there are those can fake perfect pretty good (give me some spray tanner and glitter oil and I’ll show you abs! LOL), but perfect does not exist in this world. Heaven is the only place where perfection truly resides, and the last time I checked I wasn’t there yet :) .
  5. We hold on too tight. Just as we can hold grudges (oh, you know you do) we can also hold on to the way we think we should be/act/look with a vengeance. We have a hard time letting go of a certain number on the scale (because life was perfect when I was THAT weight), or a number on our jeans. We have unrelenting commitment to being “there” again.

Now, I’m not suggesting we all put our flannel pj’s on, stop shaving (eewww, no) and watch I Love Lucy reruns while eating oreos all day. Healthy is good. Obsession and self degradation is bad.

One thing to realize is that when we say we hate our bodies or certain parts of our bodies, our children burn that into their psyche. Our negative self-image becomes their genetic makeup. Scary thought? It is to me! A study was done years ago that followed young ladies from their tween years to adulthood, studying family dynamics. While the study meant to focus on family meal times and involvement linked to self-esteem, they stumbled upon even more eye-opening discoveries. The young ladies whose mother’s had poor body image grew up with eating disorders. These were normal, working class families. As it turns out, the girls where either scared of getting their moms thighs (or gut, or butt, you choose), OR they already felt as though their body was sub-par. Your words count!

So, what do we do now? There is hope. There is hope for each of us, no matter the age. The first thing to realize is that there is no perfect. I mean, none of us has seen perfect so who’s to say your body isn’t it right? Start today by taking small steps towards a better body image. Workout because it makes you feel good, NOT to get a tighter butt or flatter abs. If you, like me, struggle with your midsection, remember that it housed a life (or 2-3 or more!) for 9 months! Sheesh, cut yourself a break. Embrace your stretch marks. My stretch marks are my war wounds for giving birth to a nearly 10 pound baby. WonderWoman? You bet!

When you feel as though negative thoughts are invading your mind, remember that you were made for a specific purpose. There is nobody else on Earth that can do what God sent you here to do. It may be HUGE or it may seem small, but it is yours. Let go of those negative conversations. Just stop giving your energy to it. For some of us, these thoughts are so deep seeded it will take time and faith to purge them, but take note from a survivor: it is worth the effort.

You are beautiful, never accept anything less in your mind :)

Michelle