Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Biggest Loser - Final Four

CAUTION – SPOILER ALERT! If you recorded this week’s episode, I am going to be talking about it. So, be warned!

OK, so, I don’t normally discuss TBL too much on here, mostly because I have conflicting feelings about being a fan of the show. To be sure, I am a fan; although somewhat reluctantly. I love to watch them lose the weight; my favorite part of the whole show is seeing how much they lost (or didn’t lose if it’s someone that I don’t like shut up). I enjoy watching the challenges and the temptations. I really love the doctor that they have on there and I love watching him tell some of the sicker contestants how much their health has improved, etc. The Makeover episode is always my very favorite; you always see these people in workout clothes, sweaty and emotional, so it’s totally cool to see them dressed up, coiffed, and made up. I am SO glad that they tackled Mike and Daris’s hair!!! Damn! You know Mike had to lose at least five pounds in just hair alone!!

I am also a somewhat reluctant fan of the show because I fear that some people will actually be discouraged by it. These people lose HUGE amounts of weight in a really short period of time by eating 1200-1500 calories a day and working out literally 6-8 hours PER DAY. (Mike losing more than 200 lbs in 17 weeks? It’s insane!!) There are very few people in the real world that can manage that, and I worry that there are some people that get discouraged that they cannot match this in their own lives. There are also so many people – on the show and in the real world – that have deeper issues than laziness and improper nutritional knowledge that have contributed to their weight problems. Jillian and Bob seem pretty well equipped to deal with the emotional breakdowns that inevitably occur, but I really hope that they are getting some psychological counseling behind the scenes as well. The product placement is also really irritating. It cracks me up how the contestants are supposed to be so surprised and grateful that Bob shows them how chewing a certain brand of gum can help them SO MUCH with their weight loss journey. Give me a freakin’ break.

Over all, I feel the show does more good than harm.

Having said that, let’s dish.

I wasn’t too terribly surprised by who made it into the final four. I knew that all three guys would make it, but I was kinda hoping that it would be Sunshine that represented the women. I have nothing at all against Ashley – don’t get me wrong. I am just kind of taken with Sunshine and her attitude. I think it was a good thing that she and her father had to spend some time apart; I loved her Dad and he was so incredibly proud and supportive of his daughter, but I think she needed some time to herself. She needed to be able to stand on her own, without Dad there to hold her up, and I think she rose to that challenge quite admirably. I was really happy for her reception from her community when she got home. I felt bad that she didn’t get the 100lb even mark – you know how important those number goals can be to some of us – and to be one pound short would SUCK! But she didn’t really seem to be bothered by it, so that shows me that I really shouldn’t be as stuck on the numbers thing as I am. Sigh…so much to work on.

I thought it was very interesting that they brought back Erick Chopin to talk to the contestants this week. I was so shocked and devastated when I learned that he had gained every pound back that he had lost! How could someone lose that much weight, and then allow themselves to regain ALL of it?? It was a real eye opener to say the least. I am glad that the show found out about it and that they are helping him to start again, but this is one of the problems that I have with the show. Erick admitted that he became focused solely on winning the game and the cash prize. He totally lost sight of the fact that losing the weight was the REAL prize here. He saw the end of the show as the finish line, when he should have realized it was really the starting line. The work he did on the show was merely prep work for the rest of his life; just because the show was over, didn’t mean he could just go back to doing what he was doing before. And this became clear to the whole fan base and viewing audience of the world. I admire the fact that he is humble enough to accept this and the help of the show to get back on track, and I was very happy to see that he as lost 70lbs so far. I have a feeling that Erick’s visit contributed to Mike’s meltdown in the gym later on. I think that being such a heavy guy in the beginning, and losing the weight he has lost so quickly, he is worried about what will happen to him when he leaves the Ranch for good. I think when he saw Erick, his own fears of relapse and regaining his weight really hit him hard and right in the nads with steel toed boots. But I think that Mike lost about 5lbs with that outburst of his; emotional blockages can weigh a lot! I was glad to see that he seemed to be able to pull himself together and get on with it.

Mike’s other problem seemed to be that he felt like a failure for leaving the Ranch with still so much weight to lose. He could not see the super major accomplishment he had already made, and was focusing on what he felt he had NOT accomplished. Some people may look at that and think, “What the hell is wrong with this guy? How can he not see that losing 200lbs in 17 weeks is freaky fantastic???” Well, welcome to the wonderful world that the morbidly obese live in. (ps – I absolutely HATE that term, morbidly obese. I know it is medically correct, but it just sounds so…terrible…ugly.) It can be a huge adjustment to get used to what you see in the mirror. Some people don’t recognize themselves in the mirror anymore; some people don’t see the change at all. When he watched the film of himself at the end of the episode, I think he finally did the difference. It made him look at the pictures objectively; being able to see a split frame of then vs. now instead of the gradual process in the mirror seemed to really hit home. And it will REALLY hit home when he gets home and sees the public’s reaction! I am really pulling for him to succeed in his new life after TBL.

But what no one mentioned on the air is that Mike is NOT the only one leaving the Ranch that is still obese; Ashley still has a long way to go as well. She is still in the 275lb range and that is not under the “obese” radar by any means. And she has a really big strike against her – she is female. Let’s be honest; guys really struggle with weight loss like women do, but not in the same ways that women do. It’s not an excuse gals, but guys – it’s a fact. If men had to deal with hormones, menstruation, and water retention like we do, I guarantee you the world would be a seriously different place! But that is a subject for a totally different blog post. I worry about Ashley because of her friends. She comes from a lifestyle that has a lot of partying, and I have to be honest and say I have no clue what that is like, so I don’t really have a lot of firm footing to toot my horn from. I just hope that her friends are just as supportive when she is not drinking as much as they were when she was. I am rooting for her too.

While Mike is my emotional favorite this season, I really want Daris to win. He is a cutie patootie!!! He will be beating off the women with a stick with a nail in it when he gets home. My heart just wept for him when, in the beginning of the show, he talked about being the big fat funny guy that danced with all of his friend’s girlfriends, but then he was the one that went home alone. I could really relate to that. He is the type of person that everyone loves to be around, and constantly ask, “Why doesn’t that boy have a girlfriend? He is AWESOME dude!” The only reply to that usually comes when the person stands naked in the bathroom, looking at himself and silently replying, “Duh!” Daris has a great attitude and I think he will go really far in life. He is really lucky that this happened to him this early in life; he has time to reconstruct his mindset, and the cash would be great for college. GO DARIS!!

I don’t really have a lot to say about Koli; I really like him and I wish him all the best, but somehow I just don’t think he will win. I was sad to see Sam go home – that man should be a motivational speaker! But Koli and Sam seemed to be too joined at the hip, and I worried that without Sam, Koli would fold like a card table. I was really glad to see that he sacked up and survived without having Sam to push him. He needs to do this for himself and let Sam worry about Sam. I just don’t think that he has enough weight left to lose to win the grand prize on the show, but I think that he will also do well after the show is over.

Well, there you have it. My long-winded, more than two cents worth. Whew! Now, if someone asked me if I wanted to be on TBL, I would say, “Oh hell yes!” I think that, even with the reservations I have about the show, it would still be a great jumping-off point for my weight loss if nothing else.
Speaking of my weight loss, I am still just hanging in there until pay day, which is TOMORROW! YAY!!! I am having a lot of trouble with getting my water in every day and I am paying the price for it this week: my skin is really dry, ankles want to swell up, my face is acting up, and I’m definitely constip…oh, sorry, drifting into TMI territory there, but you get the idea.

I just don’t know what to do about the drinking thing. I hate water. It has to be ice cold in order for me to choke it down. Fortunately at work we have bottled water with the hot/cold dispenser thingy, so that helps. My biggest issue is that I do not get thirsty – ever – and it just never occurs to me to have a drink of water. I have tried putting reminders in my Outlook so that pop-ups appear on my computer every so often, reminding me to go get a drink, but that gets incredibly annoying and if someone else is filling in for me at my desk, they think there is something seriously wrong with me (there is, but they don’t need to be reminded of it every 20 minutes). I usually only have something to drink when I am eating, usually because it’s included in the combo meal…um, er…I mean…oh, busted. If it wasn’t for our Western culture that includes beverages with each meal, I would never remember to drink anything! On the weekends, it’s not at all unusual for me to not drink anything at all – that is a minimum of 48 hours without liquids. Sad. And scary.

Any suggestions? I’m open.


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