The Truth About the Biggest Loser

Filed under: Weight Loss

So I was thinking about what I wanted to blog today, and was really struggling to find a good topic. I wasn’t in the mood to write about a particular food, so I was putting it off by helping out some online clients and feeling kinda apathetic about a topic. Then my answer comes to me; my fiance puts the Biggest Loser on and I want to gouge my eyes out. I understand how this show can be inspiring and dramatic and can maybe actually motivate some people to lose weight. I get that. If it helps you get up and out and increase your activity, awesome. When you do though, please educate yourself. The exercise they put those poor people through is so idiotic and dangerous it boggles my mind. Standing on an overweight woman’s legs while she is doing a wall sit? Brilliant!

In all seriousness though, it really is INSANE that they make these people complete a marathon. People who are fit and train hard for that one purpose get injured doing that exact thing. What makes them think that unfit, overweight and still vastly undertrained individuals can do this without a significant risk of injury? One participant started having blood sugar complications and poor blood circulation like 5 miles in. It is doing these people a serious injustice, and misleading the uneducated people of America that this is a good way to get in shape. Running a marathon may not be easy, but I assure you, it is not anywhere near the safest nor most efficient method to get the body you want.

Now I am not trying to say that what this show did for these people is not amazing. The ones still on have each lost over 100lbs, an absolutely incredible achievement that I am not downplaying in the least. I am ranting about the training methods used, and shown to America as being the way people should train. It gives a terribly false impression and expectations of what a beginner’s training should look like. It is a battle that is really frustrating to have to wage, as it almost glorifies the training practices of the idiots in this industry.



In the end, cheer for these people, vote for them, enjoy their journey and take inspiration from their effort and achievement, but please do not in anyway try to copy their methods. It will only leave you injured and further behind than before.

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Posted on May 5th, 2009 by Brian St. Pierre


  1. Bob Parr Says:

    I agree the show does a disservice in making people think that it’s necessary or desirable to train (read abuse your joints) for hours a day doing steady state cardio followed by ill-conceived strength training. (Why have a 400-lb person do dumbbell curls??)

    Also, way too little information is given about eating, with most of that in the form of narrowly-disguised product placements.

  2. sal Says:

    I agree with what you said, but then again, I must say that I am surprised how few injuries there are on the show. When you consider that these 300-400 lb people who havent done anything for decades all of a sudden start working out everyday, you would expect tons of injuries. This season though, of all the contestants, only one was injured, which to me is kindof surprising seeing the training they are doing.

  3. Parth Says:

    Oh man, I’m glad you wrote about this. Everytime I go write about this, I start cursing and pulling my hair out. (I do like Jillian though). But basically, you’re right on the money here Brian. I know of a few people who are following the biggest loser “training program” and it just kills me. It’s like watching a house burn down and knowing you can’t do anything about it. Cuz if you say anything to them, you risk offending them. I just did that recently. I read a lot of personal weight loss blogs (for education, read personal weight loss blogs. You’ll learn more about people’s habits than any certification or degree can teach you). I told this lady something, and she emails me and shes like “I would rather you did not read my blog anymore.” I’m just! And most of these people are following the biggest loser program. Just my two cents.

  4. Steph Says:

    Make them do one of the BSP/TG death circuits. As a three time marathoner, I can honestly say that those 6-10 minutes of hell are just that; utter and complete hell. I am shaking at the end. Completely wiped out. And I didn’t have to run freaking 10 miles to feel that way-actually, it’s worst than running 10 miles. Looking forward to my next one.

  5. Tracy Anderson & The Biggest Loser - they are bad for you. | Strength and Fitness info Says:

    [...] The truth about the Biggest loser [...]

  6. The Biggest Loser | Lift Rest Repeat Says:

    [...] Losers…the viewers“.  But I got side-tracked with my own rant and other links, here is another.  Coach Dos does a great job with this post and includes some shocking comments from previous [...]

  7. Jordan Says:

    i need 2 be in the biggest loser im 11 and i way 140

  8. hypothyroidism Says:

    I can’t believe how young these contestants are this year… this will be an interesting season for sure.

  9. randy Says:

    Do they give 1 contestant curly hair on purpose before the show starts?

  10. Says:

    I’ve learn several just right stuff here. Definitely worth
    bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how so much effort you put to create any such fantastic informative site.

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