Friday, May 15, 2009

The Biggest Loser recap

So, I haven't blogged in a while, but that's because I was on a crazy-go-nuts trip this week that took me from DFW to DC, then back to DFW (where I at least got to have a leisurely dinner with TDP DinoBoy and Hubby) before heading back to Denver/Boulder for the rest of the work week. Craziness. But I was able to get one great run in mid-week, although I wish I'd had the energy to have more than one. There just wasn't enough time to fit in five flights, airport time and 40 hours of work and some semblance of sleep into four and a half days. Plus there was a crazy-go-nuts drive on Monday evening that should have been FIVE MINUTES down a big thick road (on the map it looked big and thick) but ended up as a 90-minute rain-soaked drive around DC peppered with signs to Maryland, homeless people knocking on my window, and a notable lack of street signs. On the upside, I did see the New Zealand Embassy!

Yeah, and in the midst of that, I also missed out on The Biggest Loser finale, since I was 32,000 feet above West Texas and in a cab while it was on the air. I thought about doing a self-imposed media blackout on it until I could get home and watch it on the DVR, but thought that might be impossible, so I just gave up early Wednesday and googled it. I was not completely surprised that Helen won, but I was a little taken aback by exactly how thin she was. At 117 pounds, she is just above the "underweight" category on the BMI scale. She has lost more than half of her original weight. And while I'm happy for her, I have to say that in reading her follow-up interviews, you can see how she was able to do it:

I would get up at 4:30 every morning and hit the gym two hours in the morning, two hours in the afternoon and two hours in the evening. In between, of course, I ate plenty of good food and got rest. It paid off.

Some of the other articles I've read mentioned that she didn't go back to work (she had left her job before going to the Ranch), and hired three different trainers. Her kids are older (like the daughter that went to the ranch with her) so they don't require attention or shuttling to and fro for their activities. She also said that she didn't go out with her friends during the time she was home after leaving the last weigh-in -- if they wanted to see her, they had to meet her at the gym. Sounds pretty intense.

Again, I'm not knocking her. I'm glad she was able to get this under control. But I think it's fairly obvious that this is NOT a realistic lifestyle, either for her to maintain long term, or for anyone else with a job, a family, and daily responsibilities. Could I fit six hours of training into each day? Maybe, but not with this job, and not with having to cook, clean, chase homework around, and drive kids to hockey and gymnastics. Would it take six hours a day for me to look like that? Maybe not. Am I willing to try? Not so much. Balance, people, balance.

I imagine that when I get to the point in a few years where I am actively training for long-distance triathlon (still on my radar despite not actually being on a bicycle in several months) that I might hit two or three hours of training a day, with more on the weekends for the long runs and long rides. But one of the reasons I put that off for now is that I can't dedicate that much time to training. Not when my kids are still home and needing my attention, and not when I'm only home three days a week to give them that attention as it is. So does that mean that I've given up on losing weight and getting into fighting shape in addition to my running and whatever tri-training I can get this summer? Absolutely not. All I'm saying is that I need to have some balance, and as much as I love to see the great dramatic results from TBL, I know they are not at all realistic for me to emulate. But it does make for good TV.

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