Tuesday, February 02, 2010

I'd Like To Be These Losers

The missus and I are fans of some of TV's most popular reality shows. We both enjoy Survivor, Amazing Race as well as Top Chef. Wendy has one more reality favorite, The Biggest Loser.

So when our employer sponsored a roundtable featuring four former contestants from that show recently, my wife signed us up to attend. Fine with me. I could use some inspiration as I try to get into shape for our upcoming trip to Florida. If I lay on the beach down there, I don't want some animal rescue group trying to roll me "home" into the surf.

Just seeing these four former contestants sitting together at a table in front of an audience of a hundred or so was inspirational enough. You would never guess that these people had serious issues. Helen boasted that she had just run a half-marathon (she lost 140 pounds during her competition). Pete, the lone gentleman, appeared to me to be toning up for a boxing match. And not as a heavyweight either (he lost 185 pounds during his stint on the program).

I suppose members of the audience were there for their own reasons--some were family, some were curious, some were fans of the show, some like us were there for inspiration. And each one of us had their own personal take on the proceedings, generally a question-and-answer session.

Here's what I got out of it . . .

Contestants for a reality show like this, and I believe for most any reality show, are definitely not shy. Nor are they afraid to give their opinions in front of an audience. Let me do the math. They were there for one hour. Other than giving a brief introduction of themselves, they each took two questions from the event organizer. And two questions total from the audience. And that easily filled the hour. They certainly enjoyed telling their stories.

What I found most intriguing was that, despite losing up to 100 pounds or more on a national stage and getting down to a weight where they felt energetic and healthy, the temptation to splurge and put it back was still strong. Pete talked about a post-program feast on a box of 10 fudgsicles. But since they were only 40 calories each, it was still much better than his pre-program snack of a pint of Haagen Dazs while watching the Pistons (1,300 calories).

Helen told her own entertaining story of having a craving for carrot cake--one of my favorites as well. She explained how big holidays meant a large spread for her Polish family. Facing a buffet like that was still a challenge.

The night before our program, Helen said she was staying at the local Weber's Inn in Ann Arbor and in a common area nearby a fellow guest was throwing this huge party with lots of party and comfort food. Maybe they even had carrot cake, she wondered.

Then Helen ran into one of the party hosts while eyeing up the dessert table. Helen heard the host say to her, "You like the sweets?"

Helen professed, "Oh yes, I do. Do you have carrot cake?"

The lady looked at Helen a bit confused, then said once more, 'Do you like the suite?'"

Funny story. And there were many stories like this with which we could all relate to. Hopefully, the inspiration I got from their presentations will keep me away from carrot cake too. And Lays potato chips. And Mcdonalds Big Macs. Double whoppers. Regular Coke, creme-filled long johns, Cheezits, root beer, White Castles . . .

15 Comments:

Blogger Lynilu said...

shoot. Now I'm hungry.

7:06 PM  
Blogger TechnoBabe said...

Now take your very last paragraph and with a marker make an arrow from that paragraph up to the last sentence of your second paragraph! "Nuff said.

8:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...Christmas colored peanut M & M's...

8:59 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

LYNILU--Why is it when we go on diets we think and talk about food? At least I do.

TECHNOBABE--Heh, heh, good point. I've actually been Lays potato chip free for quite some time now. I did have a muffin on Monday though.

ANONYMOUS--Yeah, I was looking for the regular Christmas colored M&Ms but they were all sold out. I actually prefer chocolate covered raisins.

I've got to cut this out. Time for lunch anyway.

9:08 AM  
Blogger B.S. said...

Yeah, the way I diet is by changing my splurging food. Instead of an entire bag of Lay's, I'll have 4 enormous mega bowls of air-popped popcorn drizzled with olive oil and a little salt. I'll replace that half gallon of ice cream with some sort of fat free concoction or yogurt. Maybe someday I'll learn how to not be a glutton.

12:04 PM  
Blogger Merle said...

Hi Dave ~~ The spammers are a nuisance and hard to delete. So you had to check up on Snopes about Jasmine. She was too good to be true, wasn't she? and why haven't they made a movie about her

I like your wife, Wendy's "No rain -no rainbow." I like that. We had a wonderful 2 inches of rain on Thursday, so I didn't even worry about a rainbow. It was so good.
I should lose weight, but as long as I feel well, I don't worry
about it. Just won't lie on any beaches either!!! Take care,
my friend. Regards, Merle.

8:43 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

B.S.--That's what I learned from those Big Loser people, it's not easy. Sometimes I think we're programmed from birth to eat what we do.

MERLE--Wendy also says "Jackpot" a lot which comes from that same commercial. That one gets on my nerves a little.

5:54 AM  
Anonymous bonnie said...

The title of your post led me to believe that it would encompass your Wolverives. Whew!

Ayurveda, the sister science of yoga, is a 5,000 year old healing science which brings balance to the body. By learning more about one's own dosha (constitution) one can begin moving toward optimal health.

I'll stay cool during the Superbowl by sipping on coconut water and snacking on grilled veggies topped with ghee and sesame seeds.

Namaste, Dave.

8:19 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

BONNIE--A famous philospher and poet long ago once said, I believe, to Wolverine competitors under similar circumstances, "No matter how often you are defeated, you are born to victory. Go blue."

Grilled vegetables are delicious, agreed, but you can't bbq those here in Michigan in the winter. Can't do yoga in the winter here either. Too cold for both.

2:21 PM  
Blogger Lee said...

G'day Big Dave...long time no see..I've been very remiss, I know...and I really have no good excuse to offer!

Hope all is well with you and yours.

5:16 PM  
Blogger Lee said...

Btw...was that you who contacted me about Facebook, Dave...it's just struck me now (light bulb moment) that it was you and I think I deleted your email. Try again, if you so desire. :)

5:40 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

LEE--Hi Lee! I had to think a moment but the "G'day" gave me a clue. Doing well here, thanks. But that wasn't me on Facebook. Another fan, no doubt.

3:44 AM  
Blogger Carine said...

you're not going to want to hear this Dave-just got back from the doctors. I don't own a scale, but I was imagining that I felt "skinnier". It seems I lost 8 pounds since my last appt 3 months ago.

okay-i've been trying (remember, this is how i broke my hand!), I'm still shocked. happy, but shocked

3:28 PM  
Anonymous caroldee said...

Well I dont watch that show I am a real Survivor fan though.. those people reallllly lose weight and sometime they keep it off too. This season starts on Thursday and will be a wild one! Not on a diet here but do crave things once in a while. take care : )

7:25 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

CARINE--I hope I don't need to break my hand to lose weight. Maybe it's the extra workout you get from wearing a cast. It's like carrying a three-pound weight around. Then you need to be a yoga-meister to twist and turn to get your buttons buttoned and your ties tied.

Hea, you might be interested to know that one of the ladies who appeared on our panel is on the cover of Good Housekeeping this month.

CAROLDEE--Survivor this week. Heroes and villains! I'm cheering for Rupert.

9:09 AM  

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