Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Gaining on The Biggest Loser

When it comes to exercise fads, I tend to adopt an attitude of wait and see. Unfortunately, this tends to turn into saw and weight gained.

fingers in L on foreheadNevertheless, in the past few weeks I have gone to “Boot Camp" with NBC-TV's The Biggest Loser and shredded with Jillian Michaels.

Result: Nearly a pound … gained??

I suspect karma at work given my history with fitness trends.

Let's first return to the days when Jane Fonda and her leg warmers were still all the craze. My girlfriend at the time started badgering me into taking an aerobics class.

"It will be fun!" I distinctly remember her saying while she stood half undressed and handling a bottle of butterscotch Magic Shell. Obviously, I misinterpreted just what the "it" was to which she was referring.

After she found the right color headband and ripped sweatshirt (uh, for me), I followed her puppy dog-like to the gym. Here we paid a small fee to join a few dozen other people in what was essentially running in place for the next 30 minutes. When the cool-down period came, I took off the parking brake, shifted into fourth and hauled my sweaty self straight out the door.

Many years later, I was chatting with a formerly corpulent co-worker who was now obsessed with working out. How obsessed? When she found out that her and her fiancée were to be honeymooning at the same place in Bermuda that My Love and I had, her first question was not about pink beaches, room service or the quality of Egyptian cotton in the sheets, but "just how well-equipped is the fitness center?"

Anyway, our talk eventually turned to her slavish devotion to the hottest thing in exercise. At the moment, it was spinning. She relayed tales about the thrills and chills of pumping up imaginary hills through a visible fog of sweaty stench in a converted storage closet at her local Y, all to the ear-splitting  beat of rave music. Somehow my dismissal of her latest life-changing event as "paying someone to yell at you while you ride a stationary bike" didn’t go over well.

This past Christmas, the mailman brought us a mess of workout DVDs featuring Michaels and her Biggest Loser cohort Bob Harper (whose face is barely recognizable on the covers because of the excessive airbrushing to remove his trademark stubble/beard). This made sense as My Love and our kids love this TV show though I notice an unsettling tendency for them to watch it while gobbling down huge bowls of kettle corn.

Nevertheless, after four workouts with these fitness gurus, broken up with a day of running and two days of barely being to move because I was so sore, I'm proud to report that I am refusing to quit. This is despite the weight gain, Bob's indefatigable upbeatness and Jillian's ever-present sneer. If nothing else, when I haven't been in pain from all the flippin' lunges and pushups they make you do, I have felt better about myself -- mentally if not physically. This is a trend I am going to try to stick with until I fully reverse some of bad ones I have been living.

… until three days after I wrote this when I tried to outrun Thing 1’s soccer team during a sprinting drill and heard my hamstring pop.

Karma, you bitch.


  1. Youch! That really burns. At least I am assuming it does. You really are the biggest loser here, aren't you?

    Hope you feel better soon man.

  2. Whoa. How bad? I bet if I bought a stationary bike I could get my little girl to yell at me while I rode it. "Daddy, I'm hungry! Daddy, there's poop in my underwear!"

    Hang in there dude. Rest Ice Compression Elevation.

  3. Ouch! Neon headband and torn sweatshirt. Leg warmers too?

    But seriously, torn hamstring. No fun there. Unless of course Your Love dons that Nurse's costume... (Yeah, no chance of that in this house either!)

  4. You've already demonstrated your tremendous ability to exercise restraint when you skipped the whole ice cream part of that butterscotch Magic Shell fiesta. We've all done crazy things for some Magic Shell...

  5. I may have pulled a hammy just reading that.

  6. OH NO! ARe you serious about your hamstring? Dang it Kevin that is serious and hurts like a Motha!

    I'm sorry. That sucks.

    I was going to laugh and be witty until I read that part!

  7. I think you need to take the weekend and not move a muscle. Might be good to get your wife do all your work for you.

  8. Feeling ya. I'm 3-1/2 weeks into hamstring rehab, myself. 2-1/2 more weeks and then back into soccer.

  9. Wow, that hammy thing really sucks! I hate working out and, though I really need to, I just look so damn cute in my gear!

  10. Damn. I've been on the my-wife-is-in-the-hospital-and-I'm-too-broke-to-afford-take-out-diet. Wife says my face doesn't look as fat so it must be working.

  11. Oh that hurts. I popped one in HS and wasn't right for weeks.

    ...well, time to bust out the kettle corn.

  12. I absolutely cannot stand Gillian Michaels. I don't mind her as a person and as a business woman. I just can't stand her method of motivation and that stupid sneer (which you seem to have noticed also :-) ). Bob I don't mind. But Gillian tries to be a drill instructor, and she's not convincing.

    Anyway, my sister says the biggest loser workout DVDs are awesome. I don't believe her (mostly because she's not in very good shape!) LOL. Well, the proof is in the pudding. I suspect it would would given enough dedication -- but then again I think hard work is hard work any way we slice it.

    What I'm ineloquently trying to say is Good Luck, man! Keep it up and progress will invariable come. Yeah, that was a lame pep talk, I know. Sorry..

  13. Good on you for not quitting. I went on a diet at the start of the year and lost 15 pounds. I hated every minute of it. I've since put the 15 pounds back on, with interest. Again, Karma!

  14. You actually heard it pop? Sweet Christ in a chicken coop.

  15. Legwarmers! I had fuzzy rainbow ones. I'm gonna go watch Flashdance now.


REMEMBER: You're at your sexiest when you comment.


My Uncool Past