Tag Archives: Bullshit

No, no, no. Yes.

Something’s happening soon and I’m not going to tell you what it is until it’s over. Frankly, I’ll be so busy zinging between feeling thrilled and feeling absolutely horrified that I just can’t handle anyone else watching me go through it until it’s done.  And maybe not even then.

I’m going to be on tv.










Before you get all excited, it’s not for anything to do with my blog.  That would rock, but I would still be just as freaked.  Maybe someday I’ll be on tv because my awesome blog has inspired so many people across the land that the governor declares it National Hot Mess Princess Day…but that’s not what this is.  This is because I’m an idiot fan of our local news show who posts too much on Facebook and got voted “Facebook Friend of the Week” – so they invited me down to the studio to meet the news anchors and get a tour.

That part’s cool, right?  At least I think so.  Many of you who have liked my Facebook fan page helped me win this invitation when I posted my frantic plea for people to vote for me.  (Y’all totally blew my competition out of the water, too…you rock!)  What I didn’t realize at the time, however, was that they don’t just invite you to the studio for a meet & greet.  Nope.  They also put you on the air.


As smooth, charming, and witty as I seem here in my little Hot Mess kingdom (chuckle) I’m really just a big twit.  Especially when I’m feeling nervous.  Or self-conscious.  Seriously, when I’m nervous I could trip on a damn hair.  I go from normal to blithering idiot in 2.2 seconds.

Don’t believe me?  Let me take you back to 1984…when I was on tv the last time.  Me and my BFF were camped out for “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom” at the big swanky movie theater in our town.  I’m a geek, ok?  Shut up.

Every newspaper and local news station was coming out to report on us.  It was very exciting.  And then one reporter decided to interview us on camera.  My BFF, a sun-shiny blonde with a big smile and nerves of steel did an awesome job being interviewed.  Then it was my turn.

Reporter:  “So do you think you’ll ever do this again?”

Me:  (laughing nervously)  “Oh, I don’t think I’ll be doing this again in the recent future!”

What. The. Hell???

…in the recent future.

Yes, I said that on tv.  Yes, everyone I know was watching.  Yes, it took a hundred thousand years for me to live that down.  And I was cute back then!  I had one ass, one chin, and no gray hair.

Cute me. No, I wasn’t a cast member from Twilight…I was just pale from living in a dance studio and never seeing the sun.

I am no longer that cute, oblivious young movie fan.  I am a monstrously overweight chick who, in spite of her seemingly cool exterior, is really a nightmarish bundle of self-conscious bullshit balled up into a pair of plus sized pants.  I do not want to be on camera.

I was on a work retreat in New York once and we did the NBC Studio Tour…and guess who was voted by her co-workers to be the weather girl on the NBC Nightly News set?  Yours truly, of course.  I got up on camera with that map of the U.S. behind me and the first thing out of my mouth was “Holy crap, my ass just eclipsed Texas!!!”  (It’s true, it did…)

Yeah.  And that was just in front of work people and not on the air.  Imagine the damage I’ll do on live tv when I’m nervous.  Holy shit biscuits.

Why can’t I just cancel?  Well, I sort of had to cancel already because of a meeting at work on the day they originally invited me to the studio.  I sent an email explaining my predicament and extended my heartfelt apologies…and they did the unthinkable:  they sent a very gracious invitation to reschedule.  So there’s that.  Not to mention the fact that I beat out other viewers who would have had the opportunity to go.  If I cancel again, I’m a Hot Mess Asshole.  And why?  Because I’m self-conscious?  In the immortal scheme of things, who cares?  No one knows who I am and no one cares.  My last name isn’t Kardashian.  (Thank God!!!)

I know in my head that none of this matters, but deep down in my heart lives that same 10 year old little girl who learned to get all her self-worth from her outer shell.  That little girl will probably always be with me, but my 2013 goal of making exercise a consistent habit is going to do a lot to get her under control.  Unfortunately we’re only 10 days into 2013 and I haven’t quite gotten around to shutting her up.

Here’s what I’m going to do:  I’m going to go…and I’m going to have a great time.  I’m going to enjoy the tour and face my fears and muscle through it – because nothing good happens from hiding in a corner.  And nobody puts Baby in a corner!  Okay, seriously, I can’t be serious.

Hopefully when this is done, I’ll be able to smile and say I had a great time.  I’ll realize how stupid I was to put so much importance on so small a thing.  And, yes, I’ll be back to tell you how it went.  And no, I’m not telling you when and what channel.  I’m not that big of a badass yet.

But I will be.

I will be.

There’s no rest for a fat girl with a plan.


2013: The Year of Moving More

Last year at this time, I was strutting around my living room like Mick Jagger’s fat sister…adamantly proclaiming that 2012 was going to be my year. Take no prisoners, batten down the hatches, I was going to forge through 2012 and make it my bitch.

I feel like I did that, but not in the “In yo face, chump!” way I thought I would. Sometimes when I get very excited I turn into Richard Simmons…and that shit’s not good for anybody. Then I calm down and remember that I’m just me: a former snack cake guzzler who has seen the light.

2012 was my year. (I have a whole “2012 was awesome” post coming on New Year’s Eve. Sort of a snarky retrospective on all things Hot Mess. You’re welcome.) It was the year that I created a bunch of motivational tools to help me hit my goals. It was the year that I realized this is a war of tiny battles…and that if I just focus on the little steps and map out a plan for myself, I can get there from here. And it was the first year that I have ever lost weight (45 pounds) and kept it off. Ever.

True enough, a year ago I imagined that I would plow through the year at full speed and kick major scale ass for the entire year. I imagined celebrating 100 pounds lost sometime around the end of the summer, victoriously donating box after box after box of fat pants to the Goodwill. That did not happen. I hit a plateau on the scale and then I hit a plateau in my brain. I had to fight the urge to take my frustrations out on Twinkies. I won that fight (sorry about that whole bankruptcy thing, Hostess, but I’ve moved on). In fact, Little Debbie is probably getting her affairs in order as well…because I have successfully avoided Nutty Bars for a year. Take that, you little bitch!

2012 was the year I kicked my food demons in the ass. Looking back at it now, I can clearly see that was the lesson I was supposed to learn this year: finally getting control over my food demons. I feel good about it. I feel victorious. And sure, there are a lot of fatty haters out there who would say I’ve failed because I didn’t keep losing…and I don’t care about them. This is not their life and it’s not their process. In over 20 years of being obese I have ended every year weighing more than I did at the start of the year. I have never lost weight and kept it off. I will proudly stand on top of my plus sized mountain and proclaim victory for losing 45 pounds and not gaining it back. I’ve earned that right.

Another victory to celebrate is the fact that my outlook on food has significantly changed. Even when I’m famished, steering my car towards a drive-thru is not an option for me. I don’t even consider it. I’m done with fast food. There have been a few times when I’ve been out with the hubby and we’ve stopped for fast food because that’s what he wanted. He would catch me making a face every time and I’d just shake my head and explain that it doesn’t taste like I remember it. At all. Fast food tastes terrible to me now. And sugar? A little sugar goes a long way with me. We went out to dinner the other night and our waiter asked if we would like dessert. I immediately said “Oh, no thank you…I’m full!” After he left, hubby smiled at me and said “You’ve changed so much, babe. You used to always get dessert no matter what. I’m proud of you for how well you’ve done this year.” There’s nothing like someone you love being proud of you. Nothing.

He’s right, too: whenever we went out to dinner before I got on a healthier road, my heart would race just looking at the dessert menu. If the waiter brought the check and didn’t ask us if we’d like dessert, I was downright pissed.

“Are you trying to say that you think I’ve had enough dessert, Mr. Waiter? Is that it? Because I’ll tell you what: I haven’t! I’d like to pack a few more asses into these here fat pants, Mister, so get your skinny ass into that kitchen and bring me some mud pie!”

Yeah. I’ve changed.

So what about 2013? It’s nearly upon us. Is 2013 going to be the year that I celebrate 100 pounds lost? Oooh! Maybe I’ll lose 150!!! Or maybe I’ll even get to my entire goal of 219 pounds lost by next year! OMG yes! And I’ll do it all by drinking organic smoothies and eating nuts I find in the yard.

Okay, seriously. No.

My 2013 is going to be about moving more. Part of me cringes every time I say it, but it’s true. 2013 is going to be about me moving more. A lot more. Why am I cringing? Because I fucking hate exercise. I hate it!!! That’s something else 2012 taught me – but unlike all the positive results and wonderful lessons I learned in 2012, I know that my attitude towards exercise is unhealthy…so it’s time for me to do something about it. If you’d like a mental image of what that’s going to be like, imagine being shoved into a tiny cage with an angry badger while someone pokes said badger with a very sharp stick. There will be a lot of screaming and probably a lot of bleeding, but I’ll get through it. I will tame the badger.

When it comes to my goal of moving more, 2012 taught me that my treadmill is a wonderful convenience that gets boring if I don’t mix it up. I learned that doing dance and exercise games on our Playstation 3 makes me feel like the 9 year old little girl who didn’t measure up at the dance studio. It brings a lot of issues up for me that need to rest in peace, so I’m not likely to do that kind of exercise for a while. I love dancing, I just need less junk in my trunk when I get down with the funk. And I learned that the task of bringing exercise back into my life is going to require a lot of careful thought, some trial and error, and a high level of motivation from a lot of different sources. One of those sources is electronic gadgetry. 

In addition to being a handbag ho, I’m also a gadget geek and a bit of a gamer. So, in these last few days before 2013 is upon us, I’ve decided to buy myself a Fit Bit activity tracker. I’ve heard tons of good reviews from many of you here on the blog and on my Facebook fan page. Tomorrow is payday and I’m going for it.

Fitbit One Wireless Activity Plus Sleep Tracker, Black

Why Fit Bit? Well, I had a BodyBug once. I saw the contestants on the Biggest Loser using them (back when I used to watch) and I loved the idea of having real time data telling me whether I was moving enough in order to hit my calorie deficit each day. I actually bought one and I loved it. I miss that. What sucks about the BodyBug is that it comes with a monthly fee for their online service…and we don’t need another monthly expense in the Hot Mess Household. No way. Fit Bit doesn’t require a monthly fee.

If you’ve never heard of these gadgets before, I encourage you to get all Google-y and check it out. You strap these little gadgets to yourself (they’re small enough to conceal) and they tell you how much you’re moving and how well you’re doing in relation to the goals you’ve set for yourself. I’ll give you a real world example to compare this to: a shitty job I had a long time ago.

I had a boss who was a complete jackass…and every month he would call me to his office for our “one on one” meeting. Every month he would tell me that I didn’t hit my productivity goal. He would make suggestions like “work faster” or “don’t take a break every day”. You know…douchebag advice. He was a real piece of work. And every month I would work really hard, trying to get to my productivity goal, and every month I would fail.

Then he went off to do something else (I think they actually created a douche bag department and put him in charge) and I got a new boss. In our first meeting together, my new boss asked me how I was monitoring my productivity. I explained to him that I had no tools to do that. Douche bag boss would not allow us to even use the printer that all the reports came off of, nor would he allow us access to print any…or even know what was available. New boss says to me, “Well, how are you supposed to hit a monthly productivity goal if you can’t tell how you’re doing during the month? Would it help you to have access to that information sooner so that you can make changes accordingly?”

Hell yes!

New boss gave me access to the reports, explained to me what kind of reports I could run, gave me some suggestions about what to look for, and set me loose. I hit my productivity goal well before the month was over. By the end of the year, I had increased my productivity so much that they didn’t hire a replacement for my co-worker when she transferred to another department.

The lesson here? Information and the right tools are more valuable than cigarettes in prison, peeps. The thing I loved most about my BodyBug (and hope to love about my Fit Bit) is that it will give me real time info so that I don’t have to wait to get on the scale to find out I wasn’t trying hard enough. If you’re still shaking your head at me, don’t worry…I’ll be blogging a lot about this over the next several weeks and you’ll get to see it in action. I promise.

Tomorrow we’re going to talk about another cool tool…one that I hope you’ll join me on. It’s free and I’m enjoying it so far. I have a Hot Mess Princess group all set up for us, which I’ll tell you all about in tomorrow’s post. Maybe if enough of us are having fun, I won’t be so grumpy about having to move below the waist.

I’ll be posting pics here and on my Facebook fan page as I go along.

See y’all tomorrow…



Don’t be a sheep

Just a note: at first, this is going to seem like a lot of whining about the mechanics of writing a blog and the politics of being married to a man who is occasionally right…but trust me, I have a point…and it’s a good one. You may proceed with reading about the amazing realization I had last night…

I started having one of my “famous meltdowns” last night. They usually start with me staring at the wall with a far off look in my eyes…and when hubby asks me what’s wrong, my usual reply is “I’m so overwhelmed….”  And then I launch into a near hysterical venting session in which he’s tasked with calming me down while successfully managing to not roll his eyes at any of the bat shit crazy crap that comes out of my yap. For the record, he (once again) talked me down off the mental ledge I had put myself on and all is well.

I’ve known married couples who were so alike they were scary, but that’s not the case with the hubs and I. We are polar opposites. I’m very talky, very animated, very silly and snarky…and always doing something. He’s very untalky (it’s a totally a word, trust me), very calm/almost dead, with a touch of sarcasm and is quite talented at the art of making an ass print in his chair. We compliment each other perfectly. He calms me down, I rev him up – unless there’s a crisis, then it’s reversed. For example, when our neighbor “Mr. Underpants” loaned his car to his elderly mother and she crashed it into hubby’s truck so hard that she pushed it through our garage door…I was the calm that kept hubby together. He even told me so when we went back inside after it was over. Then I got all excited because he was so sweet to say that…and was bouncing around and hugging him and being silly…and then he had to calm me down. What can I say…

Whenever I have an extended weekend looming close, my head fills with plans and I start to schedule every minute of every day so that I can feel like I truly accomplished something. My “to do” lists are a mile long. I have one for organizing the house and another for this blog. Last night, they were both freaking me out – but when the hubby asked me what was wrong I jumped into bloggy things first. See, I went to my first ever blogger’s conference last September and I came home with a list of things to do that was four pages long. Since then, I’ve been trying to get control over everything I’ve been told I should be doing and I just can’t seem to get a grip on it.

The blogger’s conference was hella fun, but there was quite a bit of it that was geared towards “Mommy bloggers” and crafting bloggers, coupon sites, and travel related blogs. All of those folks run their blogs for money. Only two of us were blogging our way through a huge weight loss goal – and I never even met the other weight loss blogger.

In fact, I sort of fell into this whole blogging thing ass-backwards. Sorry, asses-backwards. There are things that seasoned, professional bloggers know…like SEO and page ranking. They do HTML coding on their blogs, have editorial calendars for their content, and manage all their social media. They know how to read analytics reports that tell them how much traffic they’re getting. I can barely read my electric bill. Honestly, if it wasn’t for Matt the Webmaster Ninja, this blog would have a solid white background with black type on it and maybe a picture of my dogs…because that shit’s just cute. But now Matt has moved on and is no longer managing the HTML-analytical-hoogy-doogy crazy shit that keeps all this together…and I’m left feeling like a big fat muggle at Hogwart’s.

So there I was, venting frantically to the hubby about HTML and Facebook “likes” and editorial calendars when he has the balls to look right at me and say “Why do you need an editorial calendar? Stop treating your blog like it’s a business. You’re doing this for you.”

That moment when you’re passionately whining about something you know you’re absolutely 100% right about…and then someone pulls your entire argument out from under you and beats you on the head with it? Yeah…there it was.

I sat there for a minute, feeling my meltdown washing away and wondering what to do about it…kind of like the first time I took Ambien and I was torn between going to bed and eating all the dry soup mix in the pantry. It’s confusing and terrifying, but if you sit still long enough the right path becomes clear.

This all started from that blogger’s conference – which was a day well spent, to be sure – however, since then I’ve snapped back into the role of a brainless little sheep and that’s not who I want to be. Once I realized that, the light bulbs really started to go back on…and I think I terrified the hubs a little bit with the wide-eyed expression on my face.

“Are you okay or do you have to fart? I can’t tell…”

He’s charming, isn’t he?

I didn’t have to fart…I was having a major epiphany. I was thinking about the fact that I was 13 years old when my Mom put me on my first diet because The King said I was fat. It was the Scarsdale Diet, I remember…and back then, a healthy diet dinner consisted of a hamburger patty, a few slices of tomato, and a big plop of cottage cheese. Yep. Healthy, huh?

It launched me into a loop of dieting and binging that lasted over 20 years. Scarsdale, Atkins, South Beach, Yogurt, Milkshake diets. Phen Fen, Meridia, Prozac, 5-HTP…I tried everything. I ran with all the other sheep. Every time the diet industry announced another “solution” to my fat problem, I lined up with the rest of the sheep and handed over my money…and failed. Just like all the other sheep.


Let’s get jiggy with individuality!

When I finally decided I’d had enough of listening to people who were making money off of me and capitalizing on my failures, I realized that I had to stop being a sheep. I had to be diligent and spend some time on myself. I had to find out what really works for me long term…and then do it. That’s what this past year has been about: finding real, sustainable change that doesn’t come from a special diet, a magic pill, or surgery. The result? I’ve lost 45 pounds and kept it off for an entire year. I have never kept weight off for this long. Ever. This Princess is on the right track. Finally.

As much as it pains me to admit when he’s right during one of my meltdowns, the hubs was dead on this time. When he asked me why I needed an editorial calendar, I’m ashamed to say that my reply was “Because they said so…” At the blogger’s conference. They said I should have one and, because I have no real idea what I’m doing, I jumped into my sheep suit and ran with the other sheep…never thinking for a minute that editorial calendars make a lot of sense for the mommy and craft bloggers out there and not a lot of sense for me. I’m blogging about a very real, very personal experience. You can’t schedule that shit.

My point? The sheep mentality is dangerous. Don’t let other people make important decisions for you. Don’t follow any plan without examining every detail first and figuring out whether it actually works for YOU or not. And don’t let your husband know he’s right too much or there’ll be hell to pay. Trust me – every time I try to argue a point for the next few months, he’s going to resurrect that moment last night when I realized he was right. Bastard. In fact, as I was spewing out the “Oh my God, you’re right!” of it all last night and he sat there with a self-satisfied smile on his face he had another brilliant idea.

“You know what, babe? This is a blog post right here…what we’re talking about…what you’re realizing.”

Oh shut up already! (He says you’re welcome, by the way…for suggesting that I write about this.) I was tempted to post his cell phone number so that y’all could personally thank him…but I won’t. This time.

We are a perfect match. Total opposites, meant to be. He’s a keeper. Sure, he doesn’t understand that taking out the trash is a two step process…but that just means he’s not perfect.

Step one: take out the trash.
Step two: put a new bag in the fucking trash can…how hard is it!!!

I’m sorry, I was talking about the wonder of marriage and my amazing realization. Yes. Marriage is full of wonder. And also remember not to be a sheep. Finding your own way is the most rewarding thing you can do in the process of embarcing a healthier lifestyle. You only have to answer to yourself. And maybe your doctor. And possibly a spouse who gets a little too happy when you’re wrong and risks getting kicked in the man-snatch.

Perhaps I should put a protective cup in the hubby’s stocking this year. He might need it.

I think I’m being punked…

I meant to write a blog post about my big anniversary this past week…one that was chock full of the wordly wisdom I’ve earned over the past year…but that just didn’t happen.  Instead, I had to settle for proudly proclaiming the news on my Facebook fan page last Sunday:  it’s been a year since I gave up sugar.  Go, me!

When we had out of town visitors last week, I brought one of my all time weaknesses into the house:  Blue Bell ice cream.  It’s a southern thing, trust me.  After the pecan pie was served and the goodbyes were said, there was still ice cream in my freezer.  Talking to me.  Whispering to me at night.  I’ve been tempted a few times, but honestly I’ve really enjoyed seeing that container in my freezer every day…knowing that I haven’t indulged in it.  Feeling stronger every day I resist it.

The Gods of Christmas Fudge and Holiday Treats are not amused with my resolve.  Now I’m being tested.  Or punked.  I can’t decide which.

On any normal day, I can resist the occasional sugar temptation just fine – but the 7 Dwarfs of the Menstrual Apocalypse are on me.  I’m crampy, I’m bloated, I’m bitchy…and I’m vulnerable.  I know it’s hard to imagine that I don’t always have all my shit together (especially with a name like Hot Mess Princess), but I’m not perfect…and during the week when Mother Nature is dumping all her anger on me, anything can happen.

Today, my boss brought me a large box of chocolates as a Christmas gift.  Oh, wait…sorry.  I work in a corporate office.  It was a HOLIDAY gift.  (insert eye roll here).  Don’t get me started on the whole happy holidays thing.  Except this:  if you wish me a Happy Hanukkah, I will smile and say thank you.  I’m not Jewish.  I understand it for the sentiment that it is.  I’m not offended because I don’t celebrate Hanukkah. So, by all means, feel free to wish me a Merry Christmas because that’s the shit I celebrate!!!  And happy Festivus to you as well.

Anyway…the giant box o’ hell was meant as a thank you for all the work I’ve done during the hellish re-org my company has gone through and that’s exactly how I took it.  I’m grateful for the gesture.  This isn’t about complaining about someone giving me a gift.  This is just me wondering aloud to the universe…WTF!

Seriously!! Men, you may want to close your eyes and scroll down a few lines.  Fair warning.  I’m a fat girl who’s given up sugar and is on her period…and someone walks up and hands me a half pound box of chocolate???  Hey, universe!!!  Cut me some frigg’in slack!!!!

After my boss left I turned back to my computer and made a grumpy face for a few minutes.  I felt tempted.  I felt guilty.  You know…because I’m not a tall, leggy super model who can eat pizza rolls all day and still lose weight.  I carry a large burden on these pale freckled shoulders, my friends.

And then I felt it:  a part of me that I love dearly…and I never say shit like that, but this is part of the new me that’s grown over the past year.  It welled up inside me and flooded my head and my heart with 100% bad-ass determination.  I looked at that box of chocolates…and I smiled.  Kind of a cool, “bring it” Clint Eastwood smile.  And I knew.  I knew I wasn’t going to open that box for all the cramps in the universe. I knew it and I felt it.  Up yours, box o’ chocolates!  My inner badass was loose.  I love her!

Then I got home and found this on the porch:

The Anti-BadAss Fairy is knock’in at my door.













Swiss Fuck’in Colony.

My mother-in-law, bless her heart, sends us treats from Swiss Colony every year.  Two years ago I had lost some weight and asked her not to send me anything and, to her credit, she didn’t.  Of course, I gained it all back the following year and therefore didn’t give a shit when she went me a box of coconut petit fours and a huge tin of chocolate covered butter toffee last year.  In fact, making myself sick on that butter toffee was what prompted me to walk away from sugar for good.

I sort of assumed she would know not to send me anything this year, given the fact that she’s seen all the positive change going on here at Casa de Hot Mess.  It appears I was mistaken.  Four boxes:  two for hubby, two for me.  After facing down a box of chocolates today, I decided that I had the balls to open my boxes and see exactly what I was dealing with.  Coconut petit fours and coconut fudge.  (Are you sensing a theme?  Yeah…I love coconut.)

My first instinct was to open up both boxes and toss the goodies directly into the trash.  Yes, I know it’s wasteful – but I would rather immediately remove all temptation than risk what I have painstakingly earned over the past year.  Just the sight of those boxes sent me whirling into a flashback and I remembered vividly the absolute loss of control I had last year as I stood in my kitchen, eating chocolate covered butter toffee like potato chips.  One…after another…after another…until I was sick.  I never ever want to go back there.

And then I felt it again:  my inner badass rising up.  It swelled in my heart and filled me up…and suddenly those boxes were just boxes.  Fuck yeah.

These boxes can’t hurt me because the girl who stood in my kitchen a year ago is no longer calling the shots.  She’s been made weak and feeble by a year of healthy eating.  In fact, she’s almost gone.  I’d love to say she’s completely gone, but the little bitch still keeps me off the treadmill consistently.  For now.

These sugary treats can’t hurt me.  Only my behavior can hurt me.  A year ago, I would have already been halfway through the petit fours.  That’s no small thing.

I never say this, but I’m proud.  I’m proud of myself and all that I’ve done this year.  The results of all my hard work this year don’t show as much on the outside (or on the scale) as much as I would like, but I know that’s coming.  Today I’ve really connected with the fact that I have plenty to be thankful for and proud of.

Tonight I’ll go to sleep with a big fat smile on my face and a heart full of pride.  I have changed.  I continue to change.  I am a force to be reckoned with…and the growing pile of unopened temptation on my kitchen counter says so.  I’m going to let it sit there for a while.  My own tribute to my inner badass.  Alive, well, and growing stronger every day.

Thank you all for your amazing support this year.  I’m so glad you’re here.

Merry Christmas.  🙂


What I learned from the Biggest Loser

This post is the final in a trilogy of posts I’ve written about the experience I had auditioning for The Biggest Loser.  You can find the first post by clicking here and the second by clicking here.

There are precious few articles available for those seeking the reality behind the reality of the Biggest Loser. I went digging for information almost as soon as I got home from the audition in Dallas. What I did find, coupled with my own experience of those ridiculous 2 minutes, changed my outlook on the show forever.

Former contestants are not allowed to speak about their experiences on the show unless given express permission by NBC. They’re threatened with legal action if they do. (See this article from The Huffington Post for details.)  As such, it’s hard to find information.

Ryan Benson, the very first winner of Biggest Loser, gained back nearly all of his weight after the spotlight grew dim.  He was back above 300 pounds (his show weight was 330) and noticeably absent from the first reunion show.  He later admitted that he lost the weight on the show by fasting and dehydrating himself to  the point where he was urinating blood.  (See this article from the New York Times for details.)

Shortly after my own audition, I found this article in the Tampa Bay Times about a former contestant/Tampa Bay resident that just about broke my heart.  It also made me feel enormously grateful that all I did was laugh during my 2 minutes in front of the hipster doofus casting assistant.  While the before and after pictures are still highly motivating to me, I no longer watch the show.  I might look at the before and after shots on the news the next day, but I don’t even watch the season finale.

Requiring a contestant to promote drinking milk for the show, then making them spit it out after the shot is filmed because they’re not allowed to drink milk…that’s lying to the audience.  It’s either good for you or it’s not.  You either approve or you don’t.  You don’t suck up to advertisers and make your contestants shoot commercials for it…then make them spit it out as soon as they’re done.  That appalls me.

Even before I read the articles I’ve referenced here, I had grown tired of the manufactured drama of the Biggest Loser.  My fact finding mission really drove the final nail in the coffin for me.  Contestants losing their hair from lack of nutrition, working out 5 – 8 hours a day, eating nothing but asparagus for days before weigh in.  These things are not sustainable.  It’s not motivating to me when I know what’s really going on.

I always assumed that the trainers were there with the contestants every day, but they aren’t.  They’re present once a week and only for a limited time.  When the show first started, the trainers warned contestants against using pre-packaged diet foods to stay within their calorie limits…and now they’re selling their own line of the same crap.  Biggest Loser merchandise sales bring in millions and millions of dollars.

After 20+ years of struggling with food issues, I’ll tell you what really scares me:  fitness professionals who are selling something.  I wish I could get a kickback from all the diets, pills, cookbooks, and other diet & fitness related products I’ve purchased over the years.  I will never again lose track of the fact that the diet industry makes money off of fat people.  Not skinny people.  FAT PEOPLE.  I can smell a snake oil salesman a mile away.  No, thank you.  That’s why I’m determined to lose this weight myself without surgery, pills, shakes, or special diets.

That’s also why you don’t see automated banner ads on my site.  If I can’t control what goes on it, I’m not putting it on my site.  How can I preach a logical, healthy approach to weight loss and healthy living if I have ads on my site for surgery, pills, and special magic shakes.  I refuse to be part of the problem.

I really encourage you to read the articles I’ve referenced here and form your own opinions.  Motivation is a very individual thing.  If you’re motivated by the Biggest Loser, then I say go for it.  In these three posts, I’ve shared my experience and my feelings with you…and I thank you for reading.

2013 is just around the corner…assuming those crazy Mayans were wrong.  Let’s lose a few pounds in December so we can start the New Year with a bang.  Resolutions are for chumps.  🙂

(I totally couldn’t afford this, but how awesome would this be? I would burn so many calories while blogging…)