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Does the biggest loser make anyone else feel inadequate!?

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Old 01-09-2013, 12:28 AM   #46
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Editing is like magic! My boyfriend is an film editor and I am amazed at even the tiniest tricks he does to make a film or show. He can even slow down parts of the film to make things look more dramatic, cut from different parts of the show to pretend someone had a certain reaction, etc. Once you see what can be done editing or photoshop-wise, you realize everything is pretty much a lie, especially these reality shows (but I still watch them! LOL).
For sure. Beyond that - there are associate producers in every reality TV show that are right off camera essentially telling people what to say. Reality TV might not be scripted but it's pretty close. Then they edit so you see what they want you to see and how they want you to see it...
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:37 AM   #47
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"Im mad that Im not getting those kind of results even though Im not doing what it takes to get those results" and deep down they werent happy with their results. I personally think TBL triggers this kind of response in alot of people.
You may be right. The bottom line for me is that unless losing weight is your full time job, you're starting from an obese spot, you have a full time staff supporting your efforts and you're competing on national television for 100,000 you're not going to have similar results to biggest loser contestants. Not even close.
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Old 01-09-2013, 06:23 AM   #48
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I think what bugs me is the assumption that because these contestants are large they need some sort of softer kinder approach, that theyre somehow not capable of hard intense work and hard intense dieting because of their size cause thats whats coming across here. If any person of any size doesnt like the boot camp approach they are free to find another way of training. .
But people aren't protesting a lack of "soft" approach and this is NOT "boot camp" style training. There is a line between boot camp style training and hurling abuse at people, showing the world that it's okay to make people frequently vomit or leave them with ice packs over their joints every workout. I worked in a police department for almost 10 years and the academy was not even like that.

From a personal training perspective, there are a lot of things that would violate multiple guidelines that should be followed for health and safety. It is not right, IMO, to teach people that it is okay to hurt themselves and particularly that they deserve it because they have fat and lazy!
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:39 AM   #49
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I like the show but not the backstabbing of it. I feel like if I had the time to utterly dedicate months of my life to nothing but losing weight, I could lose like they do. But, I have commitments and a family that take precedence over me exercising for 8 hours a day.
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Old 01-09-2013, 09:38 AM   #50
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sacha boot camp isn't the Police Academy training, its more along the lines of Marine Corps/Army/Basic Training so theres the difference right there because the two are definitely run with different approaches. Im pretty sure that in real Boot Camp aka Military Boot camp your yelled at for a lot longer and much harder than on TBL and your really run into the ground much harder than in TBL and ya you wind up puking while your Drill Sarg is standing over you calling you a big baby and so on. And my point I think is that for some people the hard core boot camp approach is what they want and thats OK. Some people join the Army and some people dont and some people who join the Army dont finish Basic Training because the reality isnt what they thought it would be. Its the same with TBL, some want hardcore, some dont, and some think they do but really dont so they leave. We just get to watch the process. TBL runs a hardcore boot camp approach which some find abusive and dont want to do which is fine but others really like it its personal preference. To answer your other point, no one is being taught that its ok to be hurt because your fat and lazy. What happens is that in any intense training program people get injured regardless of size and sometimes that injury is related to inactivity regardless of the size of the person. You can have inactive regular sized people who start a boot camp program and get injured just as much as an inactive larger person size isnt the issue and no one says any injury is OK. In fact TBL takes better notice I think of injury cause they have the staff there to assess and manage it quickly rather than in real Boot Camp where the last thing you do is admit injury cause youll be turfed outta the Boot Camp right away. In real Boot Camps theres not much tolerance during a 3 month program for someone walking at their own pace because their throwing up when they exercise (like what you saw on TBL last episode) they just say OK your done come back again some time.

I just still think that if we personally dont want it we tend to criticize any program that does that and Im glad that regardless of size people can choose the type of program that they want.

John your totally right I cant compare my results to theres as its two different things -- one is full time professionally managed for specific results aka a job, and the other is on my own doing the best I can so it really is as you said earlier apples and oranges.

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Old 01-09-2013, 12:53 PM   #51
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Sorry, I thought you were referring to boot camp like personal trainers offered, not the actual army. I agree that is quite similar to army training. But I still (*personally*) find that shaming people who are already suffering shame is not an okay approach.

The people on the show are volunteers, but I find it abhorrent that someone would watch this and think it is okay to be treated like crap because you are fat. From a personal trainer point of view, it's not okay.
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:17 PM   #52
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sacha I totally see where your coming from too. I imagine as a personal trainer the program must be hard to watch when the training philosophy is so alien to what you believe and do. Thats an important point too cause TBL puts a certain slant on "boot camp" training programs and its true that you dont need to be yelled at/worked to the point of puking and so on in order to get a tough workout regardless of size. A super tough workout can be done with respect and with the person in mind. It sure isnt seen that way on alot of the TBL show and its hard to know if the respect and so on just isnt there or because its edited to not show it.
Hey everyone nominate me Ill totally go then give the REAL dirt on whats happening!

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Old 01-09-2013, 02:34 PM   #53
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sacha boot camp isn't the Police Academy training, its more along the lines of Marine Corps/Army/Basic Training so theres the difference right there because the two are definitely run with different approaches. Im pretty sure that in real Boot Camp aka Military Boot camp your yelled at for a lot longer and much harder than on TBL and your really run into the ground much harder than in TBL and ya you wind up puking while your Drill Sarg is standing over you calling you a big baby and so on.
Actually, probably not. That kind of bootcamp is no longer allowed in the military and drill sargeants who scream in a person's face and call them names actually now get in trouble for doing so.
At according to my brother who was career navy, and spent the last ten or more years in navy law enforcement. He actually taught some of the bootcamp and other military courses.

His own bootcamp was still pretty harsh, but that was 25 years ago, and even then he said it's "not like in the movies." He said only the complete f***-ups (his word) got screamed at. Sure they pushed you hard, but as for the screaming in your face and ridicule, not so much.

The worst experience he ever described, and the only one that involved any kind of ridicule or verbal abuse were

1. being screamed at was when he got a terrible blister on his foot during some of the drills and didn't report it until it had gotten pretty bad. He thought that if he'd said something he would be ridiculed for being weak, but instead he was screamed at for playing tough-guy and allowing an injury that could kill him in the field.

and

2. Being deliberately embarassed when he had to wear his civilian glasses because the screw had come out of his military issue glasses, glasses so ugly they were refered to as bc's (birth control glasses).

His drill instructor shouted at him "Colby, where are your bc's?" And he responded, "Sir, I need a screw." and the Drill Seargeant responded "Don't we all," and proceeding to tease him for several days about the incident - when he reported back the next day wearing his bc's the drill instructor said "Ah, Colby must have gotten his screw...."


By the time my brother was teaching the classes, he told us that the instructors could no longer even scream at the "f****-ups" anymore. The instructors would get in trouble if they were reported for screaming at or ridiculing the trainees. Some of the older instructors had a terrible time with this, because it was the way they had learned.

So if the military has stopped using verbal abuse and ridicule as a form of instruction, why is it a good idea for entertainment purposes? If the military protects their new recruits from serious injury, then how can TBL justify it in the name of entertainment.

My brother said that the reason the military had stopped using the verbal abuse is because they're told it doesn't work nearly as well as praise and encouragement. Yeah, they have to work hard, but it's not while being screamed at for being incompetent. And praise and encouragement also inspire the "lay-down-your-life" loyalty that ridicule and abuse never will.

Also the military is only working with men and women who are in excellent health. Even fallen arches (flat feet) or less than perfect hearing can get a person rejected from the military. They're not recruiting 500 lb, 50 year old men.

Comparing TBL to the military is just ridiculous, especially since the comparison isn't even to the current actual military, but to Hollywood's version of the military which may never have existed.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:22 PM   #54
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1. Your theorizing based on stories heard from a relative. Ive been there and done it personally.

2. Different strokes for different folks. I appreciate TBL for offering a certain type of "Boot Camp" training to those who choose to do it regardless of size.


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Old 01-09-2013, 03:46 PM   #55
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I do agree with Kaplods on this point.

My husband was in boot camp in 2000 and it wasn't anywhere like TBL. It wasn't easy of course but the level of insults/yelling wasn't even close. Everyone that I've talked to (many) regarding boot camp just felt they were being shaped and molded into someone more disciplined and it wasn't insulting or demeaning.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:52 PM   #56
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Been there done it personally fairly recently aka certainly not 25 years ago.
Your theorizing based on stories heard from a relative.

Only in part. Yes, I am trusting that my brother has no reason to lie to me about the military changing their written policies and actual practices in regard to screaming at, name-calling, and belittling recruits.


Not exclusively. I have a bachelor's and master's degree in psychology, with a focus on behavioral, cognitive, and developmental psychology, and a fair amount of study (though not emphasis) on social and group behavior, and from almost ten years working in law enforcement my self.


I know from my education and experience that ridicule and verbal abuse do not inspire positive behavior changes and loyalty. The military is also privy to that information, so they're as likely to use torture tactics as a general strategy. I was oversimplifying for the sake of brevity, but to be more specific, it can work in certain circumstances - and it is used in those certain circumstances, but it doesn't work well overall.


it would be insane for the military to continue using tactics that just aren't as effective as more modern practices.

I've worked in juvenile detention centers and as a probation officer, and the statistics and my experience bares out the fact that the authority figures who were the loudest, and most authoritarian initially produced more obedience - but only in the short term, and only while the authority figure is present. As soon as the authority figure leaves the person's field of vision, their behavior resverts to as bad or worse.

Firm limits, high expectations, trust-until-proven-untrustworty, and praise and acknowledgement work better in the long term, and results in behavior changes even when the authority figure is not present.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:57 PM   #57
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Im curious as to why you want to diminish what my personal experience was, and Im wonder why you in turn would suggest that what I experienced was a lie? Thats pretty inappropriate in my opinion cause your basically calling me a liar here.

I did it, lets talk more after you do it, then well swap pictures and war stories and be on even footing. You arent basing anything on what you experienced, but what your brother might have told you about his NAVY experience many years ago. Training is specific to the Branch hasnt your brother told you that?

No point even discussing this because having my DIRECT PERSONAL EXPERIENCE diminished is actually quite upsetting to me. I wore my uniform proudly I worked for my rank I lived the experience I put myself in direct harms way many a time on behalf of my country. I am proud to have served my country and my Boot Camp experiences are legitimate and valid and really DID happen. Im outta here.

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Old 01-09-2013, 04:10 PM   #58
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I don't think she was diminishing your experience or calling you a liar, she was providing insight into her knowledge and information on the subject at hand.

Also, a person does not have to experience every part of life to have an opinion on a subject. This is a discussion and we all have different viewpoints from our life experiences. From what I've been told with regards to military boot camp, your experience seems to be an exception and not the norm these days. I do not mean anything deeper or more than that.

You seem to be taking this extremely personal, which is fine, but it seems to be getting a little defensive. It is a television show, which to many seems to be harsh and an incorrect tactic to teach weight loss, others see it as inspirational. Reasons for each varies, which I find intriguing.

I'm not sure how it has evolved to this level of misunderstanding.
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:10 PM   #59
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Actually it does the opposite for me. I figure if those people have trainers, nutritionists, doctors, etc. watching their every move then I must be doing pretty good without any of that.
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:53 PM   #60
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I don't think she was diminishing your experience or calling you a liar, she was providing insight into her knowledge and information on the subject at hand.

This was exactly my intent.

misspixie, if you are interpreting my post as diminishing your experience and calling you a liar, then I will point out that you diminished my experience and called me a liar first.

Are you calling XLMuffnTop and her husband liars and diminishing her experience of her husband's and others experience in Boot Camp?

I'm not. I'm not even saying that the verbal abuse isn't and hasn't been a part of the military bootcamp experience - now or 25 years ago. Just that the military is moving away from these tactics, because they've learned that it doesn't work as well as other methods. This is consistent with my education and work experience in the various fields of psychology and law enforcement.

I understand why the military is moving away from these techniques, because I know from my education and experience in law enforcement and human behavior that it only works in a very limited number of circumstances, and that the effects tend to be temporary - and based on whether or not the authority figure is currently present. It all falls apart when the authority figure is absent. If people are doing what you say because you're shaking a stick at them (or worse) they'll stop as soon as you're out of sight.


My brother unfortunately learned that experience the hard way in the middle east when in his unit the chain of command broke down and even though he hadn't the rank to do so, he took charge of the situation. I don't know much about the situation other than that it was extremely horrific (resulting in severe physical and emotional damage to my brother, probably one of the main factors in his resulting PTSD and bodily injury). Because doing so saved lives, my brother was given an assortment of medals and recognition. However if it had ended differently he could have been court marshalled for breaking the chain of command. My brother has a lot of surviors' guilt from the incident, which is why he refuses to talk about it much. All we really know is that he took over the situation in which the rightful leader couldn't do the job and that he had to ignore bad orders from superior officers in order to do so. If many lives hadn't been saved, he would have been punished rather than rewarded.


None of that is relevant to a weight loss competition. Especially since the pool of applicants for the military is very different than for that of the military. The military doesn 't take 500 lb, 50 year old men with heart disease and diabetes and throw them into bootcamp.


Heck if you're a 6' tall 17 year old male, the military won't take you if you're under 140 lbs or over 190 lbs.

The military doesn't recruit old, out-of-shape, super morbidly obese, diabetic citizens. Try to even get into the military in great shape if you're over 35.

The military is a horrible comparision, even if bootcamp and hazing experiences were still every bit as abusive and brutal as they were 40 years ago.

You wouldn't put a 10 year old or a 60 year old through old-style military boot camp. The military doesn't ever put old, unfit folks through bootcamp. They don't even take young, healthy, reasonably fit but signicantly overweight individuals.

I've known at least half a dozen friends and family members who were medically discharged from the military because health problems so minor that they didn't appear during the routine physicals but only became apparent during boot camp. I came in contact with dozens more in my work as a probation officer (many of my probation clients were young men who were trying to get into the service either as a direct condition of their probation or to meet the employment conditions). One of the reasons bootcamp is so incredibly physically demanding and stressful (emotionally and physically) is to weed out the people who will be unfit mentally and physically for military service. They don't want problems revealing themselves during active service.


Almost all of the disqualifiers these folks experienced were inconsequential in comparison to those that many TBL contestants have been diagnosed with from the beginning. Conditions that even in a healthy-weight individual that would have precluded them from military service (let alone conditions that became apparent only in boot camp).

The military does not require a man with stress fractures in his feet to continue unadapted bootcamp or active duty.

If we're going to compare TBL to the extreme experience of military bootcamp (whether of today or decades past) let's compare it to the full experience and use the same criteria that the military uses for acceptance of people into the bootcamp in the first place.

The military doesn't take out-of-shape folks and make them fit. They take young, healthy, and already fit people and make them fitter.

It's not a fair comparison - and that's all I'm saying. What military boot camp is or isn't, isn't the issue in the least. None of the TBL contestants would ever be considred for military service for even a fraction of a second. So the comparison is completely ludicrous.
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