Posts tagged ‘Television’

December 21, 2011

Gets Me Every Time

Okay, so I know I’ve written about this before, but I forgot what I’d planned to write about today. Better luck tomorrow.


In the meantime, here’s the thing: I love The Biggest Loser. I watch it on Hulu while I eat lunch if Jacob’s napping or dinner if John’s not home. The irony is not lost on me.


I don’t cry very much at books, movies, etc. I considered crying during Titanic. I guess The Notebook made me tear up (book and movie). Oh, don’t get me started on Where the Red Fern Grows. But every time a contestant on The Biggest Loser talks about his or her family, or sees his or her spouse or loved one after weeks away, I lose it. It’s like flipping a switch. I’m fine one second, and the next I’m totally blubbering.


I recognize that most “reality” TV is a lot of drama, and not an honest representation of real life. It is atypical to have twelve weeks—and three professional trainers—to get yourself healthy. But apparently, if you have the opportunity, it works.


What I loved about what I watched from this season was that it seems that more people came to the show ready to make a change. There was plenty of emotional breakthrough and enough struggle, for sure, but not a boatload of drama.


At the end of the day, it seems to me at least, this is a show about doing something positive for yourself, your family, and your community. It’s about being healthy inside and out and having a positive self-image—not because you’re skinny, but because you believe you’re worth it. And you can see it in their smiles and in the way so many of them point to the heavens in gratitude for their success.


There’s not a whole lot on TV that does that, and I’m grateful for a show that seems to be doing something right. And that gives me a good cry when I need it!

February 14, 2011

Confession Monday

I have a confession.


I watch The Biggest Loser.  Sometimes while eating frozen pizza and ice cream.  Other times while eating carrot sticks and yogurt.  But all the time, loving it.


You may recall that the first time I watched this show was the night before I realized I was pregnant with Jacob (that was one of the pizza occasions).  I’m not sure if it’s the roller coaster of hormonal changes over the last year or what, but I am so into this show.  I laugh, I cry, and on various levels, I relate.


Generally, I’m not a huge fan of reality TV.  I don’t like the elimination aspects, the pitting people against one another.  On the other hand, I do like the moments of creativity and invention, i.e. the dressmaking scenes in Project Runway or the cake decorating on Food Network Challenge.


What I like about The Biggest Loser, however, is much the same thing I love about marathons.  Well, my second favorite thing about marathons.  (People do not routinely get engaged on The Biggest Loser, which has been my experience with marathons.)



Back to the point.  What I appreciate about this show is that more often than not, the “contestants” don’t treat it as a game.  Their experience is about dedicated hard work and encouraging one another.  It’s about putting their all into an action that will make their lives better, and not just for themselves, but also for their families (there is LOTS of talk about family).  The people who move ahead are those who work the hardest and get the best results.  In short, they are the people who refuse to back down from their goals.  They are folks of all ages, with all different backgrounds, but one goal that unites them.


I greatly admire this determination and focus. And I think there’s a lesson to be learned here, which might be applied to one’s spiritual life or really any significant aspect of life wanting growth.


When someone isn’t putting a hundred and ten percent in, often another teammate will call him or her out on it, saying something like, “If you put all the effort into working out that you put into [making excuses, talking too much, whatever the case may be], you’d be making incredible progress.”


For me, this is a good reminder to constantly reflect on whether I’m spending my time on the things that really matter.  Am I using my energy in a way that’s going to achieve something worthwhile?


Often, the answer is “not quite.”  Watching this show is helping me to be more aware of myself and my 2011 resolutions—to be more charitable and more disciplined.  It’s a great example, too, of how just about anything in this world can help us to increase in holiness. It’s not just church-going and dedicated prayer time, but every moment and everything that crosses our paths that can bring us closer to God.


So that’s my confession today.  That, and I fully intend to eat something deliciously chocolaty for dessert tonight.

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