Wow, I’m Shocked To Admit This…

But, I saw the season finale of Thintervention, with Jackie Warner and I have to say that despite all my bashing of weight loss shows on TV and my response to a reader’s questions last week about the show I actually think it’s not all that bad. In fact, I actually learned a thing or two about being a trainer and helping my clients lose weight.

Jackie seems really heartfelt and honest about wanting to help her clients succeed and she manages to help without any crazy yelling or fear tactics. She knows when to push and when to back away, which is really an art. Do I think she should put some clothes on? Yes. People struggling to lose weight don’t have to constantly be reminded that they don’t have her body. Still though, she does an awesome job and I envy it.

At the last weigh-in her clients looked like they had huge transformations, both physically, mentally, and emotionally, but they still looked healthy, rather than some fitness model ideal. All of them, including the very resistant Nikki did the hard work necessary to get to where they are and I love how Jackie reminded them that if they want it they can have it. It’s all in their power to achieve what they want.

Oh, and did you see Bryan’s transformation? He had to get over so many emotional hurdles, control his bingeing and hiding of food, and learn to have more confidence in himself. To say that he worked is an understatement, he radically changed his lifestyle. There is no mountain that is too high if you want to reach the top badly enough and he reached the top and then climbed another one!

I don’t think that they needed to get up on that scale for a last weigh-in in front of an audience, but unfortunately I guess it’s in the contract. Every single client was majorly successful, but what was most important was to see the emotional achievements they had by facing what was keeping them from losing weight in the first place. It wasn’t necessarily about the specific amount they lost, but it was about what that meant to them in terms of changing their life around and achieving what they thought was impossible.

I am majorly impressed with Jackie Warner and Thintervention and felt that it deserves me admitting that not all weight loss shows are the same. I still say, “don’t try this at home, kids”, it’s still television, but if you need some inspiration and want to see the dedication, drive, and work that it takes to succeed then definitely tune in. If they can do it you can do it too!

Weigh-in here: Did you watch the show? What do you think?

Wow, I'm Shocked To Admit This…

But, I saw the season finale of Thintervention, with Jackie Warner and I have to say that despite all my bashing of weight loss shows on TV and my response to a reader’s questions last week about the show I actually think it’s not all that bad. In fact, I actually learned a thing or two about being a trainer and helping my clients lose weight.

Jackie seems really heartfelt and honest about wanting to help her clients succeed and she manages to help without any crazy yelling or fear tactics. She knows when to push and when to back away, which is really an art. Do I think she should put some clothes on? Yes. People struggling to lose weight don’t have to constantly be reminded that they don’t have her body. Still though, she does an awesome job and I envy it.

At the last weigh-in her clients looked like they had huge transformations, both physically, mentally, and emotionally, but they still looked healthy, rather than some fitness model ideal. All of them, including the very resistant Nikki did the hard work necessary to get to where they are and I love how Jackie reminded them that if they want it they can have it. It’s all in their power to achieve what they want.

Oh, and did you see Bryan’s transformation? He had to get over so many emotional hurdles, control his bingeing and hiding of food, and learn to have more confidence in himself. To say that he worked is an understatement, he radically changed his lifestyle. There is no mountain that is too high if you want to reach the top badly enough and he reached the top and then climbed another one!

I don’t think that they needed to get up on that scale for a last weigh-in in front of an audience, but unfortunately I guess it’s in the contract. Every single client was majorly successful, but what was most important was to see the emotional achievements they had by facing what was keeping them from losing weight in the first place. It wasn’t necessarily about the specific amount they lost, but it was about what that meant to them in terms of changing their life around and achieving what they thought was impossible.

I am majorly impressed with Jackie Warner and Thintervention and felt that it deserves me admitting that not all weight loss shows are the same. I still say, “don’t try this at home, kids”, it’s still television, but if you need some inspiration and want to see the dedication, drive, and work that it takes to succeed then definitely tune in. If they can do it you can do it too!

Weigh-in here: Did you watch the show? What do you think?

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Lose Your Excuses

What’s the one thing getting in the way of your success? YOU.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=obdd31Q9PqA&feature=player_embedded]

There is no such thing as can’t, there’s only WON’T. And that’s what’s stopping you from seeing the results you want to see and truly changing your life. There’s never going to be the perfect time for you to get started and do the work that’s needed, so stop finding excuses for why you can’t do something and take control of your life. Wake up an hour earlier if you have to, put a band-aid on your blister, work your arms if you have shin-splints, and just stop the whining and complaining. No one is responsible for your life, so stop blaming other things and other people for why you’re failing. You’re failing because you’re not trying hard enough, and maybe you’re not trying hard enough, because you don’t want it badly enough. It’s a harsh reality, but it’s true.

It took me 10 years to get to where I am today, but I’ve never given up. And I know that it’s never over. It’s not that I’m perfect, it’s just a constant striving for success, and with each achievement there’s another one around the corner. There’s always more, because I want to be as far away from where I started as possible. I’ve seen clients completely turn their lives around by taking action and doing their homework, their workouts, and facing their harshest realities, even if it means facing their most intense anxieties and fears. No, it’s not easy, but it’s absolutely worth it, because in the end you’ll get what you want. And if you want it badly enough you’ll make it happen. NOTHING can stop you. Lose your excuses.

Focus on The Negative

The next time you’re working out try focusing on the “eccentric” or lengthening phase of the lift, which has been shown to help increase metabolism. I’ll explain more below…

When lifting weights there are two things that are happening: There’s a shortening of the muscle as you lift the weight and a lengthening as you lower the weight back down. Want to feel it in action? Place your left hand on your right bicep and do a bicep curl. Feel the muscle scrunching up as you flex your elbow and then feel it get longer as you lower your arm back down.

What you want to do is focus on that lengthening by lifting the weight within a 1 second count and then lowering it back down in a 3-5 second count. You will feel the muscle fatigue a bit quicker this way, because you’re really working against gravity, but it will definitely change things up a bit in your routine and help boost metabolism by up to 9% after the workout!

Just as a heads up, you will feel pretty sore the next day and maybe up to 48 hours after, but repeating a workout like this about a week later will keep the soreness at a minimum in the future.

Try it out this week and let me know how it feels.

Ask Dani – Thintervention Intervention

Ok, so I’m randomly flipping through channels and came across “Thintervention,” that show on Bravo — and thought of you. I remember you saying that you thought shows like that and “The Biggest Loser” weren’t all that great. And I was like, I wonder why not? Aren’t they inspiring obese people to change their lives? Aren’t they exposing the awful health consequences of being really fat? So I tuned in to Jackie Warner and all of her ab-fab glory to see what she had to say.

The theme for the episode I saw was “total muscle exhaustion” — pushing yourself until your muscles give out (as way overly-enthused Ms. Warner explained). So as I’m watching these obese people basically pass out on the treadmills, wheeze and gasp for air as they lift weights — I’m thinking, OK this can’t be good. Right? This looks awful (and painful). But then I’m like: Or, is this just how obese people have to lose weight? Is losing 20 lbs not just “a little easier” but actually an entirely different ballgame than losing 120lbs? And either way, is “muscle exhaustion” ever the way to go? Or is that more of a made-for-TV stunt?

So those are my questions (I know there are a lot). Basically — is this why you take issue with shows like “Thintervention”? It it worth watching to pick up tips, like muscle exhaustion, from these shows; or is it more like “don’t try this at home”?

Sincerely,
Not Ms. Warner

Hey Ms. Warner,

Awesome awesome and again, awesome question! You’re right, these shows do inspire people to lose weight and they give them that feeling of “hey, if they can do it, I can do it too”, but the thing to realize and to really drive home is that yes, you can lose weight, but it’s not going to be as glamorous as it is on TV. And the environments that they create on these shows are not real life. Take it from me, a personal trainer, my clients would probably find it pretty creepy if I randomly surprised them on their doorstep one day (which is what Ms. Warner did on one of her shows). Believe me, I would love to do that, it would make everything a lot easier for me if I could baby-sit my clients, but I don’t believe in extreme hand holding. I do believe in taking baby-steps though and in seeking the help of a personal trainer. But that trainer’s purpose is to guide and empower you, and to teach you the tools necessary to take charge of your own life, not follow your every waking move. If you want to lose weight and/or become healthier, and I mean REALLY, you will do it no matter what. Sure, everyone needs help from time to time, and losing weight is hard, but the more someone is doing the work for you the less likely it is that you’ll be able to maintain it on your own. The secret of success is that only you can make it happen and if you desperately want it then you will make it so.

With that being said though, I don’t find fault in everything that Thintervention is doing. I couldn’t find the episode that you were talking about, but I did find a different episode, and I’ll admit that I was ready to hate it, but actually found some good things hidden inside. She gets to the point and calls her clients out when they’re not trying hard enough, but she also lets them have some space by not forcing them to say what she wants to hear. I also like that she has a psychologist on hand, because you can’t really lose a significant amount of weight without facing some of the things that got you there in the first place. But, do I think that working till muscle failure is good thing or is it just a made-for-tv stunt? I think it can be a good thing to show you what muscle failure really feels like and to show you how far your mental strength can take you, BUT I don’t think it’s for every client. You have to remember that these shows have physicians and paramedics on hand in case something happens and they are in the hand of a professional. I would not tell someone to go into the gym and start following what Jackie says, because this workout is designed for the clients on the show, not you. There is no one-size-fit-all workout program, because we are all different in our abilities and fitness levels. Which is where the 20lb weight loss vs. 120lb weight loss comes in…

Both are difficult. An average sized woman who only needs to lose 20lb is going to lose weight slower than an obese woman who needs to lose 120lb, because relative to her size 20lb may be a lot. And for the obese woman she may take a lot of weight off quickly at first, but then it will start to slow down as her size starts to shrink. Added to that is the difficulty in which the obese woman might find working out to be. Walking a mile for the slightly overweight woman might feel difficult if she’s out of shape, but for the obese woman it is a triumph. And that’s why I’m on the fence about this show. When someone needs to lose that amount of weight I think it’s more important to make them feel successful at what they’re doing rather than have the possibility that they’ll feel defeated, because the workouts are too hard. Wheezing and almost passing out on a treadmill is not something that I would allow my clients to do. I would find activities that exhaust them, but are also doable.

A very long saga short: Take these shows with a grain of salt. If you find motivation from them then that’s fantastic, but don’t follow what they say, because you’re not Jackie or any of her clients.

Week 12 – 12 Weeks To A Stronger, Sexier, More Confident You

Ok guys, this is it – your last week of the beginners program! I want you to really notice how far you’ve come and how hard you’ve worked. The only way to make a change is to simply do it. No one else can do it but you. If you take anything away from this experience I want you to realize that you are so much stronger and capable of so much more than you realize. Your ability to power through these workouts is really just a metaphor for life. Know that anything you want is yours if you decide to put in the effort to make it happen. The strength that you’ve built from these workouts is of course physical, but actually, it’s 98% mental. Feel empowered by your ability to power through this and take that strength with you wherever you go. There is nothing that you can’t do. Congratulations!

This weeks playlist is put together with the idea that music is what moves you. When you let yourself go and allow yourself to just be part of the music a beautiful thing happens – you let go of your thoughts, your inhibitions, and all the filters that are telling you not to do or say something. Really connect your body with your mind and just let the music guide you.

The Workout:
Week 12

The Playlist:
- Warm-up
Harmonize (Spirit Catcher)
Rio Nero (Drum Nation)
Absolutely Africa (Saxomatto)
Esperanca (Danny Tenaglia)

- The Workout
Twelve (Aria)
Genesis (Cozzy D & Kid Dub Present D Dub)
School of Thought (Kevin Swain)
Winter (Aril Brikha)
Vertigo (The Oval Five Project)
Smoke (Trafik)
Circus (Trafik)

- Cardio
Tribal (Tanke)
Tribal (Aggregat)
Tribal (RMB) (*I was trying to find as many “Tribal” named songs as possible… I guess it ends here.)
Move Your Body (DJ Wope)
We Believe (Junior)
Love Nature (Hystera)
Gimme A Smile (Lost Tribe)
Robots (Kevin Swain)
Female (Santos)

- Cool Down
So Long (Sissy)

Well, there you have it, your 12 week beginner program. Just because this is the end of this program though doesn’t mean it’s the end of your working out. If you want to keep up your results you’ve gotta keep up your activity. If there’s anything else you’d like to see featured here, just drop me a line and let me know.