NOTE: This post was originally published on my previous blog, The Healing Project.
I am a long-time fan of the reality show, “The Biggest Loser.” I’ve watched all but one of its nine seasons and I frequently find myself in tears as I watch this truly inspiring show. Last night, as I watched the penultimate episode of the ninth season, I was moved to write about my appreciation for this show I’ve come to love.
The four remaining contestants all went home for a month, where they trained to run a marathon while continuing to focus on losing weight to vie for the title of “The Biggest Loser” (and the accompanying quarter million dollar prize). Two of the contestants were still close to a hundred pounds overweight when they left the Biggest Loser Ranch. Yet, they all returned and finished the marathon! The final two marathon finishers ran across the finish line hand in hand, and I bawled like a baby while watching this touching moment.
Moved to Tears
Why was I brought to tears last night? Why am I brought to tears by this show virtually every week? Because “The Biggest Loser” exemplifies the power of the human spirit, the power we all have within us to overcome our greatest challenges and triumph over adversity. The shear fact that four individuals who were close to death’s door from the side effects of obesity only six months ago were able to finish a full marathon is inspiration at its best.
I have always been a champion of human change and an advocate of the sentiment that change is possible for all who seek it out. Here were four people who had veered extremely far off the path of health and well-being. I’m sure there were many people who knew them who had written them off as “lost causes.” It wouldn’t have been too much of a stretch to write off 31 year-old Michael, who tipped the scales at 526 pounds at the age of 31. Likewise, who would have thought that 27 year-old Ashley, who smoked and drank heavily and weighed in at 374 pounds, would have turned her life around? Yet, both of them did, as did their co-finalists Koli and Daris.
Lessons from “The Biggest Loser”
Why am I writing about “The Biggest Loser” on this blog? Well, some of you may feel that it’s too hard for you to change. After all, you’ve been the way you are for many years and you may feel too far gone to turn it around. You’re stuck in your ways and you feel little hope of becoming unstuck.
I know how that feels, as I’ve felt that way myself many times over the years. I may not be obese, but I’ve certainly had my share of struggles around weight and food, plus I’ve grappled with a number of other addictive issues in my life. Yet, as I watched those four formerly obese people cross the finish line after running a marathon, I was filled with hope and inspiration. If they can overcome their challenges, why can’t I? Why can’t all of us?
It may not be your goal to lose over a hundred pounds or run a marathon, but I’m guessing you have your own challenges that are equally as daunting. I know that when I think about overcoming my laundry list of health issues, I feel overwhelmed and discouraged. But if Michael, Ashley, Koli, and Daris can run a marathon, I can restore myself to full and vibrant health, as well as overcome the other challenges included in my healing project.
Be Inspired, Believe in Yourself!
Let yourselves be inspired! Believe in yourselves. There is hope for all of us to heal all of our ailments within and without. Let the chorus of “The Biggest Loser” theme song guide you…
“What have you done today to make you feel proud?”
Do one thing, however small, each day to inspire yourself, to move yourself forward toward your goals, and you will get there!