Monday, January 7, 2013

"Biggest Loser" Contestant Passes Out During First Workout

Jackson Carter of  "The BIggest Loser"
In the premiere episode of "The Biggest Loser" Season 14, Utah contestant Jackson Carter  passed out just a few minutes into his very first workout. The 21-year-old, 328-pound Layton resident was carried off the treadmill by a BL employee, and was mumbling incoherently before getting an oxygen mask.
I wouldn't call him a wimp, as several other contestants were kicked out of the gym by Jillian Michaels because they were unable to meet with her expectations, which seemed to be way unrealistic for severely overweight, out of shape people.

Yep, Jillian is back, and she now has two kids of her own. But motherhood has not made her a kinder, gentler trainer. Before the week was up, one of her team members left the ranch for good, and from what we saw, Jillian's belligerent badgering had a lot to do with it.

Jackson Carter's bio states that he's the first openly gay contestant on the show, and that he experienced bullying as a teen for being gay and for his weight. Bullying? You ain't seen nothing yet, with Jillian yelling and swearing and saying some pretty cruel things, until most of her team broke down in tears. It's a good thing that Jackson's primary trainer is Dolvett, who seems much more even-tempered.  Later during the week, Carter was shown throwing up during workouts, but then getting back to work, under Dolvett's approving gaze. It paid off, as he lost 22 pounds during the first weigh-in.

"I'd sure hate to be one of her kids," was my first thought as I saw typical Jillian-esque moments. But then, when she was working out with the three adolescents who are on the show this season, she suddenly seemed less tough and gruff, and more gracious with them.  She said she is taking a different approach with the kids. I wondered why  — aren't both groups people with feelings? Don't they both respond to positive reinforcement?

A lot of people admire Jillian's toughness. And yes, this is a show so there's supposed to be a lot of drama. But the injuries of past contestants are proof that the trainer isn't always right. People have gone home with torn calf muscles, hip fractures, plantar fascitis, etc. which means a long recovery time.  Isn't it better to build up strength and endurance a little more gradually so that you can keep working out over the long haul? But, then you don't get the dramatic drops of 15-20 pounds a week, and I guess that's what makes this show interesting.

But Jillian's tactics backfired when she badgered one of the players during a workout and kept telling her she should go home. The woman did, which left Jillian just four team members. When they ended up losing the weight-in, one of the bigger guys, TC, ended up being sent home because he had the lowest weight percentage lost. So now she only has three people to boss and bully! Lucky them.


Johanna said...

I'm sure that the producers will shake it up so she ends up with more people or she'll be history soon. They won't be able to win challenges or weigh ins the way the teams are weighted. :)

But, seriously, I was disappointed in her bullying that player to quit. I wish there were no eliminations the first week so that everyone had a chance to get in gear. Had this particular contestant been treated with a little patience, she might have progressed beyond the mental obstacle and had success. We'll never know now. Of course, we don't see everything that happens; but even Bob seemed surprised at Jillian's actions.

Valerie Phillips said...

Johanna, I totally agree! A little patience and understanding could have helped the contestant to stick it out. Even if she would have only stayed until the weigh-in, it might have saved TC's spot. It appears that Bob and Dolvett's workouts are just as tough as Jillian's, but their positive support seemed to work a lot better than Jillian's in-your-face put-downs. If you tell someone they are strong and capable of doing hard things, it seems they are more likely to start believing it and do it. If you nitpick everything they do and say they're all quitters, well, they will likely
prove you right.