Biggest Loser Trainer Has Heart Attack

02 Mar

“Bob Haper had a heart attack, he was fit, why bother with getting fit, when it’s your time to go it’s your time to go.” Nothing infuriates me more and this is just one of the many comments out there on social media!! I am quite sure there is more to this story than we will ever know.

First of all google “Bob Harper and drug use” you will find he is the main affiliate in the drug use scandal on the show the Biggest Loser back in 2016, which however, we hear nothing about now. Can you say swept under the rug?! Um,,,, the contestants claim that they were given, “Adderall and ‘yellow jackets’ — pills that contain ephedra extract. Ephedra is used to promote weight loss and boost energy, and was banned by the FDA in 2004.” This taken from the New York Post article on the scandal that rocks the Biggest Loser. Click Here to read that article now. ****Ephedra extract will damage the heart.**** There is no doubt about it. Now I am not saying Bob Harper used diet pills but if he asked his clients to do this who knows what he would do for himself?! Continue reading…..

Now google “Jillian Michaels and drug use“. You get a little bit different side of the story.  It looks like she was accused of giving clients performance enhancing drugs at one time. However, please note that she eventually quit the show because she and the producers could not “find common ground.” I already knew I loved her training philosophy and methods. Granted we will never know the true details due to contract restrictions but the trainer in me reads through the lines. She has outright said one of the “winners” actually lost too much weight. I applaud her and again her methods of training.

Back to Bob….ugh the guy infuriates me. I remember one time Jillian was promoting the use of psychology to help her clients. Bob was so against that! Really Bob? 99.9% of people who are on that show or have excessive weight gain have psychological issues that need to be addressed in order to move forward. But go ahead and use your strategies!

I can almost guarantee the guy used some type(s) of drugs and supplements that worked against his heart disease. Let’s look at the “natural” supplements we fitness gurus use.

  • Pre-workouts and creatine supplements. Serious guy pre-workouts contain a ton of caffeine and creatine. Both are very bad for your heart and not natural in  the high doses you can get today. They also contain warnings on the packages stating that if you have heart conditions be sure to see your physician or do not use at all. Also note some of the OTC supplements are banned in NCAA  and professional sports…um……..FOR A REASON!!!

Now let’s look at two of many steroids/performance enhancing drugs that can be used to create the body of that fitness guru, Bob Harper.

  • Testosterone has been shown to enlarge muscles and the heart is a muscle. It can and does damage the heart. “Recent studies suggest a link between testosterone therapy and an increased risk in heart disease. … Currently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is investigating the risk of stroke, heart attack and death in men taking FDA-approved testosterone products.” Taken from Mayo-Clinic.com
  • Human Growth Hormone: Testifying before the U.S. House of Representatives Government Reform Committee on behalf of The Endocrine Society, Dr. Alan Rogol outlined the legitimate medical uses of HGH and the serious health consequences surrounding its abuse by athletes, celebrities, and those hoping to find a way to combat the effects of aging. Dr. Rogol stated, “At higher HGH dosages, it is possible to achieve levels similar to those found in the endocrine disease acromegaly, which is caused by too much growth hormone in the body. This condition can lead to severe muscle weakness and even heart disease.”

I don’t even need to address recreational drugs like cocaine which is used as a stimulant and is extremely addictive.

On a personal note, I am 51 years old, actually 2 months older than Bob, and have heart disease deep in my genetics. I have been a Certified Fitness Trainer since 2002. I was diagnosed with high blood pressure in 2008 and my cause was stress, but also genetic. Heart disease runs rampant in my family (father’s side has multiple instances). My father had quadruple bypass surgery in 1995. He has since turned his health around and keeps a close eye on his cardiovascular system. Because of this he has had no further issues and at 80 years old is fit as a fiddle.

As for me, I keep a close eye on my cardiovascular condition as anyone with that genetic predisposal should. There are so many great medications out there and my doctor and myself keep a close eye on my blood pressure and heart.

I have never been in better shape in my life and I am 51 years old!!! I know for a fact that you can control heart disease and keep it at bay with diet and exercise. I will debate that to the very end.

Did I mention that the show barely ever mentioned heart rate and cardio exercise? Um……hello?! this is so super important and everyone exercising should know you should never exceed 220bpm minus your age. But that is all over MY blog!

Cancer on the other hand is not easily combatted and a different genetic topic.

As for my debate and frustration with that show you can Click Here to read my blog posts about that show that go back as far as 2007 which was when this blog began. Hmmm, that’s 10 years!! Maybe I need to do an anniversary thing on my blog…..

Stay on topic Kathie….please know that I honestly believe there is more to this story than we will know. Do not view Bob as a fitness expert because he “looks” fit and “acts” like a personal trainer. He is in show business for a reason and to me, it is obvious. There are other factors to look at here.

Have a healthy day!

Biggest Loser is being Called Out…FINALLY

25 May

biggest loserI knew it was a matter of time but it had to happen. I see this all the time. The Biggest Loser really is a big loser!

I have said it for years…this show is bogus. My professional opinion has always taken that stance – see previous posts about the show, search them on my site. You will see.

There is no quick way to weight loss. If you lose weight too fast you will send your body into starvation mode and your body will store whatever you do eat, when you eat again, as fat! PERIOD! End of story.

It is now coming out that contestants were encouraged to take pills. “Adderall and ‘yellow jackets’ — pills that contain ephedra extract. Ephedra is used to promote weight loss and boost energy, and was banned by the FDA in 2004.” This taken from the New York Post article on the scandal that rocks the Biggest Loser today. Click Here to read that article now.

This does not surprise me one bit. I have seen it happen so many times and I see it happening today. Biggest Loser has been accused of having contestants gain more weight to be on the show, making them sweat it out, forcing them to train like athletes immediately after a sedentary lifestyle, forcing them on below 800 calorie per day diets, forcing them to throw up to lose weight, sweat it out, and now having them take diet pills. All of the above lead to a guarantee of weight gain when the previous mentioned methods are not maintained for life. And it is impossible to maintain those methods for life. IMPOSSIBLE! Not only are they impossible to maintain but they are also lead to a lifetime of poor health and psychological illnesses as well as eating disorders.

This is one of my biggest pet peeves!!

I watched my ex-husband go on an extremely low calorie diet to lose 150# back in 1998. He looked great, back then, but he gained it all back and then some. He still, to this day, yo-yo’s on his weight. And he never achieved the 150# weight loss again. He also has health issues, probably will for a lifetime.

One of his favorite ways to lose weight was he would drink a diet coke, eat a bag of pretzels but he wouldn’t eat the pretzels. He would spit the remnants back into the empty diet coke bottle so he could get the taste of food. Oh my, that was lovely. NOT!

I feel so sorry for those contestants on that show. I always knew something was not right about it. I promote health. I have studied under some of the finest personal trainers. I have been a certified fitness trainer for 13 years now. It only works when you do it the right way and let me add this, for the right reasons.

Repost from September 23, 2010 about Biggest Loser

24 May

PLEASE NOTE THIS IS A RE-POST FROM 2010….6 YEARS AGO!!! I AM ABOUT TO GO ON A RANT ABOUT THE BIGGEST LOSER AND I WANT YOU TO SEE MY THOUGHTS IN TIME…..6 YEARS AGO!!the-biggest-loser!

The Biggest Loser Premier was on the other night and I watched parts of it on my DVR yesterday and once again the show did not let me down in the crazy way they introduce fitness to severely overweight people!! Am I the only one who sees the danger in all this insanity? Please tell me!! Comments welcome.

I watch the show out of sheer interest to learn more about fitness which is my passion. And I truly love Jillian Michaels and think she is a great trainer. HOWEVER, the show lacks a true perspective on what is really at stake here and that is people’s lives. Ironic huh? Is it going to take someone dying for them to get this? Heck a gal almost did just that – and she did not make the show. “Lucky for her!” I say.

This season the show is all about “paying it forward” – so they say. The only thing I see them paying forward is leaving so many overweight people in the dust.  They went from city to city, picking 3 overweight people out of this huge crowd of people for the show. Then these 3 people  had to compete in a fitness challenge and only 2 people who won these competitions then got to be on the show. Hmmm – how is that paying it forward? I would think the most un-fit person would benefit most from being on the show but then again this show is called The Biggest Loser for a reason!!

I watched a couple of competitions in pain and agony as these poor people struggled!! And I fast forwarded through most of them because it was just too painful to watch.

But then there was one. And talk about painful, this one was agony!!! This poor girl was struggling to climb 500 steps and then started having an asthma attack. Oh but Jillian was there with her inhaler (*insert sarcasm here)! The poor girl then passed out. Paramedics were standing by. How convenient? And, get this, the competition continued!!! Yes it did!! The poor girl was back there dying – literally. And the two guys who were already going to win their way into the show still continued to climb the stairs, while the audience cheered. YES, The Biggest LOSER is in fact The Biggest LOSER!!

Mind you that poor girl had spilled her guts in the diary room on camera on national television about how she had been in an abusive relationship and how she had gotten into this condition in the first place. And now she was left behind – in a trail of dust. Is The Biggest Loser going to really help her? I doubt it. They did not pay it forward, they dropped the ball as far as I am concerned.

They do this in the name of health? Yeah right! I’m sorry but as a Certified Fitness Trainer I see the lack of help and concern for true fitness on this show. You simply cannot throw an unfit person into a gym and make them start working like an athlete after they have been sitting on the couch for years. You have to condition the body into fitness and slowly get the heart back into shape. You run the risk of heart attack right then and there. This show does not teach this concept and therefore, we have unfit people hitting the gym and pushing the limits in gyms all over America and having serious health issues, including heart attacks. I know CPR and we have to be certified in CPR for this very reason. But I tell you I really do not want to perform it!! Jillian and those trainers on that show have a slew of doctors standing by ready to jump on any condition that arises – I don’t.

Please take it slow when entering a fitness program. You can lose weight and it will drop off fast if you weigh a lot even if you start off slow.

If you like this article you will also like: Losing It with Jillian Michaels (this article tells you how to calculate your heart rate)%

The Biggest Loser is a Lost Cause

23 Sep

The Biggest Loser Premier was on the other night and I watched parts of it on my DVR yesterday and once again the show did not let me down in the crazy way they introduce fitness to severely overweight people!! Am I the only one who sees the danger in all this insanity? Please tell me!! Comments welcome.

I watch the show out of sheer interest to learn more about fitness which is my passion. And I truly love Jillian Michaels and think she is a great trainer. HOWEVER, the show lacks a true perspective on what is really at stake here and that is people’s lives. Ironic huh? Is it going to take someone dying for them to get this? Heck a gal almost did just that – and she did not make the show. “Lucky for her!” I say.

This season the show is all about “paying it forward” – so they say. The only thing I see them paying forward is leaving so many overweight people in the dust.  They went from city to city, picking 3 overweight people out of this huge crowd of people for the show. Then these 3 people  had to compete in a fitness challenge and only 2 people who won these competitions then got to be on the show. Hmmm – how is that paying it forward? I would think the most un-fit person would benefit most from being on the show but then again this show is called The Biggest Loser for a reason!!

I watched a couple of competitions in pain and agony as these poor people struggled!! And I fast forwarded through most of them because it was just too painful to watch.

But then there was one. And talk about painful, this one was agony!!! This poor girl was struggling to climb 500 steps and then started having an asthma attack. Oh but Jillian was there with her inhaler (*insert sarcasm here)! The poor girl then passed out. Paramedics were standing by. How convenient? And, get this, the competition continued!!! Yes it did!! The poor girl was back there dying – literally. And the two guys who were already going to win their way into the show still continued to climb the stairs, while the audience cheered. YES, The Biggest LOSER is in fact The Biggest LOSER!!

Mind you that poor girl had spilled her guts in the diary room on camera on national television about how she had been in an abusive relationship and how she had gotten into this condition in the first place. And now she was left behind – in a trail of dust. Is The Biggest Loser going to really help her? I doubt it. They did not pay it forward, they dropped the ball as far as I am concerned. 

They do this in the name of health? Yeah right! I’m sorry but as a Certified Fitness Trainer I see the lack of help and concern for true fitness on this show. You simply cannot throw an unfit person into a gym and make them start working like an athlete after they have been sitting on the couch for years. You have to condition the body into fitness and slowly get the heart back into shape. You run the risk of heart attack right then and there. This show does not teach this concept and therefore, we have unfit people hitting the gym and pushing the limits in gyms all over America and having serious health issues, including heart attacks. I know CPR and we have to be certified in CPR for this very reason. But I tell you I really do not want to perform it!! Jillian and those trainers on that show have a slew of doctors standing by ready to jump on any condition that arises – I don’t.

Please take it slow when entering a fitness program. You can lose weight and it will drop off fast if you weigh a lot even if you start off slow.

If you like this article you will also like: Losing It with Jillian Michaels (this article tells you how to calculate your heart rate)

5 Common Fat Loss Mistakes

17 Jun

mistakesI preach this stuff every single day! And it seems I cannot get this across enough to my clients. If there was one article on my website that I would rank Top 10 this would be one of them!! So here you go 5 common fat loss mistakes:

  1. Focusing on body weight instead of fat. If you want success, focus on fat, not weight. You may actually gain weight during a training program due to muscle growth. Muscle weighs more than fat. Remember, weight loss is not the issue, loss of body fat is. Use a more expansive check on your progress like body measurements, body fat percentage, or the easiest way checking how your clothes fit. My clients tend to gain weight during the first few weeks of workouts because they are gaining muscle mass. The scale is a better check during your later progress. This is where The Biggest Loser goes wrong too!
  2. Believing carbohydrates are a bad thing. You know the rave? The low carb diets and such.  But you must know – your body NEEDS carbs. Many important nutrients are found in carbohydrates. Carbohydrates provide energy. Low carb plans are simply a short term tool and should never be regarded as a long-range dietary approach. Read my blog post about Low Carb Diets.
  3. Ignorance of the enemy’s hiding places. One of the biggest problems in losing fat is failure to realize where the fat is coming from. There are a couple of primary sources – trans fats and sugars. Another enemy is sodium. Read nutrition labels thoroughly to determine precisely what’s in the food you are consuming.
  4. Failure to prepare ahead. One of the biggest traps in the war on fat is the time trap. When most people get rushed, they turn to fast food. Planning ahead will allow the foresight to prepare or purchase healthy food items that can be eaten on the run. Sign up for my email newsletter and get your Free Food Combo Guide now.
  5. A diet that is too restrictive. A tight diet leads to fat loss yes. But a regimen that is too rigid leads to too much temptation to break the diet. That in turn leads to binge on forbidden foods. Also I have noticed the body can  produce a withdrawal effect of certain foods. The result is typically a collapse in the entire plan. Use a variety in food choices, and occasional allowances of foods not on the plan, to ensure success in the long term.

What do you do to ensure fat loss success? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment. Happy Training!! Kathie 🙂

6 Things You Ought to Know About the Gym

07 Dec

Here are some things that you may or may not know about working out in the gym:

  1. Don’t rely on the calorie counter on the machine.The calorie counter on the machine is automatically set for a 200# male when you hit Quick Start on the equipment. And not everyone burns the same amount of calories when working out. Everyone has a different metabolism. The best way to know your actual calorie burn? Buy a calorie counter. You program in your statistics and therefore, it is more accurate. Yes, when you program your age and other numbers in the machine it will be closer but still not totally accurate. The good news? You more likely burn more calories than is stated on the machine! 🙂
  2. Do not watch others in the gym to see how it’s done. I have been a trainer for almost 10 years now and I can tell you for a fact that 90% of the people in the gym are doing their exercise wrong – for you. This statement ought to say, “To learn what NOT to do in the gym watch others!” Be careful out there! It is a dangerous world. Oh and shows like The Biggest Loser? OMG they are the world’s worst for exercise demonstration. They have great tips and ideas but please do not watch them and run to the gym and start working out like an athlete if you have been on the couch for the last 10 years or even for the last 3 weeks for that matter. To read my blog post on The Biggest Loser Click Here. To be on the safe side, use machines first. All machines in the gym have pictures on them demonstrating how the exercise is done. The pictures also show you what muscles are being used. It is a great idea to study the picture, practice the exercise, and make sure you feel the muscles being worked (the ones in the picture).
  3. Calculate your heart rate before you hit the gym. Everyone should know what their heart rate should be during their workout. I can tell you it should never get over 220 minus your age in beats per minute. And during your workout it should stay between 65-85% of that number to get adequate caloric burn or “heart work” as I like to say. To read all about heart rate Click Here to read my blog post on this now.
  4. Rest is just as important as working out.Some people start working out and think that they have to work out every single day for hours on end. This is NOT the way to perfect health. It is all about balance. What is good for you is individual. But on average, a good cardio workout would consist of 20-30 minutes of exercise 3-4 times per week. And add some strength training in there too. Everyone ought to include some strength training as good muscle tone is good for many reasons whether you are 15 or 90 years of age.
  5. Remember good eitiquette in the gym. This is often overlooked. Be sure you do not hang out on the equipment if others are waiting. It is probably best to not hang out on the equipment at all, you may not know if others are waiting. Do not stand around and talk to friends while you sit on a piece of equipment. And remember to re-stack your weights when you are finished!! If your momma forgot to teach you these manners I’m here to teach you now. It is so difficult for the ladies to have to unstack those 45# weights that these guys left on the leg press or bench press. That is just plain rude! Here’s a little side note/joke for you ladies. Next time you see a guy who has left the leg press full of weights stacked to the hilt on one of those machines, I want you to pay attention to his range of motion. Range of motion would be how far he actually brings the weight down to the chest and then pushes it all the way back up. Most likely that “macho man” will not be able to handle a big range of motion. This can also explain why he can’t re-stack all those weights too! Just speaking from experience of sights I have seen in the gym 😉
  6. It is ALL ABOUT POSTURE!! If I were to come up with a motto about my training this would be it. Fitness is all about posture! Period! Never ever lean on the equipment when doing your cardio. You are doing yourself a dis-service when you do this. Not only are you training your muscles wrong but you are putting your spine out of alignment and setting yourself up for injury. It looks LAZY to see people leaning on the equipment. Perhaps the settings are too high, maybe you need to try another piece of equipment, or maybe you need to just stop. Whatever the issue, be sure to stand up straight and focus on re-training good posture! To read my blog post on posture click here.

Happy Training, Kathie 🙂

5 Common Fat Loss Mistakes

18 Oct

I preach this stuff every single day! And it seems I cannot get this across enough to my clients. If there was one article on my website that I would rank Top 10 this would be one of them!! So here you go 5 common fat loss mistakes:

  1. Focusing on body weight instead of fat. If you want success, focus on fat, not weight. You may actually gain weight during a training program due to muscle growth. Muscle weighs more than fat. Remember, weight loss is not the issue, loss of body fat is. Use a more expansive check on your progress like body measurements, body fat percentage, or the easiest way checking how your clothes fit. My clients tend to gain weight during the first few weeks of workouts because they are gaining muscle mass. The scale is a better check during your later progress. This is where The Biggest Loser goes wrong too!
  2. Believing carbohydrates are a bad thing. You know the rave? The low carb diets and such.  But you must know – your body NEEDS carbs. Many important nutrients are found in carbohydrates. Carbohydrates provide energy. Low carb plans are simply a short term tool and should never be regarded as a long-range dietary approach. Read my blog post about Low Carb Diets.
  3. Ignorance of the enemy’s hiding places. One of the biggest problems in losing fat is failure to realize where the fat is coming from. There are a couple of primary sources – trans fats and sugars. Another enemy is sodium. Read nutrition labels thoroughly to determine precisely what’s in the food you are consuming.
  4. Failure to prepare ahead. One of the biggest traps in the war on fat is the time trap. When most people get rushed, they turn to fast food. Planning ahead will allow the foresight to prepare or purchase healthy food items that can be eaten on the run. Sign up for my email newsletter and get your Free Food Combo Guide now.
  5. A diet that is too restrictive. A tight diet leads to fat loss yes. But a regimen that is too rigid leads to too much temptation to break the diet. That in turn leads to binge on forbidden foods. Also I have noticed the body can  produce a withdrawal effect of certain foods. The result is typically a collapse in the entire plan. Use a variety in food choices, and occasional allowances of foods not on the plan, to ensure success in the long term.

What do you do to ensure fat loss success? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment. Happy Training!! Kathie 🙂

Losing It with Jillian Michaels a Must See With Cautions

10 Jun

Jillian Michaels the trainer on The Biggest Loser has a new Reality TV show out called Losing It. She goes into a family’s home for a week and totally transforms that family’s life. She basically life coaches them to a life of wellness and health. There have only been two shows out thus far and I can tell you they are absolutely fabulous! I love them and here ‘s why. Well there are some flaws and I will tell you about those here too.

I have been a trainer for about 8 years now and my undergrad degree is in Psychology. I can tell you that 95% of the population who is overweight has an underlying issue that is psychological. Heck 100% of the population has an underlying issue that is psychological – right? Anyhow, you tap into that issue and you tap into the resolution! Easier said than done. I use my psych degree every single day in my personal life as well as my fitness life. And the thing I love about Jillian is she uses psychology too. Her mom is a Psychologist. 😉

The show that was on this past Tuesday, June 8, 2010 was great! It was about a single mom of two children ages 12 and 10. The father/husband had died of a massive heart attack two years ago and the mom was on her way to join him if she was not careful. Thank goodness Jillian stepped in.

There is one thing about this particular episode that I want to note here. The daughter who was 12 was asked what her goal would be over the next 6 weeks before Jillian would be checking back in on the family. The girl was quick to say, “I will lose 20 pounds!” I was so very happy to hear Jillian say, “I don’t want kids thinking about weight loss. I just want you to think about being healthy.” I was so ecstatic to hear Jillian say this. This is so important! Children/Teens should never focus on their weight. Children/teens are growing and they could “grow into” their weight. But children need to be taught to focus on their health rather than their weight.

I can’t stress enough how important this concept is!! Kids hear their own parents talking about weight loss so they naturally think they need to focus on this as well. Remember this! Be careful parents!!

There is one thing I totally disagree with Jillian and the show producers on regarding this show as well as The Biggest Loser. They take the client into the gym and throw them on the treadmill within the first 15 minutes of working out with total disregard to heart rate and what they are doing to the client! In any fitness program you enter into you must take it slow. I never throw an unfit client on the treadmill and tell them to start running. That is a no-no! I mean I know CPR but I do not want to perform it.

The Biggest Loser and Losing It never mention calculating your heart rate and what that number should be and the number you need to keep it below to be SAFE! Safety is my priority and I do not see them teaching safety anywhere on these TV shows, except maybe in small print at the end. And who reads that?

It scares me because I think people will go try to work out like they see these guys doing on these TV shows because they saw the trainers pushing these clients to the limit. The novice person in the gym might hurt themself by doing what they think is okay from watching these shows. When  in actuality that limit looks like death to me. But what happens when these people push themselves and end up having a heart attack? Please don’t do that on my time! Like I said, I know CPR but I don’t want to perform it.

So what is safe? Well, for starters, NEVER get your heart rate over 220 minus your age in beats per minute. For example, if you are 30 years old, your heart rate should never get over (220-30=190) 190 beats per minute. And once it hits that number, or gets close to that to number, it is best to not just stop what you are doing too. It is best to take about two deep breaths among those short shallow breaths while you keep walking at a slower pace. This will bring your heart rate down quickly and enable you to continue your work out. If you just stop walking while your heart rate is that high you could encounter a dangerous condition called blood pooling which is a condition that could make you faint. That is why I say – keep walking and bring your heart rate down with just a couple of deep breaths. Also note that if you take too many deep breaths you could hyperventilate and pass out. See? There really are many things to take into consideration when doing cardiovascular exercise. And when your heart is not healthy like these clients you really run a risk!! Remember that!

There is a time and a place to push a client to the limit like Jillian does but that is not  your first 30 minutes in the gym after spending 20 years on the couch. I sure wish they would teach this on those shows and maybe they will. Hopefully, not after they really do major damage to people!

Okay so now that you know that important fact about working out I feel like watching this show is of great benefit to you! Jillian helps people and families just like I love doing! That is my favorite thing about my job – meeting all the different people and all the different circumstances. Training clients is a joy, life coaching is even more joyful. Watching the clients blossom is the greatest gift in the world – love it! My show, it would be called Loving It. Until next time, Kathie