Like a junkie getting a fix, after NO Biggest Loser for several weeks, I was really excited to come home on my break yesterday and watch Extreme Makeover Weight Loss with Chris Powell yesterday. Already I like him better than I did last year. He seems like a super nice guy. This week his client was Tony, a 49 year old divorced dad of 2 grown boys who’s working in the fast food industry helped him reach 398 pounds. Now, engaged to Leslie, we find Chris showing up as they taste cakes for their upcoming wedding. Without giving you every blow by blow, Leslie never really gets on board the way Tony does, and while he achieves his first goal of 100 pounds in 90 days, their relationship begins to unravel, which is a shame because the reward from Powell, was a paid for honeymoon. Sadly, also, Tony has a 28 year old son, Marcus, who was born with Cerebral Palsy and is hospitalized during this year of Tony’s transformation. This does, however, drive Tony to work harder. His goal is to lose 200 pounds in one year, which will be his 50th birthday. Tony confesses to Chris that he doesn’t think things with Leslie are going as he hoped and he ends up breaking the engagement and moving out. He has left his job because the fast food thing just wouldn’t work with the 200 pound weight loss goal. Tony finds himself jobless and homeless, sleeping in his car and trying to start a body guard business. Somehow, he still manages to lose weight and though he is often “MIA” he turns up for his 90 day weigh ins and manages to stay pretty focused on his goal. When he gets the news his son has passed away, he heads to Detroit and Chris surprises him and shows up at the service, where he meets Tony’s family…and his new girlfriend. Chris gives Tony an envelope, which is the money he would have spent on the honeymoon and Tony is so taken by his friendship, having NEVER had a man in his life he could count on. Tony also helps him get some professional security guard training. After 9 months, it’s always time to see the surgeon, hopefully having done well enough to have surgery to remove all the excess skin, and Tony finds himself eligible. When we see him at the finale, he is looking awesome. He weighs in at….drum roll, please…..194 (maybe even 192) pounds. Chris gives him a box and in it is a $50,000 gift card from Wal-Mart. Nice perk! We see him out on some security jobs, looking quite the part and then we see him propose to his girlfriend, placing a ring (you can get most everything at the Mart) on her finger as she accepts. Nice job, Tony! Your new life just begins at 50.
While I wish they showed us what these people eat during their one year transformation, I do love to see them workout. Tony showed that “eye of the tiger” fight in him from workout number 1. Even before, as they sprinted off to the gym. He never let a broken relationship, homelessness or joblessness sabotage his goal for himself, because he knew he was worth it! He made a comment that people should never say they can’t afford to eat healthy food, which impressed me, because I always think it is so unfair that unhealthy food is cheaper than the alternatives. Again, I would like to see what he did eat to accomplish this incredible goal.
As if this wasn’t enough of a fix, I also watched an episode of Dr. Oz with weight loss guru Dr. Joel Fuhrman, who specializes in nutrition based treatments for chronic disease and obesity. With him, several people who have also undergone huge transformations eating mostly vegan foods though he never used that word. He used the words “nutritional dense” and “health-promoting,” to describe the foods he recommends. The whole thing made so much sense to me! He believes that as we feed our bodies these nutritionally dense foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts and beans, our bodies become so healthy and energized, we naturally want to move more and eat more of these very foods. He recommends the BOM, berries, onions and mushrooms every day as well as beans. I have always been a fan of Dr. Fuhrman, and it was great to see this plan promoted. Some of his success stories came on to share their best tip for success and I am anxious to try a couple of the recipes. I promise to let you know what I think once I do.
While this entry is way too long already, I have to send a congratulatory shout out to Ellen for hitting the 20 pound weight loss mark. YOU LOOK AWESOME. And also a congrats to LeeAnn for completing 5 weeks of bootcamp…fabulous at 50! Way to go, ladies!