Sparkly & Slimming….a Weight Loss Blog

Samantha's journey to slim down, while remaining sparkly!

What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up?

on January 23, 2013

grow up

I watch a lot of weight-loss shows. Despite knowing how unrealistic it is I still watch Biggest Loser and Extreme Makeover etc. religiously. I’m a sucker for transformation stories. I’m a sucker for watching people change their lives. However, there is an alarming trend amongst weight loss success stories that I am fucking sick of – and I need to rant about!

92% of people who go on one of these weight-loss shows and lose weight go home and become…..a PERSONAL TRAINER! You can get certified online (no lie) in just a few hours. It infuriates me. Not just because losing weight doesn’t make you an expert in weight loss but because they have learned unrealistic habits – things like cutting everything but vegetables from you diet to dropping 11 pounds in 5 days by working out 9 hours a day. That is NOT real life. I’ve ranted about this before. Now set that aside and I will share what really grinds my gears about this….

Every time I hear a past contestant say they are pursuing a job as a trainer (or worse  –  a motivation speaker – gag!) I think to myself –

What did you want to be when you were little? What’s your PASSION? What dreams did you have before you gave up on yourself? What did you want to be when you were little? What are your passions? Now….why aren’t you pursuing those dreams??

I understand that once you’ve changed your life you want to share that with everyone and their Mom – but to me it seems like a cop out. Anyone who becomes obese has more going on inside them than just a love for food. I was a workaholic, overachiever who wanted to be perfect in any capacity she could – since she had failed at having a perfect body. I’m mostly over that now. I schedule workouts and usually stick to the schedule. I don’t turn to food for comfort from stress. I’ve made awesome strides; all while succeeding at a job I really enjoy doing. I didn’t give up on my career just because I was fat.

I also understand that some people were lost before they lost weight (no pun intended) or before they found the exercise that changed their lives. So, I don’t consider Zumba instructors or people who pursue their new-found passion for healthy cooking to be in this boat. It’s the personal trainer / motivational speaker schtick that kills me.

I took to Facebook to rant about this last night and my friend Sandy had a great point I wanted to share: You know why? Because these people lost weight in a way that makes health and fitness their entire 24/7 lives. They never learned how to fit it into a normal life. Therefore, if they have a job where they’re not working out at least 8 hours a day, they are gonna pack the poundage back on SO QUICK.

YUP – exactly. I have learned how to lose SLOW (unbelievably slow) and I’ve gained and lost again. I’m human. Humans fuck up. Humans have lives outside of weight-loss and counting calories and tracking calories burned. Humans are not machines. My brother used to tell me that dreams are what separated us from the animals (pretty sure it’s a move quote I’m hacking) and he’s right. So, what are you dreaming about? What can you not wait to do once you’ve conquered a hurdle like excess weight? I can’t wait to live a more active life than I have now. I can’t wait to have a family of my own so I can pass on healthy habits to my kids and I will do that while maintaining a career I’ve had since I was 21 in a field I am passionate about!

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6 responses to “What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up?

  1. Tracey says:

    Amen Sweet Sister! I won’t watch Biggest Loser because it makes me start to believe that I too can lose 8 pounds in a week healthily and that I should be working out 4 hours a day. Unrealistic. On the other hand, dogs definitely do dream! LOL!

  2. Jaylee says:

    I hear ya on the shtick! Food for thought, though…

    People change and grow and form new passions, sometimes out of a new change, sometimes randomly, sometimes out of necessity. I think that when these people finally get the help they needed and they succeed, they want to share that with others and feel like they could do a good job. I think that goes for any life change.

    Personal experience/observation: I had/have a lot of dreams and aspirations, but not motivation or direction. I was floundering in life (just so happened to be lucky enough to eventually find and marry the right man, but suffered through a 5 year long abusive relationship prior). I had a job that I was good at, but didn’t fulfill me. I dreamed about all the things I wanted to be…bellydance pro, designer, medical imaging tech, beautician, mother, gelateria owner, good sleeper, happy, thin, athletic… I was so overwhelmed, I gave up on myself before I could even begin. I would go down one path and find myself boxed in and it wouldn’t work. So I became a mom. Oh, the moment I watched that stick say “pregnant” my entire attitude changed. Everything was illuminated. I was happy. Check. I was sleeping (for a chronic insomniac, that was a feat). Check. I would be a momma. Check. But what about a career? I never thought of myself as a stay at home mom and even though I hated my job, I was so upset to leave it. I thought I was leaving myself behind. Finally, the baby was born, and I, as a new mother, was reborn as well. And I flourished. I love this life. And I find myself wanting to share it with everyone. Caregiver, or any career related to kids was never on my list of dreams, but all of a sudden, it makes sense. For now I am happy (and lucky) to be a stay at home mom. But eventually I want more for myself, and I find myself driven towards doula, and other maternity-related fields. I have seen this happen to many others who have experienced this life. I haven’t forgotten the other things I wanted to do, but they seem less do-able and less important. I have a better defined direction and know what I’m capable of now. I’m passionate about this, not just because I love my son and being his mother, but because I was thrust into this role and must live it to the fullest every moment of every day for the rest of my life. And I love it. Why not share it? Why not help others going through this change? I think those who have changed their lives due to incredible weight loss must feel similar.

    So my perspective, priorities, and capabilities have changed as a result of my major life change, and my dreams changed with it. It’s organic, this shift. I can totally see someone just trying to get something out of their cash cow (cashing in on their tv appearance by certifying as a trainer online is bogus), but on the flip side, perhaps they are driven towards this because this is really what was missing from their lives in the first place? We are all different, and you are so lucky to know what you want, and to be the strong woman you are for going after it. You have a great thing going for you, and I love seeing that you have a career that motivates you and fulfills you! It’s so important to have. It is important for everyone to wake up in the morning each day, knowing they are going to do something they are passionate about (even if its Monday and they don’t feel like getting out of bed to do it).

    • I completely respect your opinion and you know I adore you honey. I understand having career ADD or being unsure what you want to do until something finds you – but I really meant that towards people who left jobs they seemed happy at to pursue a career in something they had only done for 5 weeks. 5 weeks on “The Biggest Loser Ranch:” does not make you an expert. Jillian, Bob and Dolvett all went to school for this. They have certifications, they are studied and accredited. Those are the people who should be training – not a weight-loss wonder. Same goes for dance. How many bellydancers takes 6 classes, decide they are better than Rachel Brice and start teaching – only to have a student get injured or learn bad form? I seriously hurt my hip by studying under someone who was a 6-week wonder and lied about her dance education. 😦

  3. You’re so right! Oh my gosh. I’m just the same, I love watching The Biggest Loser (in all honesty there have been very few episodes I haven’t welled up while watching) but their intense regimes and massive weekly weightloss sometimes makes me sad when I step on the scale and I’ve only lost a pound! Which is ridiculous. But I agree with you on the career point for the most part; I happen to be a very career-driven person and it sounds like you are too, and losing weight isn’t gonna change what I’ve always wanted to do with my life. But some people just aren’t career-driven at all, and they’re looking for something they can feel passionate enough about to devote their lives to.

    Anyway, I’m a new reader and I just wanted to say SO MUCH CONGRATULATIONS on your huge weight loss so far 🙂 Keep going girl, you’ve done amazingly.

    • Thank you – and thanks for reading! 🙂

      I find myself frustrated with people who think that weight is the cause of all their problems, yes being fat held me back from doing things….but it doesn’t mean it dictated my life. Good luck on you journey – 12 or 82 who cares, so long as you keep trying!

  4. MOM says:

    BRAVO!!!!!RIGHT ON! And you my beautiful daughter will indeed have that and on so much more…………

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