Thursday, September 30, 2010

Sometimes Simple is Best

A few weeks ago I happened upon the show “Thintervention with Jackie Warner.” My initial reaction was to change the channel as I slightly remember her having some sort of other show that I didn’t really care for. But MizFit has been mentioning her lately so I decided to sit through the show and see what it was all about. I ended up getting completely sucked in.  Lucky readers, because of this you now get a review!

As I watched I became intrigued by this show as it almost seemed like a kinder, gentler version of the Biggest Loser. By that I mean, these people are losing weight but not a quite the same pace as the Biggest Loser people do. The official description of the show explains why – they are not locked down anywhere:

In Thintervention, Warner of the Bravo series Work Out will do what she does best – kick butt and inspire drastic lifestyle changes for her overweight clients who are struggling to lose weight and get healthy for good. Warner will push them to their limit at her gym and inspire them with intense workouts at amazing locations. Not sent to a weight loss camp or facility, instead Warner works with them in their real lives surrounded by the everyday distractions and stresses of family and work, making the chances for long-term success greater. Progress will be checked through group therapy and daily weigh-ins. Warner will do whatever it takes to keep her clients on track - even if it means surprise ambushes at their homes, work or when out socializing. In typical Warner boot camp style, she will accept nothing less than full commitment to change and will confront those that do not show her they are sincere with their fitness goals.

This show has now become a show I tape (it’s on Mondays at 10 p.m. – way past my bedtime) and generally watch when I have a rain-induced treadmill running day. Since it’s a workout show it’s pretty motivational and keeps me interested enough that I’m not constantly thinking of when I can get off the dreadmill.

The contestants, participants whatever you want to call them are real characters. There’s a woman who loves to party and drink and shows up for the workouts hung over – a lot; there’s a guy who is gay and proud of it and is hilarious. This week when Jackie told him to unleash his inner warrior he said, “Inner Warrior.  Really?  I'd name mine Ethel.” (Usually when he comes on the screen I have to grab the handrails of the treadmill because I know I am going to be laughing uncontrollably.) There’s also one of the women from The Housewives of Orange County, a mom type, a young woman who won’t take responsibility for herself and is lazy, a diva type, and a straight guy (who seems disgusted with all of them). Like I said, a cast of characters!

I think I’m finding this show appealing because either I am one of those people, or I know those people. They’re not locked away somewhere, and while they are doing this thing with Jackie Warner, they are also having to deal with their real lives. Seriously, the Drinking Lady? If you go on the website and look at her food diary, right in there she’s got 2 Tequila & Lime, 3 Mimosas. I don’t know whether to laugh or be horrified.

Another reason I’m really enjoying this show is that Jackie genuinely seems to care about her participants and while she’s tough, she’s got a good balance of tough love and tenderness. Ultimately she’s making them responsible for their own actions. There is a weekly group session with a counselor just prior to their weigh-in and it is pretty remarkable the stuff that is coming out. I’m sure there’s a lot more that we aren’t seeing too.

This week the group had weighed in and the losses were not great for quite a few of them. Jackie points out that most of them are supposed to be eating 1300-1500 calories a day, most of them didn’t exercise prior, which is an additional 500 calories a day burn and that if they were really doing this they would probably be losing around 5 pounds a week!  Therefore it showed her that there was a lack of commitment to the journey. While I didn’t agree with everything that was being said, a statement made by the counselor struck me.  It was along the lines of:

“When you find yourself reaching for something that you know isn’t in your plan, why not just STOP, tell yourself NO, and then back away from it.”

Maybe this show should have been named Back to Basics because that’s really what seems to be about. Living the way we would teach our children to live: if it’s not right, back away. Back away from self destructive behavior:  one simple step that, if practiced, would have a powerful effect on the end result.


  1. I'm watching this show, too - and like you, was hesitant at first but I actually like it. That said, I'm behind a couple of episodes but I may hit my DVR today and catch up - the drinking woman cracks me up...she is not apologetic at all for how she lives her life - I think she made a deal with Jackie in ep. 1 or 2 to be able to have a couple of drinks per day (LOL).

    As for back to basics, I think in the last decade there have been so many substitutions for foods "on a diet? don't have this; have that chemical-laden product instead" that we are NOT used to telling ourselves no. What a concept! I love it (and I hate it, haha).

  2. I've heard about it but have never seen it. Sounds like something I might have to check out.
    Thanks for the review!

  3. I watched it one time. I don't like the name of the show. I liked her last show though that was more drama-filled and got very silly.

    Obviously it's not all that easy to back away from many things or I'd not be such a TV watcher. If it were easy to back away there'd be far fewer drug addicts, food addicts, gamblers, sex maniacs, pedophiles, junkfoodjunkies, internet addicts and people who post annoying comments like mine.

  4. Yay! Another show to check out! The regular programming is boring me to death on while on the treadmill.

  5. Thanks for the review I have not heard of this show before but it sounds interesting. I am glad that are also working on the emotional part not just losing weight. I think they need more of the inner work on the biggest loser because there is more to it than just dropping the pounds.

  6. I watched her last show sometimes. I was captivated by her take-charge attitude. I like the idea of working with people in real life. Not everyone can take a "weight loss sabbatical."

  7. I really do like it--yet every time I watch I wish she werent trying to be like Jillian.

    it may honestly be JWs personality--but it rings like a Jillian-impression to me some weeks.