Monday, February 27, 2012


This marks the end of Week Seven and we still have very high participation. Of the remaining 30 people, 22 made the weigh-in, and 20 made the workout.

If you’ve been reading the articles over the last few weeks, you know they’ve been doing some pretty high intensity workouts, and I wanted to continue with that. This week we combined 60 second cardio intervals with 60 seconds on the Maxicam weight machines.

Group One started in the cardio area while Group Two started on the weight machines. They could use any piece of cardio equipment whether it was a treadmill, elliptical, recumbent bike, Schwinn Air Dyne, Stepper, or Rower.

After 60 seconds, they switched places and Group Two hit the cardio machines. After another minute, they switched again. The goal was to minimize the transition time and to get on a different cardio machine each time. On the weight machines, they moved through them in a circuit, hitting the next machine in line each time.

They did 10 rounds, 60 seconds cardio, 60 seconds weights, for a total of 20 minutes. It was probably 25 minutes if you count travel time between the machines, but as I said, they were moving quickly back and forth.

I told them to hold back a bit the first couple rounds to get completely warmed up. Then they cranked up the levels or speed in the cardio area. On the weights, the goal was to keep using the machine the entire 60 seconds, even if they had to lower the weight a couple of times.

This is the kind of workout that really starts adding up, and by the halfway point at the end of the fifth round, everyone was feeling it. To their credit, they kept pushing, and the last ten minutes were pretty tough.

Afterward, we talked about how to use the concept, and make up different workouts. I also gave them a few ideas from my own workout log during the last week:

• Run ¼ mile, Leg Press, Calf Raises, Leg Extension, and Leg Curls. 5x. (A leg workout).

• Ride the Schwinn Air Dyne for 5 minutes, and then row on the Concept 2 Rower for 5 minutes. 8x. (A cardio workout that can be scaled back both in minutes, and total rounds).

• Ride the Schwinn Air Dyne for 5 minutes, and then do 25 Pushups, 25 Body Squats, 25 Sit-ups, and 25 Hyper-extensions. 6x. (A total body workout that also has a lot of cardio. Modify it any way you need to).

• Run ½ mile, Row 1000 meters, Ride 1.5 miles on the Air Dyne. 6x. (This was a wicked cardio workout that uses a ton of muscle! Again, feel free to modify it for distance, or total workout time).

This week’s winner was Laken Pennington, who lost 2.5% of her body weight and 3.8 lbs. Sandra Soberg was second, losing 1.5% and 1.8 lbs. Jennifer Abernathy and Beverly Weger tied for third, both losing 1.4%, and 2.6 lbs and 2.4 lbs respectively.

As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me through Facebook at !

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


This marks the halfway point in the twelve week program. We started out with thirty two, and have lost two people to attrition. One never really showed up, and the other just moved away from the area.

Last week, 27 of the remaining 30 weighed in, and this week 24 made the weigh-in. Over the course of the program, half the group drops out for one reason or another, so we’re doing pretty well at this point.

You might recall that last time in Biggest Loser “14”, we had a much higher dropout rate than usual, so it’s good to see that was probably just a fluke. In fact, it’s looking like we might finish with well more than half the group!

Of the 15 groups we’ve done, I recall that groups five through eight seemed to set most of the weight loss records. The most pounds lost for a guy was 60 lbs, and we’ve had a couple people hit it. Since then, no one has been able to get close. The most lost for a gal was 43 lbs, and it’s been a long time since anyone has gotten close to that either.

Typically, we’ll see one or two people get to around 40 lbs or so, with a couple more in the 30’s. Usually, the bulk of the weight loss is around 15-20 lbs for most people. Remember, a pound a week is good, two pounds a week is great, and three or more pounds a week is fantastic—and hard to keep up.

The results you see on TV, while outstanding, aren’t anywhere close to typical. They live on a ranch, don’t have jobs, or kids to raise and transport in multiple directions. They also work out 6-8 hours a day. My goal is to get these people moving twice a day—for at least 20 minutes early, and then 45 minutes to an hour later in the day.

One thing that has really impressed me is the extent to which some people from the group have taken the Monday night workouts and set them up again on Wednesdays and sometimes even on Fridays too. They’re tough workouts once a week, much less repeating them. It will be interesting to see if they repeat this week’s workout!

(1) Burpees, (2) Pull-ups, (3) Leg/Knee Raises, (4) Kettle Bell Swings, (5) Body Squats, (6) Mountain Climbers. 25 seconds at each station and 5 seconds to move to the next station. Each round lasted three minutes with a 30 second rest break between rounds. Ten rounds total!

This week’s winner was Jodi Thierl, who lost 2.2% of her body weight and 3.4 lbs. Second place went to Mandi Stuck, who lost 1.8% and 2.2 lbs. Amy Church, Kit Kirby, and Debbie Eveland tied for third, all losing 1.4%, and 1.8 lbs, 2.8 lbs, and 1.8 lbs respectively. Laken Pennington and Greg Stuck tied for fourth, losing 1.2%, and 1.8 lbs and 2.2 lbs respectively.

As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me through Facebook at !

Friday, February 10, 2012


This week we set up another “Super Station” circuit in the mat room for the Biggest Losers. The goal was to not only give them a tough workout, but also teach them some more new exercises that they can then do on their own during the week.

As usual we had to divide them into several groups to accommodate everyone. Group One started with a straight bar with plates on it and a new movement: squats w/overhead press (thrusters). After a minute of thrusters, they then rotated to a minute of kettlebell swings, and then repeated both exercises.

Group Two started with pull-ups and burpees, two times through, for a minute each. Group Three started with tractor tire flips, rope flips, a rower, and a Schwinn Air Dyne. They did each exercise for a minute, while a fourth group used the treadmills and ellipticals in the cardio room.

After rotating through all the exercises, everyone moved on to the next area, and what a workout it was! By the end, they were sweaty, gassed, and had learned some new things to through into their regular workouts.

We also talked about making changes long-term. Lots of people get to the end of a program and lose some weight, but then for some reason, go back to their old ways. They start surrendering to poor food choices, and sometimes even quit moving altogether. It’s such a shame, after all that hard work.

Hopefully, it will be something they’ll be thinking about as they work through the rest of this twelve week program. To truly succeed, they’ll need to find a way to make the changes part of a new life style!

This week’s winner was Greg Stuck, who lost 2.3% of his body weight and 4.4 lbs. Leslie Shanks was second, losing 1.8% and 3.0 lbs, and Amy Church placed third, losing 1.3% and 1.6 lbs. Brad Adams, Dale Rasmussen and Karen Brown tied for fourth place, all losing 1.1% and 2.5 lbs, 2.8 lbs and 2.8 lbs respectively.

As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me through Facebook at !

Thursday, February 02, 2012


This week marked the end of the first month of training for the Biggest Losers. Four weeks ago, they took starting measurements of their Right & Left Arm, Chest, Stomach, Hips, Right & Left Thigh, and Right & Left Calf.

People burn fat differently, so this would help us see if they’d lost fat anywhere. After the weigh-in this week, they took measurements again so they could compare with the earlier readings from a month ago.

While most people didn’t have time to do all the math, one person was able to quickly calculate that they’d lost over 10 inches in just the four weeks! I should be able to give you more information about that next week when everybody reports back in.

I’m also going to encourage them to take another set of pictures from the front and side profiles like they did when they began Biggest Loser “15.” Sometimes it’s hard to tell your body is changing, especially if it’s not showing up on the scale. But actually measuring inches lost, and seeing a smaller you in a picture, can help keep you motivated over the long haul.

This is especially important as we start moving into the time when many people find it hard to keep going. So this group has passed two major milestones. The first was simply finishing Week One.

With all the discomfort as your body adjusts to a new workout routine, sometimes people just can’t deal with it. And with all the hassles that come trying to fit workouts into their daily schedule, it’s no surprise that many people just give up.

If we can get them through the first month, though, their odds of success go up dramatically. They’ve adapted to the scheduling issues, and their bodies are much stronger, so the workouts and recovery won’t be quite so hard for them.

This was pretty evident during the workout, which was their toughest yet. One of them said “we never push ourselves as hard as you push us.” That said, this time they all did much more work than they were able to do just four short weeks ago. Here’s what they did:

Wall Ball, Dumbbell Curls, Walking Pushups, Pull-ups, Leg Raises, Pullovers on a Ball, and Running the lines (wind sprints). 1 min rounds, 4 complete circuits (28 minutes total). Give it a try sometime.

As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me through Facebook at !