Thursday, February 26, 2009

shame on you, biggest loser.

There was once a time when I never thought I'd say this, but I'm a runner. I'm not fast, and hell, I'm not even very good but I am a runner. I won't be breaking world records anytime soon, but I love how I feel after a good run. Exhausted but buzzing with energy. Sore but ready to go another couple of miles. The girl who once declared "I'm just not built to be a runner" has now run approximately eight 5ks, three 5 milers, two 10kms one 1/2 marathon (not that I'm keeping track or anything), and will be running another 1/2 marathon in May.

Running isn't easy. Well, it's easy for some people, but it doesn't come naturally to me. I've fought for every mile that I've taught my body to run. There have been times, both during training and races, when all I've wanted was just to give up. Actually, there are times when stopping probably would have been easier than finishing. But every time my legs felt like cement I thought back to how I felt after ACL reconstructive surgery. It's awful when even walking to the bathroom is practically impossible and ridiculously painful. I will never let myself to feel that weak ever again if I can help it.

I have sacrificed (several) toenails, given up so many opportunities to sleep in, run in subzero and unnaturally hot temperatures, and spent countless hours icing various parts of my battered body. I consider each of these badges of honor and have earned every race finish - regardless of my time. So when I read articles like THIS, I can't help but get a little irrationally angry. Any of my friends can attest to the fact that I am a huge Biggest Loser fan. But I am extremely disappointed that they producers chose to deceive viewers last night and lead us to believe that Dane finished a marathon in 3:51. According to the article, around mile 17, he and his wife were picked up and taken to the finish line. Why not say that he ran a 1/2 marathon, or since he surpassed that, say what he actually did - which is run about 17 miles?

I understand that reality television isn't really reality, and I also know a lot of you are probably thinking, "Okay, who the hell cares?". Running 17 miles is absolutely nothing to scoff at. I just think that he accomplished something great, and it was manipulated to be something that it wasn't. I would never pretend that I'd completed a race that I did not, nor can I imagine that any other runners out there would.

So I apologize for the long, and probably boring rant. I just needed to get that out there. The fact of the matter is, as a devoted fan of The Biggest Loser, I am disappointed. But as a runner, I'm pretty damn pissed.

May 2008 - After I ran the Boston's Run to Remember 1/2 Marathon.
My entire body ached, but I'd never felt so proud of myself.


Anonymous said...

SERIOUSLY WTF biggest loser??? I mean, its bad enough that they set ridiculously high weight loss expectations for the "everyday" overweight people out there, but to LIE about accomplishments?? UGH!

Anonymous said...

As another runner, that is upsetting! I was shocked to see he could finish a marathon last night when I watched because that's tough crackers to pull off.... now I'm upset that it's not true! He was wearing a medal around his neck... I hope he gave it back because I don't want a medal unless I finished the race... Wow. Stupid Big Brother, that's upsetting!

Unknown said...

I'm glad I'm not the only one upset by this! I just think that it gives the message that anything less than a full marathon is an unworthy accomplishment, you know?