Biggest Loser Australia 2012 Final and Little Goal + Little Goal + Little Goal = BIG Goal

In Which I Split Everything Down To Build Everything Up

Last night I watched the final of the Biggest Loser Australia 2012. It’s been an addiction watching this show for the past however many weeks since I started watching. I was flicking through the channels one lazy afternoon and somehow ended up watching it, never having watched it before (not even the UK version). A day or so later I noticed it was on again, this time in the evening. And again the next night. I made Sarah watch it too and then we series linked on Sky+.

We didn’t see the first 6 or so episodes, but once we started we watched them all from there on in. I was as addicted to the show as the contestants were to junk food before going into Camp Biggest Loser.

Starting with 16 contestants, they get split into 4 teams of 4 and assigned a trainer for each team.

Not allowed to say whose team I'd want to be on... (AHEMwhiteAHEM)

Not allowed to say whose team I’d want to be on… (AHEMwhiteAHEM)

And bloody hell there were some big people, but then some BIG transformations.

The trainers push them, and push them HARD. They each get given an eating plan and have challenges each week too. They can access the gym 24/7, but most of them didn’t take advantage until the last couple of episodes when the prize money of AUS $220’000 was in sight.

Most of the biggest weight lost was in the first week weigh in, due to the fact that the lazy fatties never did any exercise so it was a shock to their system. They then lost the weight bit by bit, over the following weeks. They were still losing 6-10lbs a week though, which is WAY more than people (experts) say if healthy for a normal person. (2-3lbs a week.)

Obviously there were a few who looked like they could do with re-applying for Biggest Loser 2013 (looking at you, Selena), but most of the contestants made a massive change to their appearance and lives.

"So Selena, how have you got on on the outsi... Oh."

“So Selena, how have you got on on the outsi… Oh.”

The winner – Margie – Originally weighed 350lbs (159kg). She was running a pizza shop (not sure if she sold any, or just ate them) but through hard work and eating better, shed a huge 161lbs (73kg) to weigh in at the final at 189lbs (86kg). She lost a massive 46% of her body weight in 16 weeks.


Margie: Before and After

Would this be feasible in real life, away from Camp Biggest Loser? No, of course not. When they’re in the camp they do nothing but train and exercise and do challenges and eat right (mostly) with no work/family/PS3 commitments like the rest of us. Is it a good way of losing weight? For the normal person, no. And I’m sure a few (if not most) of the contestants on these shows put the weight back on within a few months or a year due to going back into old habits. If I’d’ve been in Camp Biggest Loser for 16 weeks the first thing I’d do on the outside is order take away food.

Kasey Cheesman. Yup, Cheesman.

Kasey Cheesman. Yup, Cheesman.

But the fact is, everyone lost a lot of weight. The least anyone lost was 21% of his starting weight, and he’d been voted out after the second week so must’ve kept up with the lifestyle at home.

BMI categories go as follows: Healthy, Overweight, Obese (Class 1), Obese (Class 2), Obese (Class 3.) For the 16 contestants, these are the BMI category they fell in to before they started:

Healthy: 0
Overweight: 0
Obese Class 1: 0
Obese Class 2: 3
Obese Class 3: 13

And after the competition ended:

Healthy: 2
Overweight: 6
Obese Class 1: 3
Obese Class 2: 2
Obese Class 3: 3

Even the ones that are still in Class 2 or 3 are a lot closer to getting their BMI down than they were before. And all of them will have added years to their lives.

So what can you take away (pun intended) fro watching shows like these? (HA! Didn’t see this learning coming at ya did ya?!)

1. Make healthy food (and portion) choices.

2. Weigh yourself once a week, at the same time, weighing the same sort of clothes. This’ll give you enough time to notice a change.

3. Surround yourself with supportive people, and people who will tell you the truth.

4. Exercising regularly will lead to weight loss.

5. Do it bit by bit, not all at once. If you didn’t put the weight on over night or within a week, why would you expect to lose it in that short amount of time?

6. Keep track of what you’re eating, it makes it easier to see when and where you overeat.

7. If you have an off day, so what? Put it behind you.

8. Don’t quit.

9. Set goals.

10. I have no number 10.

So there you go. Do I know what I’m talking about? Not really. But I AM setting myself a goal. My next marathon is in 7 weeks and I need to lose about 14lbs to get down to a better racing weight. Instead of thinking ‘I need to lose a stone’ though, I’ve split it down into smaller goals.

1. Get to 14st 10lbs (206lbs)

2. Get to 14 1/2 stone (203lbs)

3. Get under 200lbs (14st 3lbs)

4. Get under 14st (195lbs)

Four little goals that added together get me to my main goal, without having the main goal seeming so far away. This way, I’m achieving something each week (or every other week) without losing focus (hopefully.)

Marathon Looming… (As in getting nearer, not making rugs or anything…)

In Which I Zip Up My Man Suit

It turns out that the marathon is closer than I thought. It’s been slowly creeping up on me like a slowly, creepy, marathony bastard.

I thought I had about 9 weeks until the York Marathon on 20th October, but I don’t. It’s eight weeks on Sunday.

Adding in a week for tapering, that gives me seven weeks left of training.

Bearing in mind I haven’t been following my training plan that I was supposed to be following, I decided I needed to sort out my training and up my game.

Looking at my averages for each week, I’m nowhere near doing the distances I should be. I was talking to someone on Twitter and they said to aim for 50 miles a week! I’m lucky if I do 15!

Barney – Marathon Advice

THAT is why I’m zipping up my man suit and getting it sorted. Instead of running home from work twice a week (3.5miles each time) or cycling to work and back twice a week (3.5mile each way, same distance as running. Why wouldn’t it be? Weirdo) I’m setting myself TARGETS.

I tried following a training plan through MyAsics and while it gave me a good idea of what to aim for each week, I didn’t stick to it. I work different days and shifts each week so it can be hard to follow a plan that says ‘do this on this day and that on that day’. It lets you move run days around but only so much. That’s why I’ve decided to plan out my running schedule on a week to week basis.

“But Marc!” You scream (because you aren’t anywhere near me) “How will you stick to it?”

“Ha!” I loudly laugh, spinning as I do so as I don’t know in which direction you are, “I already AM sticking to it!”

I’ve changed my bike route to work so instead of 3.5miles it’s now 5miles. I’ve changed the cycle home to 10miles instead of 3.5miles.

Instead of running home twice a week (7miles total) I’m now running TO work and back once a week (7miles) , and then running home a 10k route on the other day. (6.2 miles, so a total of 13.2miles instead of 7.)

I’m also upping my millage one a day off too to get in a long run. Before I was doing 3-5mile runs (I once did an 8) where as now I’ll be doing at least 10mile runs once a week, upping the distance a bit each week towards the marathon.

Before – Average Run Miles a Week: 12-15, Average Bike Miles a Week: 14. Total = 26-29

Last Week – Average Run Miles: 25, Average Bike Miles: 32. Total = 57. DOUBLE what I’d normally do.

That’s without a longer run or a long bike ride. And you know what? I feel a LOT better for it. I’m still getting in a rest day or two each week and don’t feel burnt out or anything. I can feel the difference in my legs already.

After all, October 20th will arrive whether I’ve trained properly or not. I’ll finish the marathon, whether I’ve trained properly or not. The only differences that training will achieve are:

1. It’ll hurt a lot less than last time.

2. I’ll get round the course a lot quicker than last time.

That’s more than enough motivation for me.


Ironman UK (Bolton) Spectator Re-Cap

In Which I Become A THREE TIME IRONMAN…………….. event spectator

3rd August

With Ironman Lanzarote not being enough of a challenge in May, Father In Law Tony had also entered Ironman UK. Two in three months.

Everyone went over to Bolton to check into the Premier Inn sometime on the Saturday afternoon. I was working until six, so made my own way there via Manchester and McDonalds. I thought everyone would’ve eaten by the time I got there, but they’d been waiting an hour for a table in the restaurant so Sarah text me pictures of the menu and I then text Sarah my food order. (Technology is MARVELOUS!)

Everyone was fed, I had a few beers, then it was off for an earlyish (not at all) night.

4th August – Ironman Day

We got up early. And I mean EARLY. When we watched Iron man Lanzarote the event began at 0700. That meant we got up around 0600 – 06:15 and had a short walk down to the beach to watch the swim start. For what ever reason, Ironman UK starts at 0600. And we were staying nowhere near the swim start. Luckily, the events organisers put on coaches for the athletes and supporters. The coach left at 0515. Ugh.

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Going In

The Ironman UK swim course is in a lake thing called Pennington Flash. It’s a two x1.2mile lap course, and the athletes have to start in the water. Before the gun goes, they have to tread water for 5-10minutes or so which must use some much needed energy. After the first lap, they have a run of about 80m before doing the second lap. Pretty much every athlete that ran out of the water slipped on the mats. Not very safe.

Coming Out

Coming Out

Tony came out of the water in just under 41minutes then got straight back in for his second lap. After we’d cheered him on, we moved up the course towards where the bike part would start. We got a good spectator spot and waited for him to run passed. We were also keeping an eye out for another family(ish) member. I think he’s my Wife’s cousins cousins husband. Or something… Anyway, while we were waiting for Tony, we heard “And coming out of the water, Martin Stoney!” and because that’s my wifes cousins cousins husbands name, we looked out for him. I think he’s done marathons and such, but this was his first Ironman event. A minute or so passed, and then he ran passed looking strong.



Not too long after, we saw Tony running up towards us and he stopped for a quick chat before running up to Transition 1 (where they get changed) and then he was off on his bike.

Sarah Helping Get The Wetsuit Off

Sarah Helping Get The Wetsuit Off

It’d be AGES until we saw him again due to the course set up. We got on the free bus back to the hotel, and we all had breakfast. (Which was our Transition 1.)

photo (9)

After about an hour we made our way to the train station and got on a train (obviously) to the centre of Bolton. Only took about 10minutes and so that wasn’t enough time for the conductor to come round and sell us a ticket. When we got off they had a couple of guards checking tickets so we went up the counter next to them where you could buy a ticket for the journey you’ve already done. I think if they’re too lazy to come round with tickets, it should be free. But it’s not.

When we were waiting a scruffy lad tried to run down to the platform but Guard 1 stopped him because he didn’t have a ticket.

Guard 1: “Tickets please.”
Bloke: “My f***ing trains there, I don’t have time for an f***ing ticket.”
Guard 1: “You can’t go passed without a ticket.”
Bloke: “That’s f***ing stoopid. My f***ing trains there.”
Guard 1: “You still need a ticket I’m afraid.”
Bloke: “F***ing F***ing F***ing F***ing.”
Guard 1: “The ticket counter is over there.” (Bloke goes to ticket counter, f***ing all the way)
Guard 2: “He could use the machine, no ones using it.”
Guard 1: “He’ll be too stupid to use a machine.”

The bike course for Ironman UK starts where the swim finishes, but ends about 6 mile away from the centre of Bolton. This meant that we could make sure we were in plenty of time to see Tony and Martin on their run. The bike course is a point to point 14 mile ride, before then going into a three lap route that starts at Adlington in Lancashire and takes in quite a few hills and villages. It then finishes at a high school where Transition 2 is waiting, after a total of 112 miles riden on the bike.

Our Transition 2 was the pub.

Finishers Chute

Finishers Chute

There were plenty of splits on the bike course so it made it easy for us to track Tony and Martins progress on the Irontrac App. (Lanzarote only had one split so had to be more vigilant.) Plenty of splits on the run course too, which makes it much easier as a spectator. Looking at the App, we saw that Tony had finished the bike section in 6:44 and Martin in 7:11. The Marathon for Ironman UK is a six mile run into central Bolton, followed by a three lap course for the other 20 miles. The first split the app tracks is at 10k, but then they’re every 1-3k or so. We thought that the first split was near where we were stood, but it wasn’t. We were expecting them to run passed us at anytime, but it turns out that we were closer to the 4th split, so didn’t see them for almost an hour later than we expected. And it poured down.

photo (5)

Before long though, we saw Tony running up towards us and he stopped for a few words. Then he was off again. With part of the run being 3 laps you see the person you’re cheering on six times. (With the last time being the finish.) We figured out which splits were which and made sure we were at the road side in time to cheer. (Inbetween was a combination of McDonalds and a pub. Or two.)

When they were on their final laps we made our way to the finishers chute and got a place in the stands. Again, using the Irontrac app, we had a good idea of when they’d be finishing. Martin came passed first to finish in a time of 14hours 17minutes. As we were waiting for Tony, the big screen broke and didn’t get fixed until after he’d crossed the line which was a shame as you could’ve got a brilliant picture of him finishing. Maybe next time.

Tony came down the chute and we all cheered. Susan had made her way to the front of the barriers and Tony stopped to give her a hug, before going over the finishers line in a time of 14hours 24minutes, (almost half an hour quicker than Lanzarote) and becoming a Triple Ironman.

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5th August

After breakfast we went and had a look at the Ironman Expo. It was a LOT better than Lanzarote, with loads on sale. I bought myself an Ironman training book as motivation. Hmmmm……

Tonys Medals

Tonys Medals

When we got home we went and got this:

Tiger Lily

Tiger Lily

Our new kitten. Indy seems to be tolerating her so far, so that’s good.