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Did The Biggest Loser Rachel Lose Too Much?

February 2014

Did Rachel Fredrickson lose too much?

Rachel Frederickson Biggest LoserPhoto Credit

Look at the before and after. Long face before, huge smile after.  If you want to know if it was too much, I’d ask her what she thinks because other than how she feels, it’s nobody else’s damn business.  Now I’m a picky fella, I’ll tell you that right up front.  Daddy don’t like the fat, but let’s look at this with a lot less emotion and a little more logic and objectivity, because there’s a lot of bellyaching out there about this.  One commenter on a news story went so far as to write, and I’m not kidding, “…And the Biggest Loser just went from uplifting and inspirational to terrifying and depressing.”  Now I’ve seen both depressing and terrifying and the photo above, with that smile, doesn’t show either (well, maybe the before photo).

Now, to answer the question honestly, yes she did lose a little bit too much, maybe five or ten pounds.  Of course, lest the idiots of the world who are all atwitter about this not know any better, A) she was competing for a $250,000 prize and B) she freaking won and C) *going too far the other way is quite normal at first – she will normalize out and gain a few back.

When I first picked up cycling I went from 171 pounds all the way down to 149 before I was able to figure out what the hell was going on, way too skinny for a 6′ tall guy.  The trick, and reason for the asterisk, is that Ms. Fredrickson was (as far as I can tell from reports) working with a trainer, a professional, who should have been able to arrest the weight loss before her BMI dropped below the low-end of normal (by only .5 by the way).  But that’s really the trick, isn’t it?

I’d be willing to bet my lunch that her trainer knew he had a stallion (she was a swimmer) and said, hey I can get you to the low-end of your healthy weight, but do you want to win for sure?  Let’s go a little farther and make sure you take the prize and we can bulk you back up after.  Is that too much of a stretch?  She ended up winning by just a few percentage points (Bobby was at 52.51% of his original weight, David lost 54.28% and Rachel came in at 59.62%).  Now, had Rachel stuck with what most people would call her normal body weight, about 115 pounds, she still would have won, but only by roughly 1.5% (55.77%).

Viewed in that context, dropping the extra ten makes perfect sense to me, and it’s a far cry from terrifying or depressing.

As has been suggested elsewhere, to avoid future occurences like this, a minimum BMI requirement would fix everything and will likely be implemented after this episode.  In the meantime, if you’re one of the poor folks who can’t sleep at night because of this, please A) relax on the melodrama and/or B) get some help, if this is the scariest thing in your life, you’re doing really well…  You need to work on that outlook on life a little bit.


  1. Daniel Weise says:

    You nailed it – she was in a weight loss competition and had to lose the extra to assure a win. I don’t fault her for that one bit. I just hope she can allow herself to go back to a more normal weight and not go too far back towards her starting point. Not to mention there is so much more to life than worrying about some stupid “reality” show.

  2. MikeW says:

    What I don’t like about this show is that is showcases extreme bottom lines rather than rewarding those who forge for themselves a sustainable, lifelong training life and intelligent self-training in eating, drinking, and sleeping.

    • bgddyjim says:

      I hear you, but I would like to humbly suggest that there is use in the show. I’ll respond shortly after my ride, done in eight minutes… 😉

      • MikeW says:

        Well, of course, here’s me, commenting on a show I don’t watch. Kind of begs the question, eh!

      • bgddyjim says:

        I don’t watch it either… I pay attention from a distance because I do like a lot of what the show stands for. Don’t sweat it brother, I got your meaning and you made a great point.

    • bgddyjim says:

      Okay, I’m done… Now, your assessment of the show is fantastic, far better to shoot for the lifelong lifestyle adjustment rather than the showy quick fix – I can’t agree more. I do, however, see value in the show… It showcases that even at 400 pounds, getting fit is possible, if you do the right things and put in the work (and admittedly, in the show’s case, have no day job and a crapload of help from trained pros). Just a thought brother.

      • MikeW says:

        To show what is possible so people catch belief, resolve, and own a life in motion, yes, all good. Agreed on that!

        I’d like to see them show how it is sustainably possible for life by following those who make it so. But that is not as sensational. Producers, directors, and marketing people have to grow up before they’ll make that the focus.

      • bgddyjim says:

        Agreed. It is unfortunate how things work like that…

      • MikeW says:

        I’ll simply have to watch the program instead of judge by news reports I’ve heard about the program. I think you were kind of alluding to that in your post in some ways too. Will make a note to do so. Been kind of anti-TV after ordering TV service specifically to watch the Broncos get picked off by sea birds on steroids. Took the box back after. Next olympics, we’ll pile in and go get another TV box.

  3. She looks very gaunt. I hope she returns to a normal weight after when she assumes a more normal life.

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