If you’ve been watching the latest season of The Biggest Loser, you’ve probably become acquainted with contestant Nikki, a 25-year-old mum who she says she hasn’t stood naked in front of her partner in three years.
“I just hate my body and I hate the way I look. I’ve been with my partner for three years and he still hasn’t seen me naked,” she said. “My insecurities make him feel like I don’t love him.”
If you saw Nikki walking down the street, you probably wouldn’t look twice. To me, she looks like a normal girl. A common girl. One I see all the time. Let’s be clear, this isn’t an attack on Nikki and her appearance.
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Nikki weighs 78kg. When that piece of information became public knowledge, I felt a pang in my stomach. Because you see, I also weigh 78kg. And as much as I tried to fight it, immediately the comparisons began and the self-doubt sunk in.
The overriding question that I kept asking myself was: If I weigh the same as Nikki, does that also mean I need to go on a weight loss show?
I understand this season the show it ‘changing things up’. They’ve re-evaluated their format and they’re trying to introduce more relatable contestants. It’s focused more on a contestant’s total health transformation rather than the numbers on the scale.
“It’s about a total transformation from the inside out…mind body and spirit,” trainer Shannan Ponton told the show’s 16 contestants during the season’s premiere.
But somehow, I can’t shake the feeling that this new format only further reinforces the insecurities of those watching, particularly women. In the past, for many, the contestants on The Biggest Loser have been removed from us.
They haven’t been relatable, which led us to think, ‘that’s not me’ or ‘that will never be me’.