Thoughts on Heavy Premiering Tonight on A&E

Weight loss, obesity, resolutions, exercise, and healthy living – all words that are in the minds of countless people this time of year. Although I am not one to make resolutions, I set goals. One of these goals is to get back on track with healthy eating and drop pounds that I put on after my 3 year old was born.

A few years ago, I was intrigued by The Biggest Loser on NBC. I watched to see how the contestants worked out non-stop, drop massive amounts of weight, and made alliances with each other. WHAT? That’s right, rather than focusing on doing what they needed to be healthy, they played the game. This turned me off and I stopped watching after a bit.

Recently, I was asked by Lifetime Moms to preview a new show on A&E called Heavy. I told TechyDad about the opportunity and we were both intrigued to see how this reality show would revolve around weight loss. Here is a preview of the show from A&E:

More about “Heavy” on A&E:

Twenty-two individuals facing extreme life-threatening health consequences as a result of their obesity experience real life change in the new original series “Heavy,” premiering Monday, January 17 at 10/9c. The eleven episode one-hour series follows two participants per episode documenting their incredible transformations during a six month treatment program.

Unlike other weight loss series, “Heavy” is not a competition or stunt, but is rooted in the incredible real life day-to-day journeys of the participants during a lengthy treatment program. In order to most accurately document these multiple weight loss journeys over the course of six months and present them individually in one hour, A&E sought out two different production companies to undertake the lengthy and ambitious filming process. The result is a never-before-seen look at the unique struggles faced by dangerously obese individuals who must learn to live healthier lifestyles and understand the root of their food addictions. Through their day-to-day struggle and the voices of their loved ones, viewers will see first hand the pain and self-doubt associated with a debilitating weight problem.

Facts from the show:

  • 22 individuals participated in the program
  • Men and women ranged in ages from 20-59
  • Starting weights were between 240 and 630 pounds
  • Collectively the 22 members lost more than 2,440 pounds
  • Half of the participants shed over 30% of their weight during the time

My Thoughts:

After the kids went to bed, TechyDad and I decided to watch “Heavy” together. Neither of us knew too much about the show, so we were very open minded. The first thing that I noticed was how the show really shows you the lives the the participants before they start. We watched as Tom, a 37 year old who started at 5’9” and 638 pounds was barely able to walk a few steps. “Heavy” took us into his home, we saw the enablers in his life, the items he would binge on at a drive-through window, and the bed he would eat everything on. We also saw Jodi, a 37 year old wife and mother who started at 5’6” and 363 pounds. The show took us inside her house where her verbally abusive mother became what she called a “cancer” in her life and pushed her further from her husband and marriage.

What I really liked was the realistic feel of the show. Not only did we see Tom and Jodi struggle before, but we saw how their demons showed up when they went for the first month at a weight loss intervention facility. The program that they were involved in not only shows the participants how to incorporate safe movement into their previously sedentary lives, but worked with them in other areas. Medical doctors carefully watched over them. Therapists met with them to discuss what was making food an addiction and other factors that were causing stresses in their home lives. Finally, a dietician went with both of them to a grocery store to show them what food items to purchase for healthy eating.

I think “Heavy” does what no other weight loss reality show has done, it puts a human spin on the battle that obese and overweight individuals struggle with daily. Watching Tom and Jodi go from barely mobile to working out regularly and having success, could be motivation for individuals that watch and may have given up.

I know that I plan on watching the more to see the other members it this series. In fact, I plan on watching while walking in my living room with weights in my hands. I wonder how many steps I can put on my pedometer while I witness their weight loss journeys.


Disclosure: I am a Lifetime Mom affiliate. As a part of this, I was offered a screener DVD  of "Heavy" to view. No compensation was given and the opinions expressed in the review are my own.

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