I never used to be a big Jillian Michael’s fan. Not that I didn’t like her, more that I just never thought of her beyond “that hardcore trainer chick on the Biggest Loser.” But after watching the most recent season of the Biggest Loser, and then beginning to listen to her podcasts, I’ve become a fan! I agree with most of the things she advocates-organic meats and dairy, therapy, avoiding HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) and GMO’s (genetically modified organisms), and find the way she explains things to be very relatable and current. She is also extremely well informed in her field, and-among other things-uses her influence to work with companies to reduce sugar, remove HFCS and artificial flavors and colors from products and generally push them in a positive, more wholesome direction.
So, needless to say, when I saw that she was coming to Phoenix on her Maximize Your Life tour, I was intrigued and knew I had to go. When I mentioned it to my boyfriend, he said “That’s great babe, I hope you and a friend can go see her.” Bahaha. Luckily, a friend of mine from Tucson loves her as well!
I love that the venue had booths set up for companies Jillian supports (Pop Chips! Yum!) and that they had created an event special offering granola bars so people had a healthy option instead of ordering popcorn and soda.
The show was broken up into two parts, with a 15-minute intermission in the middle. The first half was about diet and exercise and the “science” behind losing weight (ahem-calories in < calories out). Pretty basic stuff (for me) but she discusses how to read food labels, why organic meat and dairy is the way to go, and why HFCS is bad.
A few things that stuck out at me:
-Ingredients are listed on labels based on the amount in the product. So, if a product is 62% corn, 24 % peanuts, corn would be the first ingredient listed, peanuts would be the second, and so on. I’ve always known that, but to get around this, “sugar” is often broken down into five or six ingredients so that companies don’t have to list “sugar” as the first ingredient. Never realized that!
-Non-organic cows are given hormones to increase their milk production, which is unnatural and unhealthy and therefore leads to sores and infection (among other things) so they are then pumped full of antibiotics to fight these infections. You are whatever you eat, eats. If a cow eats corn and gets antibiotics and hormones, and you eat the cow, then you get the corn, the beef, the antibiotics, and the hormones. Ew.
-High fructose corn syrup is not the same as sugar-it is processed in the liver! Whereas table sugar and regular corn syrup are processed by every cell in your body, HFCS is only processed by the liver.
The second half of the show focuses on the mental aspect and the “why” of being overweight-overeating, psychological issues, fear of failing. She also shows a quick video about her childhood, growing up overweight, and how she got started in fitness. That was one of my favorite parts of the show because you realize that she actually understands what it’s like to be overweight, what it’s like to be bullied as a child, what it’s like to have a bad relationship with one of your parents, and that all of those things are ok and that the ability to rise above all of those things and more is within each of us. She discusses goals, and how to write out a plan of action, and I saw plenty of women in the audience with notebooks taking notes! And as someone with a background in martial arts, I loved learning that she got her start into fitness with martial arts just like I did
(can you see her? She’s so tiny!)
If Jillian is coming to a city near you, I would definitely recommend seeing her. It’s a great boost of motivation and has me much more focused on my goals for the remainder of the year! And last but not least-she’s pretty funny!! She had me cracking up for a good portion of the show!
If you could see anyone speak live, who would it be?