If you were wondering why Jillian Michaels recently left The Biggest Loser, where she’d been a trainer for ten years, the answer may be surprisingly similar to the reason that you stopped watching the show — shit got too real.
Remember the winner from last season? That woman Rachel Frederickson who took her weight loss so incredibly seriously that she went from being clinically obese to teetering on the border of underweight, all in the same season? She won, of course, because that’s the whole point, right? Whoever loses the most, wins! It’s not about health and it’s not about happiness; it’s about pounds, and the more you lose, the better. Getting down to zero is really the dream.
— Kirstin Benson (@kirstinbenson) February 5, 2014
Anyway, after she dropped all that weight, watchers of the show suddenly got all indignant, shaming this woman for taking the premise of the show ‘too far’, as if there was such a thing. As if the show itself wasn’t pushing the boundary of health simply by getting fatter and fatter people for the start of each new season and pushing them to lose more and better and faster.
But luckily (or unluckily, depending on how you think about it), the show and its contestants finally pushed things so far that even Jillian, one of the trainers on it, was able to see what she’d become complicit in. As she told People:
“After Rachel, I had to take a hard look at my work. ’I realized that if I am the face of something, if I benefit from it, then I have to take responsibility for the good and the bad. I hadn’t worked with Rachel, but that’s no excuse. I felt ashamed, and I came to the conclusion that moving forward I need to be able to have an impact on the outcome of that I do.”
Basically, once she realized that NBC wasn’t going to do anything to prevent future contestants from going to the same extremes that Rachel did, she left.
There were other factors that went into it, such as Jillian being unhappy with the way her personality was presented on the show, but the bottom line was Jillian taking responsibility for her own choices and decisions, which is something she encourages contestants to do as well, so it’s good to see her doing it for herself. Golf claps all around, everyone!