RANT: Tracy Anderson & The McDonald’s Experiment

“…next on the TODAY Show, can spinning class make you heavier?  According to celebrity trainer Tracy Anderson, it can…”

OH YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME.  Tracy Anderson.  That was all I needed to hear to send me over the edge.  She is something.  Furthermore, that is what I heard this morning coming from my TV.  Gah, ruined my coffee moment.

Don’t get me wrong, I rarely bash anyone publicly.  Actually, I’ve never bashed any particular person on this blog.  But when I feel strongly about something, then I state my opinion and try to stop any madness from spreading (such as Tracy Anderson theories).

To back up my rage, according to Tracy A, spinning will bulk up your thighs and essentially that will make you heavier.  (I have so many swear words formulating in my head about this ridiculousness).  ANYHOW.  A normal person looking to get a cardio session in with a spin class will not significantly increase their thigh muscle size and be noticeably heavier.  Bear in mind this is a trainer that won’t use more than 2-4 pound dumbbells — and she also claims you can get “long and lean” muscles.  That is also false.  You can make muscle bellies bigger or smaller but you cannot make them “longer” than what they are genetically built, due to the muscle origin and insertion point on your bones.  You’d have to make your bones longer too…….make that happen, Tracy Anderson.  When you do, perhaps I’d pay for one of your obnoxiously, invalidly promoted programs you create and sell.  Oh and don’t get me started on her 500 calorie per day diet.  I just can’t go there.

Moving on, let’s talk about another popular story that hit the headlines recently…The McDonalds Diet.  http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2014/01/06/mcdonalds-nutrition-fast-food-mcdonalds-menu/4339395/

The jist of this story is that a teacher decided to experiment with eating McDonald’s for every meal for three months…and he lost 37 pounds with improved blood work levels.  McDonald’s was likely very happy with this story.  But — here are the BUTS of this story:

  • This teacher was significantly overweight, so any discipline with his calorie intake and increase in activity would assist in weight loss. Improved lab readings (blood pressure, cholesterol, resting heart rate, etc) are also associated with this amount of weight loss.  Therefore:
  • He did start taking 45 minute walks daily, along with his McDonald’s diet.  This is a significant change in his daily activity level.
  • He ate no more than 2000 calories per day, all chosen items from the McDonalds menu for each meal.  Calorie restriction.
  • He did NOT choose from many of the less healthy options on the menu (double cheeseburgers, large fries etc).
  • Instead he ate grilled chicken sandwiches, a breakfast sandwich with orange juice, small fries once per day, salads and fruit/yogurt parfaits.
  • He will continue on this path for another three months and have his blood work and vital signs assessed again in March; the “internal workings” of his body may or may not show signs of decline from eating only fast food.  Time will tell.  Stay tuned!

Although the McDonald’s experiment is interesting, there were some standard parameters that many people are told to adhere to, in general, when trying to lose weight and become healthier: start to exercise and reducing calories to no more than 2000 per day.

I just want to be sure that no one is jumping on the McDonald’s diet without knowing the other facts to this story, (from what I have read).  It wasn’t JUST that he ate from this fast food restaurant.  There were definitely other restrictions and lifestyle changes that helped.

And Tracy Anderson.  Well, you know my opinion.  I have several fitness experts I highly respect and she is not one of them.  I would NOT recommend her to any of my blog followers.

If I have offended any of you, I apologize.  However, I’m looking to stimulate your thoughts and perspectives on some of these mainstream stories we see out there in regards to diet and exercise.  Let me know your opinion, as well!

Take Care,


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