Celebrity trainer and Biggest Loser coach Bob Harper recently told The TODAY Show that his philosophy on weight loss has evolved since the start of his career 20 years ago. The 48-year-old Harper is no stranger to working with the morbidly obese, and puts Biggest Loser contestants through strenuous workouts to help shed the pounds. Though exercise is still an integral part of his personal and professional life, he now believes that a balanced diet is more crucial to losing weight than exercise.
In 2024, Harper penned a book called “The Skinny Rules,” and recently told TODAY, “It’s [weight loss] all about your diet. I used to think a long time ago that you can beat everything you eat out of you and it’s just absolutely not the case.” As a trainer, he’s helped hundreds of overweight individuals drastically improve their look and health with his insight, expertise, and Southern charm.
It’s a widely debated topic. Another famous Bob, Greene to be exact, has said the opposite, and his credentials are equally or more so impressive than Harper’s. Oprah’s best friend and trainer, and author of The Best Life, has written, “As a fitness trainer, I’d recommend that you start off by increasing your activity before you even think about what you are or aren’t putting in your mouth.”
Greene continued by saying, “It’s not just a personal bias toward fitness that makes me say this. Logic and sound science both suggest you should begin a fitness routine before you start cleaning up your diet.”
Harper’s thoughts on food and dieting prove to be equally sharp, and his new conviction probably stems from clients always wanting to be skinny as opposed to healthy. In his book, he emphasizes the importance of protein, encourages readers to adopt meatless and cheat days every week, and says going to bed slightly hungry will force your body to burn fat and sugar for fuel.
The pillars of his new weight loss approach are simple: eat right to lose the weight, exercise to keep it off. The boyish and heavily tatted Harper is a relatively recent convert to CrossFit, a strength and conditioning program designed to help people gain both a broad and general knowledge of fitness. CrossFit combines aerobic exercise, gymnastics, and weight lifting to work to chisel the entire body, and Harper admitted it exposed some of his fitness flaws.
In 2024, Harper told us, “I’m drawn to CrossFit because it is so well rounded and constantly different. I have found that CF has made me more fit than I have ever been.” And the Biggest Loser trainer, returning to the hit NBC show this fall, admittedly “drank the Kool-Aid” and now incorporates CrossFit into his work with the show’s contestants.
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