Chris Powell, host and trainer of the new Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition is 5’8 ¾ and says he was bullied a lot as a kid growing up. His parents bought him a weight set when he was 14. After some trepidation he began using it.
“And there was no turning back. That has fueled me ever since,” says Powell.
He got a degree in physiology and biomechanics from Arizona State University.He trained athletes; especially major league baseball players including Matt Williams.
He eventually became the on-camera fitness “guy” on Good Morning Arizona. One of his fans writing in for help weighed 650 pounds. Powell met with him, eventually developed a program and worked with him (visiting his house every other day) for two years in which he healthily lost 400 pounds.
“He’s doing great. He’s got a life that he never expected,” says Powell. “The guy never had a girlfriend before. He has one now and he got certified to be a trainer and he’s kept the weight off for five years. But even today he is still dealing with the emotions and the choices he makes day-to-day. He fluctuates. He’s still dealing with who he day-to-day and it’s a challenge.”
What about competition with The Greatest Loser?
CP: “There’s no competition because there is no fear factor, especially for the people at home watching, there is no competition for them either. I want the people at home to feel ‘If I can do it, they can do it too. And the people who are selected for this are selected because they really want to lose weight and even though they mess up, they don’t get voted off the ranch.
If you’re choosen, you’re chosen and you write your own ending. Whether you gain ten pounds or lose 300 pounds, you get the ending to yourself.”
Transition happens within the aired episode.
CP: “There are eight episodes and each episode in one hour and it encompasses one individual’s weight loss journey over the course of one year.”
It’s all over the U.S.
CP: “All four corners of the United States. I am A-list on Southwest (Airlines).”
The largest amount of weight lost on the series.
CP: “Three hundred pounds in one year.”
Working With Genetic Fat vs. Problem Fat
CP: “The obesity gene that they have isolated and identified. They found that in people whose ancestors migrated north and southeast to colder environments so genetically they can store, it’s a survival gene so they can store much better, however the OB gene only shows itself when the environment is conducive for it, so really these people aren’t genetically fat, they’re fat because this is the environment they created for themselves. They consumed a lot more calories than they were burning. However, yes, it’s hard to grow humans to a certain size without that.”
Extreme MakeOver: Weight Loss Edition airs on ABC.