11.30.2008

Celebrity Trainers - The Only Kind Now?

There's an entire industry banking on our holiday weight gain anxiety. In reality, the average American gains only three pounds, which is lost again by February. This time of year, we are inundated with ads and T.V. shows promoting weight loss and the new staple: celebrity trainers.

Celebrity trainers. Are they the only kind that count these days? Hyper, square-jawed spandex lovers can't grace the stage of The Today Show or Oprah without having stuffed a celebrity under their belt. We now expect the word celebrity to precede trainer, and if it does not, the concept sounds empty. If your clients aren't on a "Marty" basis with Mr. Scorcese, you don't count.

Some people seem to use celebs not to bolster, but to create their image. Yoga guru Vinnie Marino only allows personal praise on his website from those who have made the silver screen, or at least network television. Jennifer Jason Leigh, David Duchovny & Robert Downey Jr. have their praise quoted throughout his website. Celeb trainers are granted book deals, reality television shows and exercise videos, regardless of their level of knowledge and expertise in the field.

Just to level the playing field, there is a downside to this hubris and celebrity worship. Under the constant and menacing public eye, their beloved celebs might fluctuate in pounds. US Weekly will zoom in on a pencil-thin fat roll as Reese Witherspoon dines at a sidewalk cafe and DListed will blow up a photo of Jennifer Love Hewitt munching on a chicken leg and title it, "The Roast Whisperer."

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