Fitness expert and life coach Jillian Michaels has quickly risen to the top of the weight loss and wellness profession as one of the most effective trainers around. Best known for her role in helping contestants shed pounds on the popular television series, The Biggest Loser, Michaels offers an online program that teaches her simple, 3-part strategy for weight loss success that focuses on diet, exercise, and behavior modification.
How does the Jillian Michaels plan work?
The premise of the Jillian Michaels program is quite basic: you need to burn more calories than you consume in order to lose weight. Dieters begin by filling out a simple profile that determines diet and exercise recommendations based on individual basal metabolic rate, physical activity, and lifestyle practices.
Intended to instill permanent health changes, the program lets dieters know how many calories they need to consume in order to lose weight, how to choose right foods that will help them lose weight, and what to look for when shopping at the grocery store.
With a balanced diet that’s low-fat, low-carb and high in protein, the Jillian Michaels diet plan features three meals and a snack each day. The precise ratio of protein, carbohydrates and fats varies for each dieter depending on an individual’s unique oxidizing rate (individuals who are ‘fast oxidizers’ function better with protein and fats; ‘slow oxidizers’ require a greater amount of carbohydrates for optimal function).
Not surprisingly, exercise is a major cornerstone of the program, but does not require special equipment or an expensive gym membership. Online tools like a fitness video library, printed instructions, and personal diary feature help keep dieters active and moving toward their health goals.
A customized weight loss plan is free, and joining the Jillian Michaels program costs about $4 per week. You will be charged (approximately $52) when you subscribe and at the beginning of each following quarter. Membership may be cancelled at any time without penalty.
Program membership includes access to community forumsand message boards for supportand various topic discussions, an online weight tracker, access to professional trainers, exercise tips, and daily motivation.
The Jillian Michaels brand seems to grow a little bigger each day. As a result, the ‘Store’ section of the program website is by far the most comprehensive. From snacks to smart phone skins to shoes, books, DVDs, and supplements—dieters will find no shortage of accessories to choose from.
*Pricing reflects available cost details as of January 2012.
Pros and Cons
- The diet plan is based on the body type and nutritional requirements of each individual
- Free recipes and other weight loss tools available to members
- The program addresses the emotional and psychological issues associated with weight loss
- Exercise is integral to the plan, but the focus may be too intense for some
- Some members may find the commercialization of the Jillian Michaels brand and constant product offers undesirable
- The program does not make provisions for vegetarians, vegans or those with food allergies
Overall, the Jillian Michaels plan is an affordable, sound weight loss program. It addresses most of the major barriers to losing weight and offers unique support tools and resources.