Two places I've always wanted to go: fat camp and Utah.


When I was a kid, I'd flip through the New York Times magazine (before it was T). My favorite parts of the magazine were the fashion pages (paltry two or three gorgeous pages...) and the summer camp ads in the back of the book. Maybe it's because I spent every summer from the age of 11 at the JHU-CTY math camp, but in the back of the NYT magazine there seemed to be this magical world of kids who went off to camp and had those life-altering young-adult-novel experiences. Canoe-ing, lanyard, campfires, I never really did that stuff, and could take it or leave it. To me, the most appealing summer camps were the weight loss camps. Those kids went away for a couple of weeks and came back slimmer, more popular, happier and cooler versions of their old selves. (Or, at least, that's what I told myself.)

So here I am, right now, today, sort of living out my childhood fantasy of going to fat camp. I'm here in Ivins, Utah, at the Biggest Loser Resort. No seriously, it's the Biggest Loser Resort at Fitness Ridge -- where "campers" eat 1200 carefully controlled calories a day, contraband is swiftly seized by Denae, the snack police, everyone hikes a bazillion miles, and we work out six hours a day. They're not joking around here.

So far, this is what's happened: Not that much.

I arrived at 4:30, got a briefing from the front desk, they gave me a handbook, my i.d. tag and room key, I dropped my things off in my room, and went for my initial evaluation (got weighed in (ugh), tape-measured, electrical-impedance bodyfat measured (bleurgh)), and headed over to orientation slash dinner, where they fed us pasta and confused the bananas out of me. I mean, it was a big bowl of pasta, I thought it was a test...

But it wasn't.

Apparently, there's no starving here and I can expect lots of yummy food (under 1200 calories, that is...). The food is great, I'm a huge salad bar fanatic so that totally works for me, and you even get dessert -- tonight it was a mousse-cake-type thing, but I can't be sure what it was made of since I'm pretty sure this is a non-dairy week.

Anyway, tomorrow we start at 6 a.m. with circuit training and I have to remember to fill my water bottles at the filtered water stations in the main building before we start... thank goodness I got the Camelbak (water backpack thing) -- first hike tomorrow morning is 4.5 miles to 9 miles, depending on how fast you make it to the top...

More TK. Here's to hoping I don't run into anything carnivorous with teeth or a rattlesnake this week.
"Observe Everything. Always think for yourself. Never let other people make important decisions for you." — from Bad News by Edward St. Aubyn