When I lost weight, movies were my main inspiration.
I previously wrote a huge guide about how I used meditation to lose weight.
Meditation definitely helped me immensely. But I also needed inspiration. Inspiration is massive when it comes to losing weight. And for me, I found inspiration by watching movies. These movies (below) pumped me up and made me excited about becoming fit and healthy.
How movies give you the weight-loss mindset
It’s been proven that to get in shape you need to have the weight loss mindset.
But how do you get the right mindset?
I certainly didn’t have it at first.
When I started out on my weight loss a few years back I was about as lazy and greedy as Homer Simpson.
I used to sit on my butt watching movies all day, eating junk food, my health declining rapidly. I’d read all the regular weight loss advice and exercise advice. Didn’t work for me.
What I needed was inspiration. And then it struck me.
What if I changed just one very, very small thing? What if instead of sitting there watching demotivational movies, I instead watched some of the most motivational movies of all time?
I went through hundreds of movies that I thought would inspire weight loss. Some were better than others. Some did nothing. Others, the moment I saw them I wanted to exercise.
It’s those movies that made it into my list of top weight loss movies. It’s those movies that made me go from Homer to Rocky (well, okay, not quite Rocky, but I did lose a lot of weight and I ‘m very proud of that).
Movies made all the difference to me.
Top 10 Weight Loss Movies
- Did you know: You can also watch movies for self esteem.
Million Dollar Baby
In Million Dollar Baby, Frankie Dunn (Clint Eastwood) has coached a string of great fighters to success in the ring, but his obsession with boxing has cost him his personal life and estranged him from his daughter. One day Maggie Fitzgerald walks into Frankie’s life. Maggie must fight to convince Frankie to take her on before she steps in the ring to challenge for the championship.
Million Dollar Baby inspires weight loss in two key ways. Firstly, it inspires us to fight for what we believe in and to be willing to put in blood, sweat and tears to make it happen. It also shows how a physical activity like boxing can fill a hole in a person’s emotional and spiritual life.
Another movie that helped inspire me to lose weight is the ass kickingly awesome Ong Bak. One of my favourite weight loss movies ever.
The story of Ong Bak goes something like this.
When a sacred Buddha statuette called Ong Bak is stolen from a peaceful village by an immoral businessman, Booting must travel to Bangkok, where he uses his amazing Muay Thai skills to reclaim the statuette.
Sounds interesting, I hear you say, but just how exactly does that inspire weight loss?
Simple. Tony Jaa’s athleticism and martial arts skills are simply phenomenal. I doubt anyone alive could watch Ong Bak and not want to begin to master their body. It’s simply kickass. Think about your favourite action movie of all time. It made you feel amazing, right? I remember when I watched T2 the first time and felt like a commando, even though I was about 10.
Ong Bak is that sort of action-packed, high octane, explosive thrill that you can’t help but be pumped up by. But what’s next?
Save The Last Dance
My next choice of weight loss movie is Save The Last Dance. Obviously this is a completely different style of flick to Ong Bak. One’s about martial arts, the other’s about teenagers dancing. But they’re both inspiring.
In Save The Last Dance, Sarah Johnson’s (Julia Stiles) life gets turned upside down when she moves to Chicago to live with her father after her mother is fatally injured in a car accident. Out of sorts with her inner-city high school, she struggles to adjust but finds a friend in Derek (Sean Patrick Thomas). With Sarah being a ballerina and Derek a hip-hop dancer their mutual love of dance takes their relationship to a deeper level.
Save the Last Dance makes it onto my list for its simple feel-good nature. Its beautiful dance scenes make you want to shake your groove thang. Thanks to its beautiful dance scenes this is definitely one of the best weight loss movies ever.
Another fantastic movie for weight loss is Without Limits. A movie all about running. It’s a bit old. But in my opinion, some of the best movies are older ones.
Without Limits is the inspiring story of famous 1970s runner Steve Prefontaine. It tells Prefontaine’s story--his youth in Oregon, his training with legendary coach Bill Bowerman, his performance at the Munich Olympics of 1972, and his tragic death in a fatal car accident at age 24.
It’s an oldie but goldie.. .
Without Limits (1998) on Amazon
What makes Without Limits one of the best weight loss movies of all time is the passion Steve Prefontaine has for running. His love of running is infectious. Watching Without Limits, and seeing Steve Prefontaine running, will make you want to head out for a run immediately.
After watching Without Limits I booked my spot in the London Marathon. Trained my ass off. It hurt. But I made it. And you can too.
Let’s stick with the oldie but goldie sports flicks for a moment. There’s another one I’d like to share: Hoosiers.
In Hoosiers, Gene Hackman plays a sports coach who has a murky past. He teams up with a man suffering from alcoholism and depression. Together they train a small town’s basketball team and prepare them for the championship.
Hoosiers on Amazon
Hoosiers is a fantastic feel-good underdog movie, the sort of movie that incessantly whispers “Yes, you can.” It gives you that warm feeling at the pit of your stomach. It makes you feel great. And let’s be honest about this, it’s a lot easier to lose weight when you feel great.
Chariots of Fire
Chariots of Fire is the real-life story of two British athletes who compete against one another in the 1924 Olympics. One is a Jewish student for whom running is a fight for freedom from prejudice. The other is a devout Scottish missionary running for God.
Probably the most inspiring aspect of Chariots of Fire is the theme. It’s epic, and no one will ever forget it. And then there are the physical training scenes. They’re so inspiring they’ll kick you into gear and have you running up hills like Rocky in no time.
Breaking Away is a movie about a group of friends who have just graduated from high school. Their lives change when one wins a bike and soon begins to win races.
Aside from being a great movie, Breaking Away features some truly exceptional training scenes. When you see them you’ll definitely want to start working out.
In Batman Begins, millionaire Bruce Wayne relocates to Asia after his parents are killed and is trained in the art of fighting evil by Henri Ducard and Ra’s Al Ghul. After learning of a plan to wipe out Gotham City, Bruce Wayne returns home to save the day.
Batman Begins features one of the best and most inspiring physical training sequences in the history of film that will get your blood pumping and get you pumping iron.
Enter the Dragon
In Enter The Dragon, Bruce Lee is recruited by an agency to investigate a tournament hosted by Han who is believed to be an Opium trader. He goes to the mysterious island and enters a gruelling martial arts tournament that just happens to feature the best martial arts fights ever set to film.
Here’s a compilation of the best fight scenes of all time, including Enter The Dragon. This’ll inject some energy into your blood.
So how does Enter The Dragon inspires weight loss?
Bruce Lee is simply stunning in this movie. It’s his greatest work. And being Bruce Lee’s greatest work, this is simply the best fighting you will ever see on film. This movie will make you leap up off the settee. You’ll then fall over as you attempt a death-defying flying kick, but you’ll pick yourself back up again. WAHHHHH!!!!!
Down and out Rocky gets a once in a lifetime shot at the heavyweight championship. His training and the fight it leads to are the single greatest piece of inspiration for weight loss to have ever graced film. . . The theme tune will pump you up. The montage of Rocky getting in shape will sit in your mind, stirring little dreams of fitness and health. These will soon take over your mind so you grab your phone, put the rocky theme on loop and run out into a field shadow-boxing as you go. You’ll look profoundly stupid, but that won’t matter, cause in your head you’ll be a freaking CHAMPION.’
But wait. Just when I was finishing this list I found another movie.
It’s a movie that is actually about weight loss. But it’s not a major motion picture because Hollywood refuses to support overweight people.
The final movies is this…
LBS is a movie with a really interesting story. The writer, Carmine Famiglietti was heavily overweight. He wanted motivation to lose weight. So he decided to make a movie about himself losing weight, and he starred in it himself. That genius decision led to the creation of LBS, an independent movie that Hollywood producers didn’t back. LBS is a real, honest, gritty story that shows what it’s really like to try to go from obese to healthy. It’s great, and I really respect the writer / actor for his bravery. I mean, so far from Megan Fox wanting to show off her body, Carmine Famiglietti intentionally created a movie about one of the less impressive aspects of his life. To me that makes him a hero.
So there we are. Ten Hollywood movies that will inspire weight loss but which aren’t about weight loss, and one movie made independently by a guy who was brave enough to share his weight loss journey. What a lad.