Airdate: Fat and Back

fat4On Sunday night ONE screens a doco feature about a trainer / model who undergoes a Super-Size Me-style makeover by putting on weight and trying to lose it again, to try and understand what his clients go through.

This is the feature debut of Australian director Davin Sgargetta.

Paul ‘P.J.’ James has never been fat. As a successful international fitness and underwear model, as well as a personal trainer, he trains daily to stay in shape and always strives to help his clients achieve great results. Already feeling a need to gain an elevated psychological understanding of the plight of overweight people, one of his struggling obese clients dares P.J. to live like him so he can get a feel for just how hard it is to lose weight. Seeing the value in walking a mile in their shoes, that is what he decides to do. P.J. aims to gain 40 kg in four months, maintain that weight for two months, then lose the weight over another six months — a full 12-month journey from fit to Fat and Back. To add to the challenge, P.J. decides to work with an overweight person (Michelle) on the way back; someone who has struggled with their weight their entire life. What he thought would be a straightforward experiment however, quickly becomes the challenge of his life. After gaining weight quickly, P.J. begins to lose muscle, causing him to struggle to reach his target, as depression sets in. Will he make it to 120kg (264lbs) with his mental health intact? On the way back, P.J. ironically, also struggles to lose the fat. The weight-loss is slow, and as this starts to play havoc with his confidence and mental toughness, Michelle also begins to waiver.

Emotions run high, truths are faced and dramatic lessons are learned. Will P.J. make it back to 80kg (176lbs)? If so, will he make it back alone, or will Michelle turn the corner and also achieve dramatic results? Leading obesity experts discuss some of the key and often misunderstood factors that are contributing to the continual growth of the obesity epidemic, from evolutionary factors, to the changing food environment, to the science of over-eating and the addictive nature of junk food, as they help to describe some of the things that P.J. and millions of others around the world are experiencing, as P.J. seeks to achieve what no other trainer has done before him. 

Sunday July 22 at 6:30pm on ONE.


  1. muscledude_oz

    An inspirational story. It was PJ’s story and the media coverage it received at the time which convinced me to lose over 40kg and get back into the gym. It’s a pity this show is being hidden on ONE while the main channel is screening The Simpsons, some episodes having been repeated over 20 times and are still in 4:3 SD.

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