Jillian Michaels dishes on motherhood, intensity and the 'too thin' controversy on 'Biggest Loser'

“The Biggest Loser” star is on the road, hoping her “Maximize Your Life” tour sets off a few light bulbs in her audience. In the show, the fitness expert said her message is as much about shedding psychological baggage as excess pounds.

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Trainer Jillian Michaels led YMCA instructors, members and guests through a high-intensity workout at the Mall of America last October.

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Tough-talking trainer Jillian Michaels is looking for that epiphany moment.

“The Biggest Loser” star is on the road, hoping her “Maximize Your Life” tour sets off a few light bulbs in her audience. In the show, which comes to the Pantages on Saturday, the fitness expert said her message is as much about shedding psychological baggage as excess pounds.

In advance of her appearance, Michaels talked about being a mom, her 80/20 nutrition plan and how she gets those rock-hard abs.

She also opened up about the most recent “The Biggest Loser” winner, who was criticized for losing too much weight. Michaels says she was shocked by Stillwater native Rachel Frederickson’s 105-pound figure at the finale last month.

Q: What does it feel like to potentially be one of the most frequently cussed-at women in the United States?

A: I, personally, have a bit of a potty mouth from time to time, so I take it as a compliment. I think swearing is a great form of stress relief.

Q: Do you ever cheat?

A: I eat pretty well 80 percent of the time and the other 20 percent I have the pasta, pizza, glass of wine or the brownie. [I don’t] eat great all week long and then binge on the weekend. I don’t subscribe to that mentality.

Q: Does Minneapolis pass the Jillian Michaels test?

A: I’ve actually found Minneapolis to be quite cosmopolitan. There are great restaurants there. I find the people to be really athletic and healthy and fit.

Q: Do you work out 24/7?

A: I try to get in four to five half-hours a week that are really intense. I don’t have the time for the 90-minute yoga class or the 60-minute spin class right now, so it is … stuff like lunges, pushups, pullups, situps, jump squats, burpies and so on.

Q: What can people expect at the show?

A: The show breaks down into three sections, so if you are coming because you are curious about how to lose weight, we cover it in the first 30 minutes of the show. But the real question is: If it’s so simple, how come so many of us aren’t doing it? That really is the meat and potatoes of what the show is about.

Q: You make it sound easy. Is it?

A: It’s simple to do, but it’s not easy. It becomes a question of whether or not it’s worth it. When you really take a good hard look at what those bad behaviors have cost you, it helps you deal with the fear and the uncomfortability of moving forward.

Q: What does this format allow you to accomplish that your books, workout videos and “The Biggest Loser” don’t?

A: The great thing about a live medium like this is that I can engage in an actual dialogue with the audience. Throughout the show I am pulling them up on stage, asking them questions, engaging in conversations. While it’s the most intimate medium, it’s also the most effective when you’re trying to help somebody make a life change.

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