Bravo 'Work Out' trainer Doug Blasdell unexpectedly dies at age 44
By Christopher Rocchio and Steve Rogers, 01/24/2007
Doug Blasdell, a 44-year-old gay trainer on Bravo's reality series Work Out, unexpectedly died on Monday after being hospitalized over the weekend for unknown reasons.
Bravo confirmed Blasdell's death in a statement released Tuesday afternoon:
"All of us at Bravo are deeply saddened by the terrible news of Doug Blasdell's untimely passing. He was an inspiring trainer, an exuberant colleague who made the gym a very fun place each and every day and was extraordinarily warm in all aspects of his life. Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to his many friends and colleagues at this very difficult time."
According to his Bravo website biography, Blasdell was born in Los Angeles, CA to a middle class family. After becoming the first member of his family to attend college and putting himself through school at University of Southern California, he decided during his senior year that he wanted to be a trainer. That same year, he also came out and told his parents that he was gay.
Work Out, a reality series that followed the daily activities of fitness expert Jackie Warner's Sky Sport and Spa in Beverly Hills, CA, premiered on Bravo in July 2006. The indoor/outdoor gym's clients include numerous celebrities and members of the entertainment industry.
Three of the eight trainers featured on Work Out's first season, including both Warner and Blasdell, are gay. Former The Amazing Race 6 contestant Rebecca Cardon is also one of the gym's trainers. In July 2006, Blasdell gave an interview to AfterElton.com, a website for and about gay and bisexual men in entertainment and media industries.
Work Out trainer Doug Blasdell poses in a first season publicity photo (photo credit Bravo/Kevin Lynch.)
"The three [gay trainers on Work Out] give different examples of what it is to be gay. And none of it is negative," Blasdell told AfterElton.com. "There's nobody voted off. It's about taking care of yourself and eating right. It really is about being a trainer. Yeah, we drink alcohol, but the show represents healthy living. Physically and emotionally."
Blasdell said he had "an idea" of what Work Out would be like before filming for the series started.
"When I took the job here's what was most important to me: to portray a gay man as a healthy guy who is somewhat good looking and normal. Not over the top gay," Blasdell told AfterElton.com. "That's important because Hollywood doesn't show that a lot... I want to portray a real gay man for those people in Nebraska that are afraid to come out."
Blasdell said by appearing on Work Out, he also hoped to "show that you can be in your 40's and still have a good body and have a healthy lifestyle."
"I know a lot of 40-year-olds let their body's go. You can have great abs and be forty-three. You just have to work out two or three days a week," he told AfterElton.com. "And I saw it as an opportunity to be a role model."
Last October, Bravo announced it was about was going to begin production on a new six-episode second season of Work Outin November. While the network's announcement stated Warner's "fierce team of trainers, some old and some new" would return for the series' second season, it's unknown if Blasdell was participating in the new season's production.
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1/25 UPDATE: According to a Bravo spokesperson contacted by Reality TV World, Blasdell had been participating in Work Out's second season production, which was in its final stages when he was hospitalized. Blasdell will remain part of Work Out's second season cast, however no additional details regarding how Blasdell's death will impact the remaining production or be addressed in the show are currently available. Work Out remains on track to debut its new season on Monday, March 19.