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The Biggest Loser Interviewby Pattye Grippo    

This is an interview with eliminated contestant Kaylee Kinikini on April 27, 2011 about the show The Biggest Loser.

Kaylee Kinikini

Question:
You had expressed a few times a desire to leave the ranch. Was your elimination a relief or had you changed directions in the last few weeks?

Kaylee Kinikini:
When I was first eliminated, I was disappointed because I had finally, since my Dad left, I found the desire to be for me. I always wanted my Dad to be there more than me and once he was gone I actually wanted to be there. And so it was disappointing when I left but once I was done, I just realized it's on to the rest of my life and so it was bittersweet but it was sad leaving the ranch.

Question:
How did the hookup with Vance go down?

Kaylee Kinikini:
There's kind of a lot of behind the story. I actually met Vance before that episode. Back when we were auditioning for the show, we were in California going through the process of trying out for the show, and we weren't allowed to talk to each other, all us contestants. I could see Vance from my hotel window. And we'd always wave to each other, and I was attracted to him and he was attracted to me, and we would just wave to each other. I never knew his name or anything and I remember the day that we were announced that we had made the show, we were getting ready to leave and I saw him from our window again and I looked out and Vance, he pulled out this little sign that said "I heart you" on it and that totally caught me off guard and I was totally flattered by it. And it was really cute of him and ever since then I left for the ranch and I didn't know who my mystery window boy was but I thought about him.

And then when the show brought him back, I was completely shocked because I remember thinking, I was like, if it's that guy from the window, I'm going to freak out. And then sure enough, he walked in there and it was really crazy to see him. And so after I got home and was eliminated, he sent me a message over Facebook and we started texting and I would go down to Utah to go visit Justin and Vance, and then he'd come to Idaho, and then we just started dating.

Question:
It seems the actual weight loss is only part of The Biggest Loser process. Can you talk about through finding your self-confidence that you so desperately needed and fixing what was broken?

Kaylee Kinikini:
It's a weight loss show, but for me the biggest change that I had was emotionally and changing how I felt about myself, my self-confidence, and my self-worth. And that has made the biggest difference in my life and going through this whole process, it just really changed me by pushing yourself to the limits and really digging deep and finding what's wrong inside rather than fixing the outside of you. And that's what has made the biggest change in my life and that's what I'm most grateful to Biggest Loser for.

Question:
Can you tell me some more about your day trip with your Dad in New Zealand and what it meant to you?

Kaylee Kinikini:
That trip with my Dad was amazing. When Olivia and Irene had first told us that they gave it to us, both me and my Dad just cried because that was just so special because there was so much family history in New Zealand, and to be able to spend that with my Dad, it was amazing. And it was just a good time just to reflect with my Dad on how far we've come in this journey and we've done it together. And it was just such a special experience and I'm so grateful for those two for giving me that opportunity.

Question:
I was reading that your first date kind of involved Justin as well. I was wondering if you could tell me a little bit about that?

Kaylee Kinikini:
Vance is living in Logan, he's training with Justin. Once we found out that Vance lived close enough to Justin, when he came and visited us on the ranch, we all told him he had to go visit Justin, Justin would help him out because that's just the kind of guy Justin is. And so I went down to Logan to visit Justin and Vance was living there, training with Justin and so that's kind of how Justin's involved in the picture.

Question:
And what did you do on your first date?

Kaylee Kinikini:
When I went down for the first time to actually spend time with Vance, I don't know if you could call it a date but we just spent time with each other. We were at Justin's house, a lot of the time we spent time with Justin's family. We worked out together, we went to Justin's Call Out class he does there in Logan, so I guess our first date was kind of working out.

Question:
I know that you said on the ranch that you had to find empowerment in yourself and find that self-worth. What has this relationship meant in that process?

Kaylee Kinikini:
For me, the relationship with Vance is a product of how now I feel comfortable with myself. Before, I never really dated anybody, I never had a boyfriend or anything, and I just never believed in myself. I never had the self-worth to think that anyone could like me or even love me and so now, coming from The Biggest Loser, I'm more confident in myself to actually open myself up to being loved and to letting someone see another side of me. And that was a huge step for me and so that said - so my relationship with Vance just goes to show that I am comfortable with myself to share that part of me with him.

Question:
In regards to your romance with Vance, does it help that you have a lot in common in terms of the weight struggles that you both have faced?

Kaylee Kinikini:
I think it absolutely helps, because the journey that we've gone on, it's such a major one, especially as young as we are and to be going through all these things, not just physical changes, but these emotional changes, they're hard. And to have somebody side by side that you can talk to, that can relate to how you're feeling and just go with you just be there with you when you're going through all these different emotions, it's so helpful and supportive to know that someone understands. And so with that, it's helped a lot with our relationship. We just understand each other, what we're going through. We understand each other's struggles and our successes. It helps a lot that we're both going through this.

Question:
How do you motivate on a bad day when you don't feel like working out?

Kaylee Kinikini:
We help each other out. Obviously I'm a little bit further than he is because he didn't get on the ranch, so I get to help him on his journey but he also helps me, he helps motivate me. It's funny how we just kind of inspire each other, when one person's having a bad day, you can just pick each other up and it's so good to have that kind of support and to be able to trust somebody, to tell them your struggles and not have to worry that they're judging you, that they're thinking badly of you, that they accept who you are and understand your struggles, but at the same time will help you through anything, so it's been great.

Question:
You said at the weigh-in that you were feeling frustrated with the kind of yo-yoing in your numbers and then you said afterwards that you'd kind of figured out the reason why. So I was wondering what you found that reason was and how you've tackled that?

Kaylee Kinikini:
I realized that why I was yo-yoing so much is because I was right there at my goal weight, and when you get to that point it's all about just trying to focus and stay at that point and it's hard. All the past Biggest Loser contestants I've talked to are saying maintenance is probably one of the hardest things. And so it's a struggle, and you have to be patient with yourself and your body, sometimes it will just go back and forth no matter how much effort you put into it. That week I was very frustrated because I had put so much work in to still see a gain, that was very frustrating to me. After leaving, it was like if I'm happy with the work I put in, and I did everything I can, that's all I can ask for. I just have to feel good about myself and that's kind of the turning point I made.

Question:
Now you are at your goal weight, what is your fitness and nutrition plan? Do you let yourself have cheat days?

Kaylee Kinikini:
When you're in real life, it's hard. You still have the same cravings and temptations but you just kind of have to be moderate with things. Maybe a little splurge, but the thing is when you have those splurges you have to exercise even more and it gets to the point where it's like is it even worth doing that? Do I really want to have that piece of cake when I can just have something healthier that tastes as good? So it's just a balance of things and what's worth it and not, but it's a good challenge to have for me because it just makes me realize how much my life has changed and that this is going to be a part of my life, and so it's been great.

Question:
What was your reaction to what Rulon did and said at the weigh-in?

Kaylee Kinikini:
When Rulon announced that he was leaving, I was completely shocked. You could probably see on the episode it was a big shock to everybody. I know Rulon very well, and we're really close, and I knew he was having problems with at home and he was struggling, but I know he was just ready to go home, and I respected his decisions and he got what he needed and he left. And as sad as I was to see him go, I definitely respected that.

Question:
Starting off this season at Fitness Ridge, you obviously didn't get the same opportunity to bond with the girls on the ranch that they got to bond with each other. Did that make it really difficult for you, because they seemed so close, like kind of like a clique. Was it hard for you to transition into the ranch environment, seeing that they had that relationship with each other?

Kaylee Kinikini:
They were definitely very close, the girls were. And they had that bond, and it's only natural, I had the same kind of bond with my Fitness Ridge people. You know, unfortunately, I was with all the guys and all the girls were kind of separate. But it was tough, I mean, we were always nice to each other and we do love each other but there is that special bond you have with the people that you've been with from the beginning. And so I definitely understood that, but we're all good friends. But I definitely understood that they were a lot closer to each other.

Question:
America watched you get to your goal weight on the show. Are you planning on losing any more weight for the finale, or are you just okay with maintaining it?

Kaylee Kinikini:
If I lose more weight that's great, but it's more about how I feel and just going after the things I want in life, going after getting my training certification, just being happy with life and so, I mean, it would be great to lose a little bit more but I'm happy with where I'm at and it's just about looking and feeling good.

Question:
When your Dad was voted off, we had a chance to speak with him about how proud he was of you. Let me flip the question, how proud are you of him and his determination on the time at the ranch?

Kaylee Kinikini:
I am so proud of my Dad. Watching him from the very beginning, I remember one of the proudest moments I had was when he was stuck in his room just having to shadowbox for a workout, watching his determination and how motivated he was to really changing his life. It's something that I never really saw at home. And to be able to go through this whole Biggest Loser experience with my Dad and to see a whole other side of him was absolutely amazing and I'm so grateful for that, because it just made our bond together just that much stronger.

Question:
A lot of questions have been asked, let me ask you this. You mentioned last night that you hadn't been kissed before, so now you've had your first kiss. Was it everything you expected and was it worth waiting for?

Kaylee Kinikini:
I didn't ever know what to expect and now it's really nice, I'm glad to finally get that out of the way. It's been nice.

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