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The Biggest Loser Interviewby Pattye Grippo    

This is an interview with Jennifer Rumple on October 26, 2011 about the show The Biggest Loser.

Jennifer Rumple

Question:
Why did you go after Ramon in the Elimination Room last night as opposed to Vinny, who really did attack you?

Jennifer Rumple:
Vinny did attack me unjustly if you watched if you hit the rewind I did as I said and was participatory in my team. Ramon is a threat. Ramon I see him, what he can do in the gym. And he works hard and I mean, everybody works hard in that gym, but I knew that he was a threat and it had to be somebody. And I was not going to vote for anyone on my own team. I felt like that was a contest and you have to do somebody. Black Team had never been in the Elimination Room before. So it was really kind of like how do you do it? You have to do it. We'll if this happens, that happens. But I just felt that Ramon was the biggest threat.

Question:
You said at one point that you felt like an outsider and you didn't mesh with the group. Why is that and is there any particular person making you feel this way, Jennifer?

Jennifer Rumple:
I was isolated in that pool for weeks because of this knee injury. Day and night I was in that pool by myself. I tried several times to get other people to get in there with me. Even Bob wanted people to get in there in that pool. But they chose to go to the gym or walk the Presidential Mile. And after weeks of doing that and being isolated on my own, trying to get integrated back in that group, alliances had already been formed. And as you can see from the numbers on the scale, I was becoming a threat.

Here's this person with this knee injury that's starting to get released for more things in the gym that the doctor's allowing me to do like the elliptical and other things besides just arm exercises in the pool. And I was losing really big numbers. I'm a person that really tries to engage people. I'm a very positive person and will approach somebody if I think something's going on or if there might be a problem. And it just after a while it's kind of like, well I am here for my own journey and to focus on me. And I really tried to just stay out of negativity and focus on myself, and put my head down, and listen to my trainer, and do what I was there to do, which was to get healthy and lose weight.

Question:
When they were showing you leave the Elimination Room, your voiceover said you would be more open to the process of living in the house if you could do it all over again. And I think viewers don't really understand, like what the drama is like in a reality show environment like that and what they would do in that situation. Can you just expand on what you meant by being more open to living in the house and maybe kind of the drama that you weren't prepared for?

Jennifer Rumple:
My biggest thing there was to lose weight. And I wanted to get healthy. And the biggest reason that I wanted to stay on that ranch, I knew that my head was on the chopping block for a good couple weeks. And I knew that people were gunning for me because I'm a strong competitor and I was becoming a threat. And being isolated did not help. But when I said more open to the process in the house, not so much of game play I believe that I did everything I was supposed to do as a human being and as a positive person to engage people and be a person of interest and be interested in other people's lives.

But I'm single. I have a dog, as you know. You know, all these people have their own families and they've got kids and they've got grandkids and all these different things that they have more in common with each other and they bond closer over that. So when you have that going on, and then I'm stuck in this pool and I'm not able to be with these people, in all honesty, there wasn't really much time for anything. I mean Bob encourages us to journal and it's like when do we have the time? You know, we're trying to get this burn in and we're trying to get this weight off.

There's not a lot of time for things. And I think this knee injury was kept me in the pool. And it kept me away from the people. But I think when I said that about the mistake, had I gotten involved in game play, which is not something that I would have done, anyway, I think would have been able to stay longer. Because I know that kind of stuff goes on here. And it's kind of obvious, especially after you leave, you got to look back and think, ???Oh, that's why that happened.??? And you've got 15 people. All of us are fat for a reason. Most of it is emotional. We all love food but we eat for certain reasons.

We've all got these issues coming in that we've all got this baggage. And some people just don't mesh with others. And that's just what happens. And unfortunately because I tried to stay out of that negativity and separate myself from it ended up being my exile from the show. So it made me the odd man out because it's not the popular thing to do to not get involved in that stuff.

Question:
Have you had a chance to talk to any of your fellow contestants and smooth things over since?

Jennifer Rumple:
We've all spoken. We've all had conversations. A few people have apologized. A few other people have said it was just a game. I care about these people. I want the best for these people. I believe a few of them will be long-time friends. And I wish everybody the best. It's kind of hard for me to understand because I truly was there for my health and there to lose weight. I mean, I had been as you know, I applied back in 2005 the first time after I was inspired by Bob and Erik Chopin's journey together.

Even my circle of friends have said ???Jen has always said this is going to be the thing that really does it for her.??? And it has. And as you can see from my Where Are They Now segment, it stuck. And I'm still on that path. And it's working. And I can do nothing but pay it forward now because I believe that's the right thing to do because I was so blessed to get that opportunity.

Question:
Could you talk a little bit about your bond with Bob?

Jennifer Rumple:
I basically had been a fan of Biggest Loser. And in 2005, like I said, Season 3, I saw his journey with Erik Chopin at the finale. And Erik pushing Bob up in a wheelbarrow. And I said out loud, and it was just my dog next to me, that man would change my life one day. Because I truly believed it. There was just something about him. He just seemed caring and knowledgeable and I knew that if I had access to him or somebody like him, my life would change.

And fast forward six years, and here I am in this desert and I get a chance to fight for him to be my trainer. And he's just a person who knows which buttons to push in me to push me harder, to get me to challenge myself, believe in myself. And I will be forever grateful to him for that. I mean he's he pushed me to start believing in myself that I could do this. And I can, obviously. And it's a fantastic feeling. And I will be again forever grateful to him. He's changing the world with what he does for people.

Question:
How about the trainer that you found now that you're back home? Do you have as close a connection with that person?

Jennifer Rumple:
I call him my mini Bob. I have a really good friend that has worked at a fitness club for a long time and I have gone over and over and over again, and gone and stopped, and gone and stopped. And when I got back she knew about my journey. She knew I was on The Biggest Loser and said, ???I have a guy I want you to meet.??? And I met him. And his name is Michael Friedman and \he's got just a great style of working me out. He knows what works, what doesn't work for me.

And I think the biggest thing with a trainer and a person is that you have to have that connection where you can trust them, you feel safe with them, and they push you. They know how to push you. And Michael is he does the same thing for me. And we're the best of friends and he's just fantastic. And he's no-nonsense, as well. And I'm that person. You know, there are a lot of people that write and say, ???I would never be able to have anybody yell at me. I can't believe that's okay.??? And that's kind of how I like to work. People yell at me because it fuels me. It makes me stronger. Like, ???You don't think I can do this? Oh, can do this. Let me show you I can do this.???

And that's just the style. And I was very fortunate to come home to find somebody like that. And I encourage everybody, if you write about this, to not settle for one person look at two or three people, four or five people, until you find the right one that's actually going to push you and challenge you to challenge yourself.

Question:
What was so difficult about Bob not being there and what triggered you to focus on your weight loss and your exercise plan?

Jennifer Rumple:
I'm a big person on giving kudos to where kudos are due. And I think a lot of that comes out in my story on the show. Because, again, he was the first person that has ever really believed in me and I needed that to believe in myself. But, because Bob is a great trainer, and because I am a strong, determined girl I was losing weight when Bob was gone in Texas. I lost 8 pounds when he was gone.

And he instilled in me the belief in myself and the tools that I needed to make a lifestyle change. So even though I knew that I would miss him, because it was more of a psyche thing than anything else. I mean, he knew what buttons to push in me. If I'm on that elliptical and I'm pushing myself, he's like, ???Go harder, go faster go...??? Or in that pool, kicking ???Go harder, go faster.??? And I would think, ???Does he really, truly not think that I'm pushing as hard as I can????

But he knows how to get me to push just that extra, extra little bit. And that's what some people need to reach that next level, and that's what he did for me. He motivated me in that way. But again, I had the tools. And I proved that when I got home. I just continued on that journey. And I think everybody needs a support system and he was just a great motivator for me.

Question:
Can you tell me a little bit about what kind of exercising you're doing, and how your life is, and your diet plan?

Jennifer Rumple:
When I first got back I still have the stress fracture on the knee. It is healing, though. So Dr. Huizenga's very happy about that. I think the hardest thing when I got back is I was nervous, I had just gotten released to do treadmill, actually the day before I was eliminated. So when I get back I'm pushing through this fear of, ???Oh my gosh, every step I take on the pavement or when I walk, am I going to have another crack in this knee? Am I going to have another crack????

And once I started trusting myself to know what kind of pain was good, what kind of pain was bad, I started doing more and more of that. So I have been in training for this marathon. These little tiny successes, I was like going at a 3.0 on the treadmill for more than two minutes, and I'm like in tears. Because I think, ???Oh my gosh, that's so amazing.??? Because I couldn't do it before. I do a lot of jogging, a lot of pool work, and I am in love with boxing. I absolutely love boxing.

And my diet. I'm just basically eating the right foods. You know, Bob is huge on organics and eating just fresh food, things that aren't processed, things that aren't have no chemicals. And even though it's a little bit more expensive, I can tell a huge difference. Even my skin looks better. I feel better. So I'm just really trying to stick to that plan of just fresh, nothing boxed, everything either grown or I know you want to say killed but it's something with a mother or something that's been grown. That's what I'm eating.

Question:
Could you talk about like what it's like when you look back at the old photos of yourself and if it motivates you or it's difficult to watch?

Jennifer Rumple:
I can tell you last night when I watched the black and white version of when I first got onto the ranch. And it made me incredibly sad because I thought at the time because I am an optimistic, positive, happy person that tries to see the good in everything, but I just saw my face. The difference between now and then, it made me really sad. It made me cry. It made me very sad. And I honestly cannot identify with that person anymore, truly.

I had a couple friends over last night watching with me and like, ???Oh my gosh, Jen. I would never even recognize you from that.??? It's like a different person. And the best thing about it, it's, yes, it is the physical. Yes, I'm smaller than I was then and healthier. But it's more of the internal part that's completely different now because I want this for my life. And I want others to want this for their life because it's the best feeling in the world.

Question:
What is something that you're looking forward to doing now that you've lost all the weight?

Jennifer Rumple:
I keep saying I'm open to the process and anything that comes my way. But I received a couple things, actually. As far as my own personal things, I want to kite surf, because that's something that I've watched every day when I walk my dog, because I live on an island in the bay. And people do it every single day. But I thought there's no way. First of all, I'm never going to fit into a wet suit, A. B, I'm never going to have the core strength or arm strength to be able to do this. But I think I can do it now. So that's next on my list.

It's crazy but I hate it when I'm doing it, but I love to run. I don't know what that's about. I'm still trying to get my brain wrapped around it. But the big thing is I got something on my Facebook page yesterday. A woman was asking me to come to her local Girl Scout Troop that she leads or possibly the school. And that just makes me so excited and so happy because I want to inspire others with my journey and hopefully instill healthy habits and a healthy lifestyle in young people so they can get started that way and never have to go through what I went through as a kid being overweight.

Question:
I want to know what happened to 100 pounds of apples. What did you guys do with them?

Jennifer Rumple:
I'm not really sure. I think we were all so tired from the challenge we left the scene. I'm not really sure. I'll ask. I'll ask and get back to you.

Question:
How are you preparing for the marathon and how do you see yourself finishing?

Jennifer Rumple:
I'm very optimistic. I would like to say that I'm going to win that marathon and get back as a finalist. But there's some stiff competition out there, so I know everybody's really training hard. I, again when I got back I the marathon's facing us and we've got to get ready for this. And I just got released for treadmill work when - before I got off the ranch.

And I got home and my trainer knows the goal in mind and basically you got to start moving. You got to start getting on that treadmill, you got to start getting out to the track. And I was nervous. So I'm in constant connection with the athletic trainer, Sandy Krum, and Dr. Huizenga and telling them how I'm doing. And they ask what about this, what about that? And I just have to be really smart about the pain level and what's happening and just be really smart about it.

But basically just got to get out there and start moving and running and get your cardio up. And I think that's the key. And like everybody says, it's more of a mental game than anything else. Because I think we trained so hard on that ranch that our cardio is at a crazy level. To still be as heavy has we all are, we probably have better cardio than a lot of people who are thin or at a healthy weight. So I'm not too concerned about that. I'm just during the training I'm just making want to make sure that the knee's the knee's going to be good and doesn't fail me. Let's put it that way.

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