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The Biggest Loser Interviewby Pattye Grippo    

This is an interview with Lauren Lee on January 18, 2012 about the show The Biggest Loser.

Lauren Lee

Question:
Can you share with us the overall experience of being chosen and living at the ranch and then your thoughts about someone like Joe just walking away from it.

Lauren Lee:
This whole experience is a dream to me still to today. I never would have thought that I would have been picked out of hundreds of thousands of people to be put onto the Biggest Loser and it is it's amazing and it's amazing journey learning everything and meeting everybody. It's just been a whirlwind but I treasure every single moment of it.

And then with Joe leaving Joe just struggled with missing his family so much he has two little ones at home and an older child as well and you could tell he was missing them that last week. And he decided to go home but that's just what he needed to do.

Question:
What are your thoughts on the elimination process? Should it not be the person who's lost the least amount of weight?

Lauren Lee:
I was very surprised. We do get to talk before elimination and I was still shocked. It's a game and that's what we signed up for. So it's just how we vote.

Question:
Did Joe leaving affect you in the house and everybody else like just the whole moral of it?

Lauren Lee:
Yes it really did. Joe was like a big brother to me on the ranch. So I took it really hard that he left but I just took it in a different way and I went out and worked out even harder. But we were all very sad to see Joe and go home.

Question:
Does he still keep in touch? Does he still call you and ask you guys how far along you guys have gotten and?

Lauren Lee:
Yes I talk to Joe a lot so through emails and through text messaging and phone calls I still do keep in contact with him and it's pretty cool to see his progress as well because he's doing amazing at home.

Question:
Can you elaborate a little bit on what went on between the weigh-in and the elimination? What did you guys talk about in and what were your expectations for what was going to go on in there? Did you guys come to any kind of consensus and they kind of blindsided you? How did that work?

Lauren Lee:
After the weigh-in we usually have a deliberation and we have about an hour or so to talk it all through and we all ask each other questions about the week and what happens and who we think should go home. And at the end of that I mean I fought for myself I said that I still need to be here. I worked hard so hard this week but I still only lost three pounds. I still need to figure this out. I still have lots more to learn and we all fought for each other and we didn't really come up with who was going to go home. And I was completely shocked when my name started coming.

Question:
Can you pinpoint the moment when you finally like when it finally came out when was it and what is it exactly mean that you found the athlete inside of you?

Lauren Lee:
Yes grown up I was that athlete. I played plenty of sports played throughout college. And then once I stopped playing I put on a lot more of my weight and it was hard to be on the ranch and you're still a big girl and everybody telling you that you're an athlete. And I just couldn't see it because I knew where I was when I was an athlete. So it's hard to get that in my mind that I am an athlete and after running that half marathon is when I really saw in myself that I can do it. And that I am an athlete.

Question:
Your bio on the Biggest Loser site said that you actually studied fitness and exercise science in college and it seems like those things are a little bit in conflict in your personal life. Can you talk a little bit about that and maybe how you're feeling about that kind of stuff?

Lauren Lee:
Yes, sure. Yes I got my undergrad in Adult Fitness and I got my Masters in Exercise Science with an emphasis in Cardiac Rehab. Through those years that I was in college after I stopped playing sports I knew that I had just to focus on my education. I grew up being dyslexic and ADD so I had to study this education so much harder and so much longer.

So instead of going to the gym and focusing on my health I was focusing on my education. I had to go to the library and study four or five hours instead of just an hour. So through college I had to focus on myself in a way without focusing on my health so that I can get through college so that I could get the job and pay the bills and all that kind of stuff.

Question:
What's the most important thing you learned about yourself during your time on the ranch?

Lauren Lee:
I learned that I need to believe in myself that I can do anything that I put my mind to.

Question:
What in particular do you think you learned from your own from your personal coach during this time?

Lauren Lee:
Yes Dolvette. Dolvette is an awesome person. He believes in me when I couldn't believe in myself. And to push me even harder and longer than I thought that I could go. And so learning from him and learning different exercises and ways to push me was just amazing.

Question:
Did you pick up any new diet ideas that you want to bring home with you?

Lauren Lee:
Yes I learned a lot of nutrition. I wished that I could have learned more on the ranch but one of the things that I learned most was excuse me that you have to write everything down good or bad whatever you put in your body you have to write it down and just keep yourself accountable for what you put inside your body.

Question:
What are your plans to continue your journey when you get home in terms of losing weight and improving your health?

Lauren Lee:
I plan on continuing exactly what I was doing on the ranch and just keep on working out and going to the gym and eating healthy so that I can look like a true athlete on the stage at the finale.

Question:
Going off what you were just saying actually in the in your last answer your teammates all said they had great faith that you would continue great weight loss journey off the ranch. Can you offer a bit more detail in your fitness and diet routine since returning home?

Lauren Lee:
Yes. Coming home I mean I really just workout just like I do at the ranch. Not as long as I did. When I was on the ranch I would work out between 6 and 10 hours but now I'm home I'm working out in between anywhere between two and four hours a day. And doing from weights to cardio and everything like that every in-between. And just trying to keep on it so that I can lose this weight and kick some butt at the finale.

Question:
Diet-wise what specifically are you what are your tricks?

Lauren Lee:
My main trick is just to I mean I can't emphasize this enough is to write everything down. There's temptations out there every single day, there's that chocolate bar, and the grocery store, there's a big humongous scoop of peanut butter in the cabinet. You just have to measure everything and be accountable for everything that you eat and it really shows once you write everything down and once you are accountable for everything.

Question:
Do you have as much faith in yourself as your teammates do?

Lauren Lee:
Not when I left the ranch but now especially after running this half marathon I believe in myself a lot more now.

Question:
In the beginning at the ranch I remember you talking about your goals for the future including that you wanted to lose weight and move on with your life and meet somebody and hopefully settle down one day and have kids. And it seems like the reason that some of the competitors sent you home last night is for the exact lack of those things that were seen as you not having quote unquote distractions in your life. How did you feel? How did you take that and how did you feel about that?

Lauren Lee:
That was a good point I mean they said that I didn't have any children or family at home to distract me but I have plenty of other distractions. I'm a recent college graduate that has student loans that I still have to pay off and figure out how to pay them without a job because the economy right now is so down that I can't find a job out of grad school. So there's just so many other distractions and so many other ways of being stressful but this is the season of no excuses and I had a take those and just let them go and still workout and still be strong.

Question:
You had mentioned earlier your relationship with Dolvette. When we're watching at home we are starting to see this tension build between Bob and Dolvette and I'm wondering if you can tell us is that tension real? Is it for the cameras? What should we be making of that?

Lauren Lee:
Bob and Dolvette have an interesting relationship. It's definitely not a Bob and Jillian but I mean they're just two trainers working out in a gym and doing what they're to do to change our lives to give us as the contestants our lives back.

Question:
But is there can you feel tension between the two of them? I mean are they really making it personal?

Lauren Lee:
You know, I don't see the interviews. So they use in the show that we watched last night I didn't get to see all these interviews until that night until last night the first time that I saw it. But I don't see that as much as that tension in the gym as what the show has portrayed.

Question:
And I have a last question about Conda who is at least his audiences I think is coming across as a little bit of a piece of work. Is the camera is this catching her precisely the right moments or is she as abrasive as she appears to be?

Lauren Lee:
Yes Conda's an awesome person. She speaks her mind and lets everybody know what she's thinking at that time. But it's also very stressful to live in this house or in this mansion. There's we started out with 18 people in the mansion. I mean it is so stressful this like those are the only people that you can interact with and tensions fly high every once in a while. And things happen and then we just it blows over and we're fine the next day.

Question:
What else are you now looking forward to doing maybe you couldn't do before whether it's more marathons or something else completely different?

Lauren Lee:
Yes I just am looking forward to being more active and having a lot more energy. On my bucket list I would love to run a full marathon. I've gotten half of it so I have half a check mark but I would like to fully check off that full marathon off my bucket list. I would like to do a lot of things like skydive, parasail, like a lot of just different activities that my weight was holding me back because there was a weight limit on them.

Question:
From the players that are left at the ranch, is there someone in your mind that is the one to beat or who you think will emerge as the real the strongest the real competitor?

Lauren Lee:
They all are and I can't really just pinpoint one person because week from week they go from super strong to even super stronger and it's going to be a very interesting season.

Question:
You mentioned before about looking for a job. Have your career dreams or aspirations changed at all since this experience?

Lauren Lee:
Not really. In the back of my head I've always wanted to be a doctor but this so much schooling right now and I don't want to do that right now. I mean I just got out eight years of college. I don't think I could do eight more. But I would no I mean I still want to be in cardiac rehab and help people get their lives back just like I just got my life back.

Question:
You haven't registered for any big athletic events in the future? Is that still I mean or do you have like your eye on one thing that you want to do coming up?

Lauren Lee:
Yes I haven't registered for anything yet. It's been crazy but I would love to run the Marine Corp. Marathon in DC.

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