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The Biggest Loser Interviewby Pattye Grippo    

This is an interview with Michael Dorsey on February 12, 2013 about the show The Biggest Loser.

Michael Dorsey

Thinking back to when you first arrived at the ranch, how different were your expectations from what the reality was?

Michael Dorsey:
I'm just laughing because it was everything I thought it would be multiplied by a million. I just I really thought that we would be eased into the first workout. I knew the first workout was going to be hard because I mean any first workout is hard for anybody that hasn't been exercising regularly. But I had no idea that we were going to be thrown into it like there was no stretches and warming up. I mean they went full guns a blazing.

Also there were other aspects of it like the fact that on the very first day we were told look if you're going to eat, you're going to have to cook it yourself and so it was a lot of it was a learning curve that we had to overcome rather quickly. But then as we went along we were given the tools to do it more effectively.

What do you think is the most important thing you learned from being on the show?

Michael Dorsey:
I would probably have to say headspace. It's about the headspace. I've tried to lose weight several different times. I grew up in a rather athletic situation, but my headspace was not where I would say it is now. It's getting that headspace together. Realizing that there are decisions that, one there are decisions that I make that not only affect me but they also affect others and also making up in my mind that I really want this for myself.

I was really sick. I really was sick because I was living my life for so many years and I think I've commented on the show committing suicide. And I knew what I was supposed to do, but I wasn't willing to do it. But I don't get it. I don't understand why I was so willing to sacrifice my life when it was not necessarily simple but it was something that I could fix and I realized that my headspace wasn't right.

The turning point for me in that was when Dr. H asked me, he said, ???If you have cancer, are you going to avoid getting chemotherapy,??? and I was like no. Like I mean that's a given. You're going to go to chemotherapy to fix it. And I realized at that moment wow this is what I've doing all my life. I can fix this thing but I'm not willing to do it. Why? And I realized my headspace wasn't right.

What's next for you?

Michael Dorsey:
I'm excited about it. I was a professional speaker before I started the show and so I'm actually looking forward to taking what I've learned from this journey and moving into the next thing with that. And one of the projects I'm working on is involving rollercoasters. I'm trying to ride rollercoasters all over the country. I'm really excited about that because this is an exciting moment for me because it's something I haven't been able to do for several years. And that not being able to ride a rollercoaster was like that thing that I really wanted to do but I couldn't do it. But I was so close to being able to do it and I recognized that so many other people have that one thing that has just been blocking them from doing something and they can smell it, they can taste it, they can see it but they can't quite reach it.

I'm excited about being able to share that with other people. So yes I'm excited. This summer I'm going to be riding as many rollercoasters as I can and having a good time with it.

Being the nice guy that you are, can you share with us your feelings of betrayal from Jeff? Gameplay trumped somebody's word.

Michael Dorsey:
Obviously I've had some time to really reflect on this because it didn't happen just last night in real life. Since then Jeff and I have talked and we're actually in a great place right now. He had his reasons for what he did and regardless of how it went out the fact is that even without his vote for me, I was still going to go home.

It's one of those things that was unfortunate. To be honest with you, Gina made a comment early on in the episode. She said that we were stupid for not voting her out because she was a big threat. And I guess some would argue that they would have been stupid for not voting me out because I was a big threat.

That's just kind of how I see it. And because that's not my game, that I went in with my mind made up that I wasn't going to do it that way. And everybody has their reasons for why they do something. I wanted to make sure that by the time it was all said and done I could look back and say that I kept my integrity in tact and I believe that I did.

Since most of us are not going to ever get to the ranch, can you tell us about a day on the ranch? Like when the alarm clock goes in the morning, what is your schedule?

Michael Dorsey:
Typically it depends on if it's a production day or if it's just a regular dark day where the cameras aren't really running. But most of the time we were up and at it no later than 7 o'clock in the morning. I know for me we were at it sometimes as we got later into the season we would actually go for hikes in the morning to catch the sunrise over the mountains.

Any time that you had to workout was precious because it was a very competitive house as you can see. And so morning would start even before breakfast you'd do probably a couple laps around what we know as the presidential mile of the ranch. And it's about a mile. Each lap is about a mile and you'll a couple laps of those just to get yourself warmed up, get your metabolism rolling, have a little bit of breakfast and then get started with the rest of the day, either you'll have a workout with the trainers or you'll have your own workout. Of course on a production day there may be different things that we have to do with that.

It typically would end by like 9 o'clock, 10 o'clock at night. Like about 9 o'clock, 10 o'clock at night, you were ready to go bed. We weren't always allowed to go to bed at 9 or 10 o'clock. But I mean if we could be in bed by 9 or 10 o'clock, we were probably in it. I know for the most part I'm a night owl and by 11 o'clock I was staring at my eyelids.

It was wonderful seeing you with your wife and your son on the ranch. But is there any part of you that kind of wishes that you hadn't seen them this week considering you just missed out on being safe?

Michael Dorsey:
No not at all. As a matter of fact one of the things about being on the show is you have two choices. You live for the show or you live for after the show. And you know what, I was living for after the show. And it was important for my wife to be there to get a piece of what I went through on the ranch so that she could understand the context of it when I got home. Because one of the complaints that other contestants have is that they tell their family members about it but they just don't catch the vision because they weren't there.

I was blessed that my wife actually got to spend a day there and it as a busy day and she got to really see whoa this is what you're doing, whoa this is what's happening, whoa. And when I got home, it made it all the much more easier where she understood, like she understood yes you've got to go get your burn, you've got to eat by a certain time, like she really caught the vision. So no not at all. I think it was incredible that it happened.

How did it feel when Danni sacrificed her chance to see her sister for you?

Michael Dorsey:
It was an awesome moment. And I'm going to tell you something. There was not a dry eye in the place. The entire crew had gone in on it. They had really - as a matter fact, some of the guys were mad at me. They said, ???Why you going to have me cry, big Mike???? And it was just an awesome moment because for so long I would put my needs after everybody else's. And Danni knew that I needed to see my wife. You know, she just knew that.

The fact that she was willing to make that sacrifice for me spoke volumes of her character and also just spoke volumes of the fact that there's somebody else who gets it, who sees it because I would have done the same thing if I had the opportunity. And so for her to do that I mean I told her that she's not going to be able to get me to stop saying thank you because that was just awesome that she did that for me.

It was obviously a Valentine's Day themed episode. Have you got any big plans for Thursday?

Michael Dorsey:
I'm taking my wife to do something cool. We're actually going to go to a Cirque du Soleil show, so I'm excited about that. Yes definitely so that's going to be nice, just something different to celebrate because we actually haven't really had a date night since I've been home and this is going to be an opportunity for us to get away so we're going to take advantage of it and enjoy ourselves in D.C.

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