WARNING: This post contains details of an extreme weightloss plan, and might be triggering for some readers.
On Tuesday night (US time), Rachel Frederickson was crowned the winner of the American franchise of The Biggest Loser. By Thursday, her face had been plastered across the Internet.
Yesterday, we reported:
When the winner of America’s The Biggest Loser stepped out onto the stage this week, the reaction from the audience – and the internet – wasn’t the usual polite applause and surprised excitement.
It was total and utter shock.
The contestant, 24-year-old Rachel Frederickson, who used to weigh 260lbs (117kg) – now weighed just 105lbs (47kg). She had lost 60% of her body weight since first entering the competition.
She didn’t look fit, or healthy, or strong – she looked skeletal.
The majority of Rachel’s weightless occurred in the 14 weeks it took to film the earlier episodes of the show. But when she left the confines of the Biggest Loser compound, Rachel didn’t so much maintain her weight, as keep dropping. Steadily.
If the reaction from the judges was anything to go by, Rachel’s body significantly changed in the time between her leaving the show and coming back for the ‘big reveal’ episode.
When Rachel stepped out on the stage, Bob Harper and Jillian Michaels looked surprised. Jillian halts in her clapping and mouths the words ‘oh my god’, while Bob looks uncomfortable.
Rachel has since spent the rest of her week answering questions from the media about her dramatic weightloss. The most interesting of which was phone press conference she did with a bunch of US outlets. Here is some of what Rachel said:
Are you at your goal weight now?
You know, I am! I’m very excited to be in this next part of my journey as my body balances and it really kind of finds its rhythm in my own lifestyle. So I’m adding that to work. I’ve been working part-time for my voiceovers so I’m going back to full-time. I’m flitting around with the exercises I do and trying tons of new recipes.
So is your routine going to change after the finale?
It is yeah, you know, now I’m really in maintenance mode, so now it’s going to be about finding either doing a yoga class this day or a spin class this day. I think I’m even going to try dance classes, because I don’t have a lot of rhythm but I feel like it’d be a lot of fun to just add totally new things in.
What was your daily schedule like once you got home from the ranch, leading up to the big finale? What was your day by day routine?
Sure, well, I work out really hard. So I’m a freelance voiceover artist, so I audition throughout the day. I actually have a walking treadmill that I can edit while I work out. While I’m working, I can be on my treadmill.
I followed The Biggest Loser exercise and healthy eating routine, so I actually eat five times a day because it’s better for your metabolism. I eat a protein in every meal, and then when I had down time, my butt was in the gym!
I was on the spin bike, I was at the exercise classes, I was swimming in the pool, and just connecting, too, with all the people in the classes — which was my favorite part. I hid myself so much, so to be able to go to these classes and make connections with the motivation in the room, that was the best part about all of it.
Could you elaborate on your workout routine a little bit more, like how many hours a day were you pushing yourself leading up to the finale?
When I’m walking and I’m working on my treadmill, I work kind of all day. So, I’m walking or I’m standing. Before, if you saw my casting video, I was sitting and eating candy bars, so I put that stool on the treadmill. So now I’ve actually gotten good at dusting off and some work, and then I would take maybe three or four classes a day and just really have fun with all the people in the room.
It was pretty cool! I’d be in Zumba and then I’d be going to spin class, and actually, I never used to like running. And so now, I really like running. So I’ve been out running and I even went home over the holidays to Minnesota and I went running outside. I don’t know how they do it because they get all those ice crystals on your eyelashes, and I’m like, “I don’t know, it’s too cold! I’m already a freeze bunny there.”
Now, when you look in the mirror, what do you see?
Oh gosh, I just see a strong, confident woman, and you know, I feel great. I’ve never felt this great and it’s very exciting.
While it’s wonderful to hear Rachel is happy with where she is at in life, her exercise regime seems shockingly extreme. Her interviews and post-show body have prompted many of the show’s fans to question whether Rachel has taken her dedication to weight loss too far.
Do you watch The Biggest Loser? Do you think that shows like this are a healthy way to lose weight?
If you need help or support you can call the Butterfly Foundation support line on 1800 334 673.