Biggest Loser
Episode 1

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The Magical Blistery Tour
inish, but of course looks very disappointed. She says that she's not afraid to tell the world that she's going to lose the weight. She wants to finish what her brother started. Lisa and Allie are the Pink Team, which is lucky for them since the Pink Team has traditionally been so kick-ass. They embrace in the limo, which is lovely to see.

The final stop of the Magical Blistery Tour is Boston! I really COULD have run into this crew at Taco Bell. Terrifying. Season five finalist Mark is there along with Jillian, and welcomes potential contestants Alfredo, Elizabeth, and Brendan. Jillian hates on clam chowder, which I think is a low blow. Brendan is first to weigh-in. He's a 32 year old teacher from Beantown itself. He also has an exceptionally hairy back. Brendan was always fat, and went on a diet when he was 13. He lost some weight, then gained it back, and then became a human yo-yo. His whole life has been like this. After Brendan graduated from college he became a school police officer in inner city Boston, and then became a special education teacher. Well, now I automatically love him. Brendan teaches a wellness program at his school, but feels like kind of a hypocrite since he drinks soda in the morning and eats pastries for breakfast. Three years ago Brendan was engaged to the love of his life, but broke off the engagement. He attributes this to lack of self-love, and is still pretty sad about it. Brendan's starting weight is 362 pounds.

Elizabeth is a 30-year old medical assistant from Boston. She's divorced, and tells us that she weighed about 125 pounds when she first got married and was happy with herself. But her husband was verbally and physically abusive, and made her feel ugly. As a result she lost her self-esteem and gained about 90 pounds. Elizabeth says that she's gotten used to being as big as she is, which is scary to her. She doesn't feel like she's living her life to the fullest, and wants to make a change. Elizabeth's starting weight is 244 pounds.

Finally we have Alfredo. He's a 43-year old commodities trader from Staten Island. With such a calorie-laden name, this guy didn't have a chance. Alfredo has been married for 23 years and has three kids. He's a type II diabetic and on eight pills a day as well as insulin. His doctors told him that if he doesn't lose weight he'll be dead within five years. And yet, he really enjoys pizza. Alfredo used to be a marine, and was a rock-hard 195 pounds. When he came back from the Gulf War, he blew up to 290 pounds. Alfredo relates food and success, and the more successful he became as a commodities trader, the more he ate. Now, he weighs a very serious 367 pounds. He tells the crowd that he wants to save his life, and is there for his family. He promises them that he's going to do it.

The Boston crew has the step challenge. Brendan takes off fast, but starts to slow down at 50 steps. Jillian coaches all three along the way. Brendan shows us his tattoo, which reads, "Self respect is the fruit of discipline." Intriguing. Alfredo is hurting everywhere, but thinks of his family and keeps pushing through. Elizabeth starts to have pain in her chest, and Jillian hands her an inhaler. She tries to push through it, but eventually feels her chest closing in on her. Jillian tells her to relax, and then Elizabeth gets super woozy and moves off the step. Her eyes get all googly and she has to lay down. EMTs are called. Meanwhile, Alfredo is first to 500 steps, followed by Brendan. Elizabeth gets oxygen and tubes all over, and tells us that she felt like her life was over when she realized she didn't make it on the show. You can't help but feel bad for her. She cries and cries and Fredo gives her a giant hug. Mark announces that Elizabeth is conscious and didn't want to go to the hospital, but the show insisted that she go. Everyone gives her a round of applause in absentia. Alfredo and Brendan get their black shirts, and step in their limo. Boston and New York -- who'd have thunk it?

This season: Aha! The seven rejected contestants are perhaps not rejected at all! Also, beatings. And a weigh-in unlike we've ever seen -- half of the contestants will be below the yellow line. And marine training! And drama! And emotional breakdowns. And Dr. Phillian. And Dr. Huizenga. And dramatic weight loss! You know, the usual.

Potes enjoys long walks on the beach and eating cookies while watching The Biggest Loser. You can email her at

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Biggest Loser




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