In the weeks that Sione Fa was on the ranch, he emerged as a fierce competitor — and a very hot guy! Regarding all the new attention from ladies, “I would be lying if I said I didn’t like it,” he admits. “My wife and I just laugh about it and I guess I’m flattered. It’s a compliment and hopefully it’ll get me somewhere!” He and his cousin and partner, Filipe, also made a dramatic defection from Jillian’s team to Bob's in week 10, after several tearful outbursts. “We worked out six to eight hours a day on the physical side of it, but the emotional side is just as intense," says Sione. “You’re away from your kids, you’re away from your wife, you’re away from your family. You have to rely on your partner. Filipe and I were close — just like brothers — before but we became even
closer. I was surprised at how emotional it got, but sometimes it just takes that. Looking back on it, I’d do it in a heartbeat again.”
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Why do you think you lost only three pounds this week?
I think everybody just has their weeks when they have a low number. I mean, obviously this was the first time I fell below the yellow line. It was just my week.
Do you regret eating so much during the temptation?
It was kind of crazy. But it was a lot of power being handed out. Obviously when you look back, I ate all that stuff and maybe that affected the weight because I basically got kicked off by a pound. And, yeah, maybe I shouldn’t have. But I’d probably do it again.
Why did you and Filipe leave Jillian to train with Bob?
Her training style is awesome. I don’t take anything away from that. When we did train together, I gave it everything I had physical-wise. It’s just, emotionally we connected better with Bob. And obviously that showed. With Jillian, it was just a conflict in personal issues more than anything.
How much have you lost so far?
A little over 130 pounds right now. I’m currently at about 235.
When did you realize you wanted to be a trainer yourself ?
It’s just I knew that I couldn’t go back to my old life and my old career. I wanted to make health and fitness a part of my life forever. I’m still in the process of taking the test to get certified, but my plan is to create a business.
What did you learn from Bob and Jillian that you’ll use as a trainer?
I’d like to take some from both. I learned a lot from Jillian on the cardio — getting your lungs and your heart in shape. And then with Bob, a lot of strength training. But on Bob’s side I’d like to take a lot of the emotional: we always kept our families in mind, the idea that we want to be here as long as we can on this Earth, living a healthy life and not just the quick fix. I’d love to adapt that into my training methods. This is not “buy ten training sessions and then it’s over,” this is a lifestyle change.
What have you done to pass along the things you’ve learned to your family and why is that so important to you?
At one point in time, everybody in my family had been thinner. We weren’t always this overweight. And just being able to show my journey through weight loss on TV, it’s just kind of opened their eyes and seen the hard work that it really takes. I haven’t really had to hound my sisters or my brother. They’ve actually come to me. They’ve had some pretty touching moments where they say, “You motivate me and I just want to know is it really that hard and can I do it?” Just to be able to tell them, you know, “It is the hardest thing probably you’ll ever have to do, but it’s worth it.” It’s been great because they’re doing it. Since I started the show, my brother has lost about 40 pounds. My sister, from the time we aired the little boot camp style thing on the episode last night, she’s lost 12. It just seems like they really want it.
There’s been a lot of talk on the show about how much eating is a part of your Polynesian culture. Has it been hard to break through that?
Yeah. When we get together obviously as a family and culture, you don’t count calories. You just pile your plate as high as you can get it and go at it. And a lot more people, when I go to those gatherings, are a lot more conscious on what they’re eating. Weight is a big issue in the culture, but with me and Filipe doing this journey together, they’re seeing it that we’re happier. And culture or not, when you’re overweight you’re overweight and you have to deal with the problems of being overweight and all the diseases out there and possibly dying young. I think it’s finally clicked with them. It’s fun: I’ve actually been to a luau where they baked a lot of chicken, made brown rice and
that is unheard of! So this is a lot of people being affected by it.
Has it been easier to do ceremonial dances now that you’re more fit?
My brother and I were just messing around the other day going through some of the dances and you have to be a little limber in a lot of these dances. I notice a big difference just cardio-wise. It just feels better doing it. You’re not focusing all the fat jiggling on the dances; you focus more on the dance.
Would you incorporate them into your training?
I’d love to not only share this with my culture, but share my culture with others. I had the idea the other day of doing a Polynesian workout!