Stephanie Anderson didn't become the The Biggest Loser - she was sent home after Koli convinced her friends that she was manipulating them - but she did change her life and find love with contestant Sam Poueu. Now, Stephanie, who has been giving In Touch readers exclusive insight into every episode, weighs in on life at the ranch from a new perspective. This week, former winners Erik Chopin and Helen Phillips visited the campus to talk to the contestants about life after the finale. "Now that I'm home, I've tried to connect myself to as many previous contestants because as much as we share our experience with our family, friends and all the viewers, no one else knows what it's like," Stephanie tells In Touch. "Helen was very, very thin when she won and I think she got a lot of flack for that. Now, she looks healthy and happy now, like she's found her comfort level. Erik was muscular and lean, and he kept it off for a year and then put it back on. That's something that I know all of us contestants are afraid of."
For more with Stephanie, click here.
This week, Koli really made it clear that he's in it to win it.
I guess they have one week left, and the warm fuzzies, "We're all here to get healthy," is gone and they're all being real. They want that spot in the final four. They're all going home. If you still "need" to be there, I'm worried. I was surprised at how blunt Koli was. This is an assumption, but I felt like he was frustrated that Sam was gone, versus "I'm better than you."
They seem to be realizing that it was bad strategy to send Sam home.
They didn't realize it until they learned there was a red line. But I think people were mad at Koli, because he was game-playing. So I think they wanted to send Sam home because they didn't want him to have Sam's support.
Do you think Daris was wise to take the one-pound advantage over the $10,000?
No! In season 7, Tara was given the same option, and told that second place would get whatever she didn't want. I thought, "Sunshine snuck up on Koli and got second place, so she'll get whatever he doesn't want." But Tara took the $10,000 and she gave a great reason: She said, "This is the last week. If I can't earn that spot, I shouldn't have it. I can do it on my own." And she didn't need it, so she got $10,000 and she got into the final four. I know that Daris errs on the side of caution, and he's one of the smallest people, so in that respect, I understand. But I wish he had taken the money and also gotten into the final four.
What did you think of the videos, where they watched their journey so far?
I was touched by every one of them. When Ashley said, "I remember that," I realized that at that point, they haven't seen anything. They're not watching the show like we are. I'd like to see some of my earlier footage. I don't remember what I said to myself. We can hold onto that forever, which is even better than a photo on the fridge. For anyone who's doing it at home, document your journey and use it as motivation to push yourself and to remind yourself that you don't want to go back. I just put up a "Before" picture on Facebook, because I want to remember, come May 25 when I step out on that stage, where I started. I have all of the episodes on my TiVo, and it's full. My friend is coming over on Saturday and we're putting them on DVDs. I'll make a copy for my mom and Sam. Of course I want to keep it forever: Not only is it how I met Sam and how my mom saved her life, but how I became who I am today.
Sunshine went home, even though she was a favorite.
She was a favorite contestant, but I never thought she was heavy enough. The less weight you have to lose, the harder it is. That's where she's getting. Realistically, based on numbers, Daris and Koli are going to have to figure it out. They've lost a lot of weight. Daris would win right now if they did it based on percentage, but what he doesn't have on his side is time. Michael and Ashley have time on their side. I think they all deserve to be there and they've worked really hard. Do I agree with all of their paths to get there? No. I think Ashley and Daris cut the cleanest path. We'll have to see. I'm not worried about them getting to the final, I'm worried about all of us after the finale, including me. How do we all make sure we're not one of the 50 percent who put the weight back on? As Michael said, it's not over when the finale is over. As long as everyone remembers that, we'll be good.