Valerie Phillips: I'm lost with the 'Loser' contestants

Published: Tuesday, May 3 2011 3:00 p.m. MDT

Then two weeks ago, the vote came down between Moses Kinikini (Kaylee's dad) and Olivia. Moses asked to be voted off, after Olivia said she wouldn't be able to have children if she didn't lose more weight. At around 170 pounds, Olivia's plea seemed a bit stretched. But at least she showed the desire to stay.

Moses' elimination meant one less vote to save daughter Kaylee when she fell below the yellow line last week. But she had already tried to go home several weeks before, so it wasn't a heartbreaking good-bye.

To their credit, most of these players shed an impressive amount of weight after going home, so they didn't give up on their fitness goals. I wouldn't be surprised to see one of them win the $100,000 at-home prize. Justin Pope, who garnered respect as a leader, continues to "call out" people in his Logan hometown to get in shape. Deni has said she considers herself "The Biggest Winner," for the show's opportunity, and I hope sometime I bump into her in a local Zumba class.

In the midst of greedy, ruthless, reality shows, it can be refreshing to see people willing to sacrifice themselves for others instead of the win-at-any-cost mentality.

However, many fans tune in to "The Biggest Loser" to get inspired by players' determination to win their weight battles. It helps us go the extra mile on the treadmill or pass up a dessert to better our own health. It's disillusioning to watch them throw in the towel, especially when thousands of other obese people audition every year for a chance to be on the show.

But in the end, these are real people, not storybook characters, and they apparently know their limits.

Valerie Phillips is the former Deseret News food editor. She blogs at www.chewandchat.blogspot.com

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