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Excusive Interview with Laura Denoux of The Biggest Loser: Couples

Posted on 04/17/2009 by Gina and Cast Interviews

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by David McAlpine and Gina Scarpa


This week, on The Biggest Loser: Couples, Laura and Kristin fell below the yellow line at the weigh-in.  Kristin lost 2 pounds while Laura gained 3 and was dealing with a fairly serious injury.  Though she asked her fellow players not to take her injury into account when voting, they couldn’t help but factor it in and she was eliminated from the competition. The Biggest Loser made sure to help Laura overcome her hip injury once she returned home and she is continuing on her weight loss journey as we speak.  Today, Laura took the time to speak to RealityWanted in an exclusive interview, opening up about her recovery and the challenges she faced on and off the ranch.


Q. David, RealityWanted: Whose idea was it to do The Biggest Loser?
A. Laura: Tara and I both went to the open castings in New York and Miami without even knowing that we were both applying at the same time. Tara had first attempted to go as a team with a woman she met on Craigslist.org (Tara is better at telling THAT story), but when the producers wanted Tara and not the woman, Tara called me and asked if I would be interested in going on the show. I told her that I was also applying and had just gone to the Open Casting Call 2 hours prior. It was meant to be!


Q. David, RealityWanted: What did you expect going into the show? Was your experience anything like you expected?
A. Laura: I knew that it was going to be hard work...but never as hard as it ACTUALLY was. I knew that the work outs were going to be hard, but I thought that because I used to workout and I used to play sports, that it was all going to be a piece of cake for me. I never thought it was going to be THAT hard. The two hour episodes don't show how long and hard the 3 workouts per day really were. No one can really understand what it's like to workout 6-8 hours per day, everyday, with Bob and Jillian, until you actually do it. Even just describing what it's like to someone is impossible!


Q. David, RealityWanted: What was the biggest challenge you faced while on The Biggest Loser?
A. Laura: My biggest challenge was deciding if I was going to stay with Jillian on her team, or go to Bob's team after she called me "the weakest link" and we had to decide who our trainer would be once we went to singles. But it was at that moment that made me realize how much Jillian had really done for me up until that point and how much I really loved and appreciated her. She was a great trainer and helped me with a lot of psychological problems that I had and my relationship with my family and people and food! Jillian and I are now good friends and I can't wait to see her again at the finale. I still think she could have handled things differently, and do think it really was the meanest thing she's ever done to someone...she said it, and everyone thought so too!


Q. David, RealityWanted: What do you think was the most important lesson you learned?
A. Laura: I learned to believe in myself. And to not take crap from people. I learned that I needed to make Laura happy first and foremost before I could make other people happy. My priorities were never in order, and now they are. I was always trying to please other people and always cared what people thought of me. I never believed in myself fully because I was always seeking that approval from other people. I learned that I needed to love myself in order for other people to respect and love me back. Loving myself and feeling good about myself is more important that loving food and eating.


Q. David, RealityWanted: It seemed like, especially after the blue and black teams formed, there was a lot of drama in the house. How did you manage to avoid most of it?
A. Laura: Honestly, I was trying to "fly under the radar" the entire time I was on the ranch. I just avoided drama period. I never got into fights with ANYONE and I never stirred up drama among myself or other people. No one could trust each other, but I knew I could always trust Tara, no matter what, even if people were trying to make me think she couldn't be trusted. My strategy from the very beginning was just to watch my diet, exercise, and not piss anyone off, so that I could fly under the radar, all the way to the final 3. And I think that if it weren't for my hip fracture, I definitely would have made it to the final 3. I think I flew under the radar pretty well most of the time, don't you?


Q. David, RealityWanted: On that note, you were the center of attention last week when you had the sole elimination vote. Why did you want the vote so bad? Was the decision between Sione and Helen a hard one?
A. Laura: Eveyone wanted the Vote...not because they wanted to vote someone off, but because whenever there was something that gave you POWER, you went for it. I just wanted to know that I would be safe and secure, so I knew that in order to feel safe and secure, I would need to go for the prize...then along the way I won $7,000, plus that golden ticket! YAY! The decision between Sione and Helen was pretty easy for me. Helen and I became extremely close when she joined Jillian's team when we went Black vs. Blue. Helen became like a mother to me and still today we are very close. We became close friends outside of Biggest Loser drama. We talked a lot about our life and she made me realize a lot about myself. Helen is an amazing woman. Sione and I were friends and got along, but Helen was near and dear to my heart. I just couldn't vote her off. Even if she was a "bigger threat."


Q. David, RealityWanted: Do you think you would have left this week if you didn't have an injury and it was still you and Kristin below the yellow line? Why or why not?
A. Laura: If it were not for my injury, I would have kept losing tons of weight, and would have never even fallen below that yellow line. Plus, even if I did fall below the yellow line, everyone saw Kristen as a HUGE threat and they would have voted her off immediately without even questioning it. Especially Mike and Ron. Mike knew that she was a bigger threat to him, and Ron would do it for his son to beat her. Felipe would have voted the same, to send me home and not Kristen. Not because of revenge for Sione, because I sent Sione home the week before, but because Kristen and Felipe were like best friends since the very beginning. Nothing would have broken their bond. I believe that Mike and Ron voted me home because they were trying to do what was best for me and my injury. Ron knew that I wanted to do more than I was supposed to be doing. He knew that I would probably try to sneak working out when I wasn't supposed to just because of all the pressure of being on the biggest loser ranch.


Q. David, RealityWanted: How have you been dealing with the injury at home? How is your hip doing?
A. Laura: I'm doing better, compared to when I left the ranch, but my hip is still fractured, and I have some lesions or what may be a pre-stress fracture on my left knee. When I left the ranch I was on a wheel chair for a couple of weeks, and then had to be in crutches for about 6 weeks after that. I'm now walking around, but I can not run or doing anything that would put any stress on my hip or knee. Most of my workouts consist of Biking/Spinning. I also go to physical therapy at SportFit and I also have a personal trainer at 24 Hour Fitness. Dealing with the injury is tough because I'm so used to working out so hard, and now I can't do nearly as much as I used to. It's really frustrating. I just wish I could get up and start running again.


Q. David, RealityWanted: What steps have you been taking to reach your goal for the finale?
A. Laura: My goal for the finale is to lose a total of 100 lbs. At this point I've been maintaining the same weight that I had when I left the ranch because of how hard it's been to lose weight with having this injury the whole time I've been home. I'm really watching my diet and I work out for about 2 hours every day after work, but it's still been a frustrating struggle to lose the weight. I want to weigh 150 lbs someday, but I now that goal will be obtainable once my injury is completely healed and I can really workout hard like I was before my injury. Now I just focus on my new job as the Heart Walk Director for the American Heart Association, and then immediately after work I go to the gym or physical therapy to work on my cardio, weights, and strengthening my hip and leg again. It's hard, but I know I can do it.



The Biggest Loser: Couples airs Tuesday nights at 8pm ET on NBC.


(Image courtesy of NBC)


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