It’s a precarious position this father-son team has found themselves in, in fact Mike Morelli called it a worst-case scenario. They are part of the four finalists on Biggest Loser 7, but both Mike and his father, Ron Morelli, fell below the yellow line in the last week on the ranch. Neither were eliminated, but only one will advance as the third finalist to compete against Tara and Helen for the $250,000 prize and title of Biggest Loser.
“I hope that America votes Mike up,” pleads his father. A similar situation occurred with husband and wife duo Heba and Ed in season six, and fans ignored their pleas to send Heba to the finale, instead voting for Ed. When asked if they fear the same situation, Ron responded “Mike’s won enough hearts that Heba didn’t.”
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And won hearts he has. Mike’s popularity amongst women young and old, single and attached, seems to grow with each pound he sheds. He said he’s oblivious to the extra attention right now, as he’s focused on the finale, but maybe in a few months that tide will change! That’s likely as he heads back to the Michigan State University campus this fall. He said that’s when finding normalcy will finally settle in. Because of his experience on the Biggest Loser he’s returning as an athletic training major, a switch from human biology.
You’ll also find Mike running a half-marathon May 31 in Ann Arbor. He said if he runs another full marathon, he’ll do it right this time and train properly. Ron doesn’t see himself running anymore marathons, but is glad to say that he did it. They each completed a 26.2 mile course through varied California terrain in week 18. Due to separate injuries, they were both forced to walk, rather than run, the entire way. Mike’s final time was 8:58:02, which earned him $10,000 toward his choice charity, St. Jude’s. Ron cleared the finish line with a time of 13:15:48, with a lot of support from former contestants like Bernie, Michelle, Ali and even trainer Bob Harper, and gave his check to Active Faith. Toward the end he said all he could think was “just get me off this damn sand!”
Ron and Mike aren’t the only Morelli men expected to debut their new, fit bodies at the May 12 live finale. Son and younger brother Max earned his own recognition this season. He’s 17-years-old, too young to join the show, and weighs around 400 pounds. It’s been an emotional journey for Max to see the success enjoyed by his father and brother, and it’s given him the fire to win his own weight battle. Ron says Max has lost 20 pounds in just seven weeks, and reminds that is a healthy rate of weight loss for someone outside the ranch. Ron says they were hoping to “carve 100 pounds off of him by finale,” but both Bob and Jillian recommended weight loss of about two to three pounds per week.
Both Ron and Mike walked away from the Biggest Loser ranch having learned a similar lesson — If you just do the work, if you make a plan and stick to it, the weight will come off. They remind that “If you’re waiting for your Biggest Loser moment to happen, don’t wait.”
May 6th, 2009