The first big product placement of tonight’s premier of season 13 of The Biggest Loser is for Planet Fitness. Gone are the days of sweating off the pounds in a 24 Hour Fitness outfitted gym. Contestants and viewers a like better get used to seeing Planet Fitness, a cost effective chain that made headlines in 2006 for terminating a member’s contract for grunting too loudly.
Planet Fitness markets itself as a “Judgement Free Zone”, and offers fitness equipment and personal trainers at its over 400 locations around the U.S. Planet Fitness’ membership cost is a huge selling point. Working out shouldn’t be expensive, and at $10 a month, it’s appealing to those trying to save a little green.
@Mrod31183 tweeted: “Did the deed. Left Lifetime for Planet Fitness, much better deal with not a much overhead. Great facility here in the hills as well.”
Some aren’t convinced, though. While Planet Fitness may be perfectly acceptable if you have Bob or Dolvett pushing you along the way, many aren’t fans of the lack of services.
By Dani M. Stone
Lauren Lee is a big fan of Biggest Loser. She and her mother and fellow yellow team contestant, Gail Lee, watch every season and root for the winners. This season, they make up one of three parent/child teams on Biggest Loser 13 and they’ll need to root for each other when they’re not competing against each other. Spoiler alert: That’s this season’s shocking twist.
Lauren, 26, is a highly educated young woman from Poolesville, Maryland. She studied hard for years, receiving a bachelor’s degree in adult fitness from Marshall University, and a master’s degree in exercise science with an emphasis on cardiac rehabilitation. Though she’s proud of her education, she admits her studies kept her from eating right and exercising, which led to a significant weight gain in college. She regrets missing out on typical fun college shenanigans because she was self-conscious about her weight and even turned down dates because she just couldn’t find anything to wear.
Her motivation for trying out for Biggest Loser 13 was to help her mom get in shape, but at 246 pounds she knows she could also benefit from weight loss, healthy lifestyle changes, and all the advice and support the ranch has to offer. She knows if she can get in shape, her mind and body will finally be in sync and it will help her considerably with her occupation as an exercise physiologist.
Lauren knows there will always be temptations like vanilla ice cream (her favorite), or her parent’s homemade macaroni and cheese, but she’s committed to learning how to enjoy unhealthy food in moderation and learn to make healthy choices a part of her everyday lifestyle. Lauren looks forward to she and her mother both losing weight so they can be active as a family. She would also like to run a marathon and learn how to hang-glide. Wonder if mom will join her for THAT adventure?
By Dani M. Stone
Gail Lee’s epiphany for weight loss didn’t result from a particular incident or reading of a motivational poster. Instead, she had a heart-to-heart talk with her oldest daughter Lindsay, who shared how worried she was about Gail’s health. At 57-years old, 322 pounds, and on medication for diabetes, her family worried she might not be around to enjoy her husband of 32 years, her three children, and only granddaughter. Gail realized her family was right and now is happy to join her other daughter Lauren Lee as the yellow team on Biggest Loser 13.
Growing up in Bowling Green, Maryland with a younger brother, Gail survived polio and went on to have a happy, healthy childhood. By age 12 she was tall, just shy of six-feet tall, and though she wasn’t obese, she still felt self-conscious about her overall size. Gail attended Bowling Green State University with a triple major in special education, learning disabilities, and elementary education. She remained in good shape through college but after marriage and three pregnancies the weight started to slowly creep on. (more…)
By Dani M. Stone
Cassandra Sturos, 25, wants to “take New York City by storm.” She recently received her bachelor’s degree in English/writing from Northern Michigan University. She wants to be a writer, maybe a columnist, and she knows New York City is the place to pursue her dreams, but at 239 pounds she lacks the confidence to make her big move. When Cassandra tried out for the Biggest Loser competition she invited her grandmother, Nancy Rajala, to join her. This year they make up the orange team, the only grandparent/grandchild team on Biggest Loser 13.
Cassandra is no stranger to excess weight and the teasing that often comes with it. As the oldest of 10 children growing up in Fowlerville, Michigan, Cassandra remembers someone taunting her about her weight in the second grade. It immediately and forever-after affected her self-esteem. As many people do, she sought comfort in food and continued to gain weight. (more…)
By Dani M. Stone
Nancy Rajala considers the invitation from her granddaughter, Cassandra Sturos, to try out for the Biggest Loser competition to be nothing short of “divine intervention.” At 63, Nancy should be enjoying her retirement and spending time with her 55 grandchildren. Yes, 55. But instead, at 217 pounds, she has high blood pressure and feels depressed because she’s not the lively energetic person she used to be. Nancy and Cassandra are the only grandparent/grandchild team on this season of Biggest Loser 13.
To say Nancy is tough is an understatement. Raised in Farmington, Michigan with three siblings, Nancy was devastated by the loss of her father at just 13-years old. When she turned 14, her mother gave her a bus ticket, $70, and sent her off to get married. The marriage lasted only two years and at 17, she married her second husband and went on to have 13 children. The family had a successful drywall business and for the first time in a long time, Nancy was happy. Tragedy struck again when her husband developed heart failure and lung cancer. She was a widow at age 52. (more…)