Ed Brantley dishes on his ouster from 'The Biggest Loser: Families'
By John Bracchitta, 10/13/2008
When Ed Brantley, a 31-year-old chef from Raleigh, NC, was eliminated from The Biggest Loser: Families after not losing any weight at the show's fourth weigh-in, his wife Heba Salama, a 30-year-old pharmaceutical sales representative, briefly debated keeping him on the show because she felt he was due for a big weight loss the following week. She was right.
"That next week that I got back [home] I dropped ten pounds," Brantley told Reality TV World during a media conference call last Thursday. "I weighed myself seven days after the day I got home -- the day I got off the plane -- seven days after that. I had lost ten pounds."
Despite the drop, Brantley added did not regret the decision to leave the ranch so his wife could remain.
According to Brantley, his lack in Week 4 weight loss had not been a reflection of a lack of effort on his part.
"The body does betray you sometimes," he told reporters. "I may have lost a lot of fat weight that week, but I probably also gained a lot of muscle weight that probably just canceled out my weight loss for the week."
One regret Brantley did acknowledge was his team's decision to not follow through with his initial statement that his team wouldn't vote for the elimination of Tom Desrochers Sr. and L.T. Desrochers, the Gray Team members that were sent home after the show's second weigh-in.
"Everybody else in the house had voted for them anyway, even the people on their own team. So instead of ostracizing ourselves from the entire rest of the group based on those grounds, we just went with the rest of the group as to, you know, kind of save face with the rest of them," he told Reality TV World. "Don't get me wrong, I love LT and Big Tom to death. They are some of my favorite people and also it wouldn't really have mattered anyway."
"I really wanted to vote for them," Brantley explained. "In retrospect I wish I just, you know, would've gone with my heart and voted to keep them there even if it was our only vote and it would've been the only vote for them."
Brantley said he now weighs 245 lbs. -- down 90 lbs. from his original 335 lbs. weigh-in weight -- and has a 34-inch waist. Both are in striking distance of his final goals of weighing 180 lbs. with a 32-inch waist.
While he told reporters that he had felt a definitive change in his energy levels since going on The Biggest Loser, he said that he had not truly noticed how different he looked he watched the post-show update that aired at the conclusion of Wednesday night's broadcast.
"Honestly it really wasn't until last night when I saw [the update], you know, the transformation like stuff on film. And I was like 'Wow. I was like really fat and now I'm like not so fat anymore,'" he told reporters.
Brantley attributed his ongoing weight-loss success to maintaining the workout techniques and discipline he had learned while on The Biggest Loser ranch.
"Out there [on The Biggest Loserranch] you were forced into a situation of complete discipline. There's always a camera on you, so there's no sneaking food... you can sneak the food but somebody is going to show you being a dummy on TV, and you don't want to do that," he told reporters. "So basically I just - I wasn't like pretending there was like cameras in the corner or anything like that. But I just - I took that home with me."
Brantley said he'd also changed the way he goes about working as a chef. In addition to now limiting his taste-testing to specialized orders, he now also spits out the food instead of eating it.
"I'll put it in my mouth but then I'll spit it into a napkin and throw it away, wash my hands, whatever," he told reporters. Then everything else like, you know, my classics as it were, it's all recipes. It's all like written down... I know I don't have to taste it."
Brantley added that, as a food addict, he has also worked out a loose schedule that still lets him have the occasional indulgence -- so long as he makes up for it in the gym the following day.
"I'll just really try to save it up until like, you know, 10 or 13 days and then just have a day -- not where I'll really like blow it out or do anything crazy like eat a dozen donuts or anything like that -- But I might have a hot dog at the fairgrounds kind of thing or just something to just tame the demons, you know," he told reporters.
In addition to his diet struggles, Brantley also had to deal with his separation from his still-competing wife, who he wasn't able to communicate with.
"I think the only update I got was like every week that I didn't see her I was just like yes, she's still there. Awesome," he told reporters.
Brantley said he couldn't provide specifics about his reunion with Heba but insisted it would be memorable.
"Our reunion is - when you get to see it you're just probably not even going to believe it," he told reporters. "You're going to be doing back flips. You're going to be like up in a chair, like screaming. That's just all I can say about it."