Nathan, a 25-year-old financial advisor from Colorado Springs, CO, was ousted after his White Team -- which was trained by Jillian Michaels -- posted the lowest weight-loss percentage at the season's second weekly elimination weigh-in. As the team member with the lowest weight-loss percentage, he was then automatically eliminated.
During a Thursday conference call with reporters, Nathan talked about his short-lived experience on The Biggest Loser and what he took away from participating in the season.
What did you learn from being on the ranch that you'll take with you?
Nathan Montgomery: I learned a lot while I was on the show. The biggest thing that I think I learned from the show, and it was from Jillian, is that fitness in my life and health is not about how I look to people and how people -- what they think of me. Health to me should be what I'm capable of; It's what I can make my body do.
And so, when I focus on that, I can better myself every single day and not worry about what other people think. It's not about the size of the clothing. It's, "Can I climb that mountain? Can I beat my time running a mile?" -- things like that. And so, bettering myself everyday is really important to me.
Nathan Montgomery: So I was pretty scared on Day 1 that I didn't really know what I was getting myself into. I fell down on the treadmill three times in 10 minutes... and so, I knew it was going to be tough. But I thought, you know, I'm a big guy, well maybe not that big. I thought I could maybe handle it.
But to have Jillian in your face yelling at you and pushing you, it's unlike anything you've ever experienced unless you're actually there. So it was really tough, but the thing that was most unexpected for me was the mental part of it.
I was going in there looking for the physical change, looking to change my body and look good, and I realized real quick that that's the smallest part of it. It's more about getting your mind right and getting your mind around being healthy -- not just for the show but for the rest of your life.
What's your favorite memory from the show?
Nathan Montgomery: My favorite memory from the show, I think, was my really big turning point. And that's when -- On Day 1, Jillian asked us to think about why is it that we gained weight, why is it that we're fat, because being fat is a choice.
And so, it took me awhile to think about that and it showed it on TV when I was talking to Jillian, and it really taught me that the reason why I decided to make this decision was because I feel like I've never been good at anything and to stay overweight gives me a great excuse why I'm not good at anything.
And she taught me that if I would just stop worrying about what other people think or stop over-judging myself and just be willing to be a novice at something for a little bit to get good at something, then I'll get good at something. And that really stripped away at my layers and why I made this decision. It just really helped me into the right mindset of losing weight.
Did you feel like you had a big support system with the other contestants?
Nathan Montgomery: Absolutely. On the ranch, I was so surprised at how we were such a big family. Seeing some other reality television shows, you see a couple people get along but not everybody's friends. To be a part of this season of this show was the exact opposite. Every single person was a friend.
And when [Cate Laughlin] came in and sat me down and was talking to me -- talking through the day with me and really kind of breaking down the day and what's important, it helped me realize that this isn't a Red, White and Blue Team. This is three different colors all on one team, and we kept that mentality -- every single person -- throughout the whole show. It was miraculous. It was awesome.
How did you keep yourself motivated once you got home?
Nathan Montgomery: For me, my time there was only two weeks, but you learn so much in two weeks on the ranch. I learned a lot from Jillian and the other trainers about what's important, and for me, it wasn't just about coming home and looking good by the finale. It was coming home and starting my new lifestyle that I'm going to maintain for the rest of my life.
And so, coming home -- I don't think it was too hard for me because I was in the right mindset and the mentality of, "I've gotta do this for me. I've gotta do this for my girlfriend and I need to live a healthy lifestyle not for three months, not for six months, but forever."
And so, what I learned on the ranch, mostly the mental part of it, made things so much easier. I had a real breakthrough and it's something that I will never forget.
Were viewers seeing the TV Jillian or did you get to experience the softer side of Jillian?
Nathan Montgomery: What you're seeing on TV is the "real deal" Jillian. There are two sides of her. There's kind of "in the gym," and she can tell when you're not motivated. She can tell when you're not in it. And so, when that's the case, you get the really mean Jillian -- the one who's in your face, pushing you. That's all absolutely 100% percent real.
But as you can tell in Episode 2, when you really commit yourself to her and commit yourself to the process, she knows that you're pushing yourself and she doesn't have to push you right back. So she lightens up and she's there as your teammate to push you in different ways. She's a very multifaceted trainer. And those are just two of her types, both of which are very effective and 100% percent real.
In most of the prior The Biggest Loser seasons, the editions have started out with a yellow line in which a team must deliberate and vote someone off collectively. However, so far this season, there's been a red line which comes with an automatic elimination. How do you feel about the red line versus vote-off eliminations?
Nathan Montgomery: For me, I was happy that I didn't have to vote anybody home, because like I previously stated, we were all a big family and I loved everybody there. It was like going to war with these people, and there's really no tighter bond than that. The red line, unfortunately, it is that instant elimination.
And being one of the people who got instantly eliminated, it's unfortunate. I don't really get a chance to fight for myself to stay. But it is what it is and I was really sad that it was only Week 2, because Week 2 is so unpredictable onThe Biggest Loser ranch. So I just became a victim of the Week 2 jinx with the red line. It was just a deadly combination.
In your bio, you mentioned you were very athletic and active in high school, but after high school, you kind of lost it. Why do you think it's important to maintain good health in the earlier years?
Nathan Montgomery: I've always eaten bad. That was something that happened. I ate a lot of fast food all the time. Home-cooked meals were pretty rare, but it was okay -- I mean, it's never okay. But it was okay for my image because I played sports all day long. It's all I did. I moved out to a new area for high school and I had no friends.
I started playing baseball, which I played my whole life, and I wasn't the absolute best on the team. And so, to me, that makes me think in my head that people are judging me and thinking I'm not the best or I'm not good.
And so, that discouraged me from playing. It was then when I started living a sedentary lifestyle at home and got into different things like my social life or just playing video games and eating the same way -- which in turn, I gained a lot, a lot of weight.
When that happens, and you want to go back and play baseball, well now you're even worse than you were before, so what's the point? And it's that bad mentality that you get yourself into. And that's why I'm glad that this season ofThe Biggest Loser is focusing on children and teens, because it's so important that these kids realize that life is about them.
Life is not about what people think about you. Life is what you think about you. And if you can get up every morning and do what you want to do, regardless of what people think, and just live an active lifestyle and enjoy everything life has to offer, you're going to be so much healthier and so much happier and not have to go through these really sad moments that I have gone through.
Nathan Montgomery: I think that this show is so important and it's so helpful. When Nikki quit, we didn't want her to leave, absolutely not. I mean, not only was she one of our team members, but she was part of our Biggest Loser family, and you never want to see anybody quit on themselves because that's what gotten us to this point.
So we were really sad to see that and the butterfly effect of that was detrimental. For me, I can say I did not ever want to quit. I think there were times where maybe I had a mental block, like maybe in the first workout and I thought maybe I couldn't push past where I actually could, but I never wanted to quit.
Jillian kicked me out of the gym and I didn't want to leave, but I had to. And there's actually a reason why she does what she does, and it helped me out. But no, I never wanted to quit. And if I could ever go back [to the ranch], I would.