Shellay Cremen talks about her elimination from 'The Biggest Loser'
By John Bracchitta, 10/16/2008
Shellay Cremen, a 51-year-old stay-at-home mom from Royal Oak, MI who was eliminated from The Biggest Loser: Families on this week's broadcast, wasn't upset about the twist that left her on a different team than her daughter Amy Cremen, a 26-year-old purchasing department representative from Auburn Hills, MI.
In fact, she was pleased with it.
"I was happy because I actually got to stay with my same team members, we just gained [Phillip Parham] and lost Amy," Cremen told Reality TV World during a media conference call on Wednesday.
Cremen said that Amy's success throughout the competition -- which undoubtedly made her appealing to the other team -- as well as their sharing of a room and the addition of a male contestant to her previously all-female group had eased the transition.
"I was sad for the fact that she was not going to be around there, just with her good weight loss numbers," she told Reality TV World. [But] we still shared a room together and we were still there together, so it wasn't as bad as if she had to leave."
"[Amy] has amazed me because she is so much stronger and more athletic than I ever could have imagined," she added to reporters later. I really think that she, in my opinion, has a very good chance at winning."
Another contestant that Cremen became extremely close with during her time at The Biggest Loserranch was Black team teammate Coleen Skeabeck, a 23-year-old receptionist from Cleveland, OH who regretfully cast the deciding vote that eliminated Cremen from the competition. Cremen was reduced to tears when reliving her elimination and said that she still gets emotional when thinking of Skeabeck and how hard the elimination was on her.
"Coleen and I became very close. Actually, Amy said to me one day 'Why don't you just go move in with Coleen," Cremen said wryly in between sobs to reporters. "Just being there with her dad, there wasn't a lot of talk about her mother and we just hit it off. She has a great personality."
Cremen also said that she was not surprised by her elimination and "had a feeling" in the days before the weigh-in that she may be booted. She added that her plan going into the weigh-in had been to partner with Parham and eliminate Renee Wilson, a 46-year-old event manager from Ft. Worth, TX. Cremen thought that the additional pressure placed on Wilson's daughter Michelle Aguilar, a 26-year-old assistant director from Ft. Worth, TX, following the elimination would drive her from the competition as well.
However, Cremen added that she had understood the rationale behind her departure as well.
"I weighed the least of anybody from the first day. In getting Philip onto our team, Phillip was heavier and he would lose more weight than I would," she told reporters.
One of Cremen's biggest regrets during her time on the show was a continued indifference towards Heba Salama, a 30-year-old pharmaceutical sales representative from Raleigh, NC, as she took control of several of the show's events and challenges and manipulated them to her advantage.
"I would say Heba did have control issues," Cremen told reporters. "My regret over everything I did was to not eat the [peanut butter cups in the second Temptation Challenge]. I should have just gone for it because what better control to have than to make the teams. [But] we all just kind of fell, once again, into Heba's thinking and let her have the control."
Cremen did have complimentary things to say about her trainer Jillian Michaels, whom she thought was tough and confrontational but also effective.
"She just told me that she felt kinda like I just didn't give myself enough credit for things," Cremen told Reality TV World of Michaels' discussion with her during their 24 hours together. "[She told me] that I was just always pushing down my abilities and just never really acknowledging the fact of who I was, who I could be, and that I really was this great person and my potential was endless."
"She was just trying to help me get through all of that and help me to accept the fact that there are things that I can do and not to always say 'No I can't do it," [and instead say] 'You can do it. Try it and see,'" she added to Reality TV World.
Cremen -- who is now wearing a size 8 and weighs "150-something" -- seems to have taken Michaels' words to heart and built up the confidence to look for a full-time job for the first time in her life.
"I just feel so confident, just better in every aspect of my life. I've done a lot of things, but never a paying job. As far as volunteering I've run auctions and different things like that, and I probably would want to do something in that area," she told reporters. "Either party planning or anything like that. I have a lot of potential but, I guess, I never had the confidence. [Now] I'm feeling much more confidence that I would be able to do it."