The odd man out this week on The Biggest Loser was Red Team stalwart David Griffin, 31, from Cedar Hill, Tenn. In a tearful elimination, Griffin was sent packing in time for his son Jake’s birthday party. His four kids and his wife Sheri marveled at his weight loss in an emotional homecoming. And so did we: The 6-foot tall Griffin started the program at 368 lbs.–now he’s down 118 lbs. to 250! PEOPLE spoke to Griffin about befriending the conniving Neil, working out with Kim and changing old habits.
Neil is Mr. Controversy this season. What is your take on him?We were almost as close as brothers. To come from different walks of life and to come from different parts of the world, we knew nothing about each other but we were both fathers and we were both husbands and we really connected. He’s somebody I really miss. What was Kim’s influence on your losing weight?She was really worried if I went home maybe I would get depressed and be overwhelmed with my family and wouldn’t make the time to work out, so I made it a point the first full day I was home to go to the gym–and I’ve been every day since. What she stressed to me was, ‘I am setting you up for real results so when you go home and lose 5 or 6 lbs. a week, you know that that’s OK.’ It has carried through. As of today… I am close to a 5-lb-loss-a-week average.
So that fight we saw between you and Kim was a bit of editing magic?Kim and I had probably one of the best working relationships in the whole game and that one time… they captured my one meltdown of the whole season on film and it made it a lot nastier than it really was!
Have you embraced any new foods?Absolutely. Tuna! That was one of my excuses for so long: ‘I just don’t have time to eat healthy.’ But if somebody doesn’t have the time to take out a couple pieces of wheat bread and mix up a can of tuna with some light Miracle Whip, and grab a handful of grapes–you can do that faster than going through a drive-thru window at McDonald’s.
It sounds like you are doing more than just losing weight.I went in to get my teeth whitened. If you are going to put yourself out there in front of the public at the finale, I want this to be a complete body transformation for me. I’ve also quit smoking and I eat healthy. There will be no excuses in my life for not eating right or not going to the gym. Are you going to have some days when you are not feeling so good? Absolutely. But you’ve got to still make an effort. –Cynthia Wang
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Photo: Mitchell Haaseth/NBC; Dan Keats