Biggest Loser‘s Julio: I Kicked My Fast-Food Habit
After a wrenching choice between Liz and Danny on the Brown Team and Julio Gomez of the Black Team, the remaining contestants on season 8 of The Biggest Loser sent Julio packing on Tuesday in another heart-breaking elimination. The 40-year-old mortgage loan officer from Algonquin, Ill., started at 407 lbs. and is now down to 279! Julio spoke with reporters about his emotional episode, working out with Jillian, cooking at home and kicking his fast-food habit after leaving the show. –Melody Chiu
Since fellow contestants on the show agreed to never vote you off, did you feel betrayed?Not in the least bit. They voted from their hearts. They were very sincere and if you watch last night’s episode closely, they agonized over those votes. You had a firefighter and a coroner, who was a strong competitive guy, that just completely fell apart during the vote — and that was truly the relationship I had with those .
I even said on the show, when somebody comes from a place of sincerity like that, there’s no way I can be angry with them, and I knew going into that vote that that was going to be one of the harder decisions that they were going to make for that season. I couldn’t, number one, step in front of Liz or Danny and say you should vote for me versus them, and obviously they couldn’t do the same, so they had to make a decision on their own. To this day, I have no regrets, I have no remorse, I have no animosity towards anybody who voted to send me home.
How long did Jillian work to draw out the emotional reasons why you gained so much weight? Was that cathartic?That workout — that total time spent with Jillian — was probably almost an hour. I was one of those folks that walked into the gym thinking that I didn’t have an issue, that I was just somebody who was a happy guy who just liked to eat, quite frankly, a little bit too much, and I got to the way I did. Jillian wasn’t having that reason from me, and she just kept digging and digging and it really hit home for me. That was a great, great moment for me to realize that you don’t get to 400 pounds without having some feeling inside to get you there. She really got me past that hump and I have to thank her heartfully for even getting to that point for me. It’s helped me tremendously.
Do you have a favorite recipe you like to cook?I have never been the guy to say, “Okay, here’s a strict recipe. Here’s exactly how we’re going to do it.” I’ll more work off ingredients. Even your better chefs in this world will not design their menus until they see what’s freshest at the market and what they can have in their restaurant. I look in my fridge and say, “Okay, what can I have today? I have these vegetables, I got this chicken, I got this fish, maybe we’re going to put together.” My daughters always ask me the same question: “What are we having for dinner?” And I’ll just simply say we’re having fish and vegetables, and I’ll leave it there. And then I’ll just make something up and go, “Hey, this is pretty good!”
What was the worst habit you had from before The Biggest Loser that you can now say you no longer have?I would say the worst habit that I had was the fast food drive-thru. I would stop through a fast food drive-thru a lot more frequently that I wish I would’ve, and that is completely eliminated from my life.