Bob Harper was visibly shocked when Biggest Loser contestant Rachel Frederickson revealed her 155-pound weight loss on the show's Tuesday, Feb. 4, finale. Now, in an interview for The Rachael Ray Show, he's opening up about his reaction and the controversy around Frederickson's thin frame.
In an appearance taped Feb. 6 for the episode airing Feb. 13, Harper was asked by host Rachael Ray what he thought of fan remarks that the season 15 winner is now too skinny.
"What people don't understand is, when the contestants leave to go home...they're in charge of themselves," he began. "I had not seen her until that night, and so when she walked out, I was just kind of like, 'Whoa.' And I've been on the show since the beginning, forever."
"I was stunned," the longtime fitness trainer admitted. "That would be the word. I mean, we've never had a contestant at 105 pounds."
Harper and fellow trainer Jillian Michaels were initially reluctant to comment on Frederickson's weight loss. On Wednesday, Feb. 5, both posted messages to their Facebook pages to "congratulate all of the BL contestants on their hard work."
The statements went on to to say, "We're not comfortable commenting on Rachel's journey because we weren't her trainers and weren't given an opportunity to work with her at any point. Any questions about contestants on The Biggest Loser should be directed to the show's producers."
Frederickson's own trainer on the show, Dolvett Quince, also addressed the controversy on Facebook. "Biggest Loser is a journey which has its ups and downs," he wrote. "Please try not to look at one slice of Rachel's journey and come to broad conclusions. Rachel's health is and always has been my main concern and her journey to good health has not yet ended!!"