In the nail-biting finale of The Biggest Loser Asia Season 2, 24-year-old Viveganandam Deverai (Raj) from Singapore was announced as Asia’s Biggest Loser with an incredible 67 kg loss – going from a hefty 144 kg to an astounding 77 kg after months of hardcore training.
Raj, who took home USD100,000 for winning the title, has not been the crowd favorite at all, often coming under fire from the show’s fans for his manipulative game play on the reality TV show where contestants compete to lose weight. There is a villain in every reality show and Raj is the one everybody loves to hate on the second season of The Biggest Loser Asia (TBLA2).
Dubbed “the snake” by fellow contestants, the 3D modeller from Singapore with a penchant for computer games has been applying his tactical gaming skills on the show.
Raj said that he channelled all the negative energy from hate mail into losing more weight for the finale. Ultimately, Raj the Master Game Player may not have been a crowd favourite but he credits his haters for his win, saying their harsh words gave him the motivation to keep on pushing.
There was negativity even from his own father, Edward Viveganandam who, in a video segment of the finale aired last night on Diva Universal (StarHub Channel 522), confessed that before the competition, he did not talk much to Raj or want to go out with him because he felt embarrassed by his weight.
Raj says of his father’s frankness: ‘It did hurt a bit but I channelled all that into my training and I was motivated to lose even more.’
Prior to the finale, Raj said, “I’ve regained my life … and it is impossible to put a price tag on it. But of course winning would be awesome. I’m doing my best to win!”
The 3 finalists—Raj from Singapore, Nai from Thailand and Genghis from the Philippines—endured tough training and challenges over three months.
Putting up a close fight as the first runner-up, Nai from Thailand lost an equally amazing 63 kg and narrowly missed being crowned the champion by a mere 1 kg.
Sometimes annoying but mostly endearing Genghis, who has been peppering the show with his wry humour even in tense situations and occasionally princess-y attitude when it comes to sweating it out at the gym. When crowned the second runner-up with his 57 kg loss, he quipped “That’s one supermodel!” as he stepped off the scales.
The 34-year-old internet café owner weighed 162 kilograms at the beginning of the competition and was considered a “walking time bomb” by his doctors.
Genghis Khan said, “I got a new lease on life with ‘The Biggest Loser Asia.’ For the past 30 years, I was living from day by day, just waiting to collapse from all my illnesses. At first, I joined the competition for myself, but now, I am beginning to realize I have become a beacon for everyone to see that the impossible can be possible.”
What does the new Biggest Loser Asia have to say about his win and the USD100,000 prize money?
“Finally all that effort in the gym and dieting has paid off. It’s not about the money or title, it’s about getting my life back.”
To all the contestants who have lost a lot of weight, congratulations. You are all winners in your personal battle against obesity. A better and healthier life beckons!