Exclusive Interview: Alison Sweeney, Host of 'The Biggest Loser'
Exclusive Interview: Alison Sweeney, Host of 'The Biggest Loser'
When The Biggest Loser returned for a fourth season this fall, it brought a lot of changes with it.  Instead of two competing teams, the show gave us three and brought back trainer Jillian Michaels.  The Biggest Loser also changed hosts from Caroline Rhea to Alison Sweeney.  Sweeney is better known to soap opera fans as Sami Brady on Days of our Lives.  She began her role on the show back in 1993, when she was just 16 years later.  Now, 14 years later, she has become synonymous with daytime television.  Sweeney has always been forthright about her own weight loss issues and when the hosting opportunity came for The Biggest Loser, she jumped at the chance.  Tonight, a very special episode of the show airs where the contestants still in the game will receive makeovers and the opportunity to see their families.  Alison talked to BuddyTV today about The Biggest Loser and how she finds time for herself and her family while filming two shows at once!

Below, you will find the complete transcript and mp3 of the interview.

Hey everybody, this is Gina from BuddyTV, and today, I'm talking to Alison Sweeney from Days of our Lives and the host of The Biggest Loser. Well, you've been on Days of our Lives for so long. I'm wondering what is it about the show that keeps you on it for so many years, since you were a teenager?

You know what? It's just a fun show, and I love the character, I love the people I work with. I love everything about it. So it's been tremendously rewarding for me for so many years. They're my family.

And did you ever have a desire to do something like host a reality show? Or is this something that came up out of the blue?

You know, I am a fan of reality shows. I love The Biggest Loser. You know, I was watching it before I joined it. And when they approached me and asked me if I wanted to be a part of it, I leapt at the chance. I was thrilled. It wasn't something that occurred to me, but I really was excited to do it.

Did you feel any pressure, coming onto the show, since it had already been on for three seasons and had a previous host?

Yeah, definitely. It's sort of scary to take over for someone and tough to fill in on the show that's already had its start and already has a great fanbase, and I was certainly one of those fans. But I was excited at the opportunity and thrilled at the chance to be part of a show that I think really does help people and really does make a difference, not just any old show. It's very inspiring, and so I accepted without question.

Now, you've publicly spoken about your battle with weight loss in terms of being a daytime actress. Is that something that made you want to be part of The Biggest Loser as opposed to a different reality show?

Oh, absolutely. I think that being part of a—being the battle that I have had with my weight, which I think is certainly common with a lot of people in this country, women in particular, I definitely relate to that. And, I know what they're going through, and I have always been sort of forthright about it because I think that there is that confidence you can get in knowing that someone else has been down that road and knows what you're going through, and just talking about it, I think, sort of opens people up to knowing that they can talk about it too. And there are solutions and there are other people out there going through, and being part of the show is just an extension of that.

Now, when you were filming the show, did you find yourself getting personally involved with your feelings towards the contestants? Or were you able to separate that, as the host?

No, no, I was totally involved with all of them. I care about all of them, and I am so proud of them, and excited for them, and thrilled at how successful they all are in losing weight and changing their lives, and thrilled to have been a part of that.

I've always said that The Biggest Loser has one of the best payoffs at the end. Are you amazed at the weight-loss? I mean, it's really crazy to see what they look like from when they come in and then when they get home.

It is so true. It is the best ending of a show. You know, I mean, it's just so rewarding to see that change and to see how far they've come. Actually, tonight is all about it, it's a makeover show. Tonight's episode is all about just that transformation of all of the contestants who are still on campus, and seeing how far they've come in three months. And it's really shocking and exciting and mind-blowing.

You mentioned shocking moments. When something big happens, like when Neil gains all that weight, is that as surprising to you as it is to the other contestants?

Oh, absolutely. I mean, it was a shocking thing, and then, when he confessed to having thrown the game, I mean, that was all a lot of drama and surprise, and people not even expecting that that was even—I mean, not that we didn't know it was possible, but that they would do that and that you could do it to that extent. I mean, it was really unexpected.

Now, on tonight's episode, will family member's of the contestants get to see their makeovers?

Yes. There is a big family element where they get to surprise their loved ones, and it's a lot of big surprises for the contestants.

Now, whenever I check in on you online, you're always doing something. How do you find the time to do Days of our Lives, The Biggest Loser, and raise a family? How do you make time for yourself too?

I consider that a big part of my downtime. My relaxing at the end of each night is I read, and I have a book club with some girls that I'm friends with and we all read books together, even if it's just two pages. My husband teases me because even if I'm so tired that I can only read one or two pages, I still have to give myself five minutes to just read before I go to sleep at night because I feel like that's time for me to just do my thing. I feel like that's what it's all about, you know, having that reward at the end of the night.

Now, is The Biggest Loser a show that you're hoping to continue with in the future as host?

Oh, absolutely. We've already started on season 5, and that's going to premiere in January, and I'm going to be around with that hopefully for a long time. I think it's a great show, and I hope it stays on the air for a long time.

Alison, I just wanted to thank you so much for your time. We can't wait to see how the rest of the season plays out.

Oh, thank you, thank. Enjoy.

- Gina Scarpa, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of NBC)