The Courier-Mail

Couple get Commando training in their battle of bulge


All she’s ever wanted is to be a mum but Tenealle Auvale was told by a doctor that she’s a “walking contracept­ive” due to her obesity.

The 26-year-old appears in the new season of The Biggest Loser Families alongside her husband Johnee, 38 (right).

They’ve been trying desperatel­y to fall pregnant for several years but the show’s doctor, Norman Swan, delivered a heartbreak­ing assessment of their chances.

“Doctor Swan told me I was a walking contracept­ive,” Tenealle says. “When you’re overweight, it reduces your chances of falling pregnant as well as carrying a baby full term. So the odds of us being able to have a child was slim.”

Before the show, the office admin worker from Victoria suspected her weight was adding to the couple’s complicati­ons. They’ve endured several unsuccessf­ul IVF attempts over the years.

Doctor Swan’s crushing verdict drove home just how bad her health had gotten.

“I’ve allowed myself to get to this point,” she says. “That’s tough to acknowledg­e.”

At the start of the show, which premieres on Network Ten this Sunday, Tenealle weighs in at 134kg while Johnee pushes the scales to 215kg.

He’s this season’s heaviest contestant. And the doctor’s news for him was shocking.

“The doctor told me I’m a ticking time bomb,” Johnee recalls.

“Essentiall­y, he said that if I didn’t do anything about my health, I’d end up in a coffin by the time I’m 50. It was confrontin­g, like a slap in the face.

“I don’t want to die. I’m still a young man.”

The couple, who met at church nine years ago, are competing as a team with Johnee’s brother Moses and his wife Rina.

Fitness trainer Steve “Commando” Willis will whip them into shape over several weeks. His first task is helping Johnee kick his soft drink habit.

“I’d easily do four to six litres a day of fizzy drink,” Johnee admits. “I’m a Mountain Dew fan. I do the Dew.”

His other shocking food habits include eating fried chicken and chips for breakfast, hosting lavish family banquets of whole suckling pigs, and avoiding any kind of vegetable.

Johnee says he was pretty content with life the way it was.

“I looked forward to getting out of bed in the morning.

“The problem was that my body was malfunctio­ning. I was always running out of breath. I couldn’t keep up with my friends.” TBL FAMILIES, CHANNEL 10, SUNDAY, 7.30PM

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