HOMETOWN: Plainfield, Illinois
OCCUPATION: COO of a Restaurant Franchise
Tanya Winfield tried out for the show hoping to drastically change her lifestyle and reverse the effects of poor eating habits and a sedentary life. She also hopes to reduce the risk of childhood obesity and diabetes in her two-year-old daughter, who was born weighing 11 pounds, 6 ounces. The oldest of nine children, Tanya was born and raised primarily in Chicago and attended DePaul University. She has been overweight most of her life, but overcame the challenges of having a drug-addicted teen mother to become very successful professionally, now working as the COO of a popular restaurant franchise. When a family friend died at age 36 from weight-related issues, she knew she could meet the same fate if she didn't change her life. The focus on childhood obesity in season 14 of "The Biggest Loser" also had a big impact. "The statistics really hit home for me by reminding me of my toddler's birth weight and the high risk involved," she says. "I refuse to allow her to be a statistic and understand that it starts with me." Tanya had gestational diabetes when pregnant with both of her daughters, now ages two and 20, and she also has a 23-year-old son. Currently 41 years old and 262 pounds, Tanya is excited about the journey to get healthy. "The rest of my life will be the best of my life," she says. She looks forward to keeping up with her active toddler and being confident enough to date and hopefully remarry someday.
Tanya Winfield Photos
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