Monday, 15 October 2012

Rulon Gardner Loses 173 Pounds---Rulon Gardner born August 16, 1971 is an American Olympian who competed in the 2000 Olympic games, winning the gold medal in Greco-Roman wrestling upon defeating Russian Aleksandr Karelin, who was previously undefeated in 13 years of international competition. Gardner was also a contestant on the 11th season of the Biggest Loser.

Rulon E. Gardner was born on August 16, 1971 in Afton, Wyoming. He is the son of Reed and Virginia Gardner and the last of nine children. His second great grandfather was Archibald Gardner, who was one of the early settlers of Star Valley, Wyoming. He attributes his strength to the physical labor that he performed growing up and working on the family's dairy farm.

In 2005, Gardner published his autobiography (co-written by Bob Schaller), Never Stop Pushing: My Life from a Wyoming Farm to the Olympic Medals Stand, in which he describes his Greco-Roman wrestling career, his academic struggles (as someone who suffers from a learning disability) and an account of his near-death experience when getting stranded after a snowmobile accident.

He is currently making his profession as a motivational speaker, often appearing as a keynote presenter and event host. He has appeared at corporate events, celebrity golf tournaments, trade shows, and conventions. He also has licensing deals, as well as print and television endorsements.

After the Athens Olympics, Gardner gained 210 pounds, culminating in a total body weight of 474 pounds. In January 2011, he was announced as a contestant on season 11 of the American reality television show, The Biggest Loser. After 16 weeks on the show, Gardner had lost 173 pounds.

Gardner shocked the trainers, staff, and contestants on the April 26th episode by announcing he would be leaving the show "for personal reasons", and left the show without a final weigh-in. He did not appear on the final episode of the season, except in the background of scenes of other contestants.

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