Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bob and Brita: My Magical Bob Harper Experience


If you had asked me yesterday morning if I was going to meet Bob Harper, Biggest Loser trainer extraordinaire, I would have said, "Sure. Maybe I'll walk past him on my way to the subway. This is New York, after all." What I would never have imagined is not only did I get to meet him, but he touched my feet.


Intrigued?


On the twitter yesterday, fellow fitness blogger Jacqueline aka Fitarella (check out her site here and her twitter here) asked if I was going to the Bob yoga class in the morning. Hmmm? What? Yes, please! With a couple a quick e-mails, I was confirmed for a car service (!) to pick me up at 6:15 AM for an early morning Bob yoga class sponsored by Brita. We all know Brita from the Biggest Loser ranch, and Bob is a big fan of not using disposable plastic water bottles.


When I arrived, I got to meet Jaqueline in person with her coach Jodi from Model Per4mance (check it out!) and fellow fitness blogger Gym Belle from Gympressions (you can meet her here!). It was almost like getting to go to Fitbloggin'. They are the cutest sweetest ladies! And so full of information. THANK YOU for the opportunity!
When Bob arrived at the New York Health and Racquetball Club on Park Avenue South, we all filed into the yoga class to see some awesome swag from the Brita folks! Of course a Brita pitcher and those green bottles like the ones shown on the Biggest Loser, but also a nifty canvas tote bag and yoga mat. HOLLER! Nothing is better than free cool stuff.



Bob hopped right into the yoga, and although it was only about 40 minutes, I did break a sweat! What a way to wake up! In table top pose we did a balance exercise where Bob pulled on my feet and then my hands. All I could think about was how I haven't had a pedicure in months. I hope he doesn't have a thing about feet. If so, I apologize profusely. We also went into a plie squat move where he pushed down on my legs until I was shaking like Jell-O. My own personal abuse from Bob!


After the workout, the bloggers and news people got to ask Bob questions about everything from exercising to his thoughts on Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution (he liked it!). I asked him how he got started on The Biggest Loser, and he told a great story about how he had come to LA from Tennessee in a little Toyota, started training out here for "celebrities" (his quotes, not mine) and was asked by NBC to audition for the show. he was skeptical at first, especially about the title, but after much research and a 6-week audition period, he landed the gig. And here he is nine seasons later.


I also want to point out that Bob is an EXCELLENT plugger. We always tease about this during our live tweetfest during #BL9, but Bob does it so seamlessly you don't even know it is happening! Here we are, talking about the importance of working out and hydration, and BAM! Brita plug. Hilarious. If he had pulled out Extra gum or some Ziplock baggies I might have wet myself.


After a quick photo op, I had breakfast with my new lady blogger friends. They are all so cool, I am totally jazzed to be in their company.




All in all, it was a magical day for this lady. I love my life!



Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Afternoon Delight

Care of the HuffingtonPost.com

Nope, nothing wrong with this ad. Nothing at all.

BL9- week 10- Home is Where the Bike Is

Sherry's chair is still cooling when Ali announces that all the Losers are going to be heading home for a full week. This is the week where the contestants get to be smack in the middle of the environment that got them where they were when they first arrived at the ranch.

I often wonder if the contestants returning home is like a heroin addict returning home to where they used to buy drugs. I am a big fan of the show "Intervention" and often see that the addicts move away from the city where all the trouble started because there are too many triggers. Is there a connection to food addiction like this? Anyhoo. . .


The music begins and there is a major packing montage (after a quick plug from Sunshine for her Tempur-pedic bed) and everyone jets off to see their friends and family. On their arrival, they are given huge wooden crates: Ashley asks, "Do I open it?". After they figure it out, all the contestants discover a stationary bike and a box full of cupcakes. They pop in the accompanying DVD and Ali tells the contestants that they will be competing in a 26.2 mile marathon on their bike at the same time as the other Losers for a cash prize of $10,000. Here's the rub: if they decide to partake of the 100 calorie cupcakes, each cupcake will add 5 additional minutes to any team member they choose.


Melissa's mouth begins to salivate. GAME PLAY in her own home? She immediately is on Lance like white on rice. Lance eats a whopping 17 cupcakes, 1,700 calories of game play. Most of the 'cakes go towards Sam, with some for Sunshine, Daris, and Stephanie. Mike eats 6 cupcakes for Sam and Stephanie, and Andrea eats 9 cupcakes. She just focuses on the blue team, right? NO. She eats some for Sam. HELLO? He is on your team! What a moron. Everyone else abstains because they want to fight fair.


Over the week, we see the Losers struggle at the gym without the help of Bob and Jillian and struggle to make the right choices when out to eat. Why does every restaurant they go to offer potato skins and ranch dressing? The most impressive moment is when Daris goes to his favorite watering hole and sings karaoke on national television completely sober. The Celebrity Fit Clubbers could learn something from him.


Then it is the day of the race, y'all. Nothing says excitement like watching a stationary bike marathon. I was on the edge of my seat watching the scenery not whiz past as they sweated and peddled their way to glory. So who won? After the cupcakes were tallied, the results:


9th: Stephanie (7 cakes)

8th: Sam (10 cakes)

7th: Andrea (5 cakes)

6th: Sunshine (6 cakes)

5th: Daris (4 cakes)

4th: Mike (0)

3rd: Ashley (0)

2nd: Lance (0) No one ate any cupcakes against Lance? That is nuts.

1st: KOLI (0)


Koli wins the cash prize and Lance and Melissa have to suck it.


Back at the ranch, Bob and Jillian learn about the week, the cupcakes, and the state of Mike's grandma (not well). "Life gets in the way," Bob says. The contestants have gotten a taste of what it will be like once they are home. Now it is time to remind them why they are here and punish them in a grueling Last Chance Workout. Ashley throws up two more times. Gross.


Bob can tell that something is not right with Lance (really?) and takes him aside to talk to him. Apparently, Lance feels guilty because Melissa is home alone with the kids and he is here. I'm sure she poisoned him and made him feel uber guilty about not winning. Bob tries to get Lance back in the game, but is it too late?


WEIGH IN:

O'Neal: From 302 lbs to 295 lbs- 7 lbs lost

Sunshine: From 216 lbs to 208 lbs- 8 lbs lost

Lance: From 282 lbs to 274 lbs- 8 lbs lost

Mike: From 397 lbs to 389 lbs- 8 lbs lost

Koli: From 297 lbs to 287 lbs- 10 lbs lost

Daris: From 248 lbs to 244 lbs- 4 lbs lost

Total Loss: 45 lbs- 2.58%


The black team needs to lose more than 26 pounds to stay away from elimination.

Andrea: From 238 lbs to 232 lbs- 6 lbs lost

Stephanie: From 208 lbs to 199 lbs- 9 lbs lost

Ashley: From 286 lbs to 276 lbs- 10 lbs lost

Sam: From 278 lbs to 264 lbs- 14 lbs lost

Total loss: 39 lbs- 3.86%


The black team wins! So, here I am thinking that Daris is probably going to be sent home with his tiny weight loss. In the deliberation room, everyone just talks to Mike because he is sad about his grandma. No mention of Daris. In the elimination room, everyone except for Lance votes for Lance. BOOM. Total surprise. I guess they didn't like Lance and Melissa either.


At home Lance has managed to lose 100 pounds, even with Melissa being his wife. I find it odd that Melissa is making Lance feel guilty about being on the ranch when the previews for the next episode show Melissa back again. It's okay for her but not for Lance? And didn't she say she couldn't lose weight at the ranch? WHAT IS YOUR DEAL, MELISSA MORGAN?!?


All will soon be revealed.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Kirstie Alley's Big Life- episodes 3 and 4- "Oh, Rats! It's My Birthday!" and "Swimming in the Rain"

After watching the third and fourth episodes of Big Life, I am a little confused. Is the show about weight loss? Is it about Kirstie's relationship with her family and staff? Is it about Organic Liaison, the weight loss supplements that Kirstie is promoting? They haven't shown up on the show YET, but I have a feeling they will pop up soon. Check out the website, it's kinda cute.


Let's just say that the show is a bit about everything.


In episode three, Kirstie's assistant Kelly and her children True and Lillie are planning a surprise birthday party for Kirstie. The big surprise is if they can get the Travolta family to attend. I keep forgetting that Kirstie did "Look Who's Talking?" with John Travolta a billion years ago- I love that movie! Bruce Willis as the voice of the baby Mikey? Priceless. I digress. Kirstie has been taking private salsa lessons at home, and her kids want her birthday to be salsa themed. Kelly leaves the kids in charge of the guest list (what?) and the birthday cake.



Meanwhile, chubby buddy Jim is losing a battle against some cute and cuddly RATS that keep terrorizing the Alley estate. Kirstie refuses to let Jim exterminate them. They keep releasing the rats into the "wilderness", only to have the same rodents returning again and again. When Jim goes to release a rat in the park, he is so out of shape that he leans against a sign post in front of Kirstie's house and just let the rat run free into a neighbor's yard. Problem solved.



Jim is then rewarded for his hard work by going with True and Lillie to pick out and sample birthday cakes for Kirstie. And by sample, I mean that the kids tasted while he looked on longingly. That's an improvement over the Jim I saw last week with a big ol' burger in his mouth.



Birthday morning, Kirstie is greeted by her loving family and some balloons, and True promises her a quiet day and dinner at the Sizzler. Trainer J.R. gives Kirstie "chocolate and flowers": His muscled frame in a pair of skimpy speedos and a big bouquet of flowers. After a pool workout (Kirstie wears a long sleeve shirt and pants in the pool), she and Jim clean up and have a nice lunch with family and friends.



Later that night, True and Lillie load Kirstie into a white Hummer stretch limo (to her embarrassment) and end up at El Cid Salsa Club. Kirstie is surprised by all her close friends, and the Travolta's make an appearance. John shows us his smooth dance moves (he really is good!) and he and wife Kelly give Kirstie a really pricey looking necklace. She blows out the candles on her cake, wishes for something- maybe world peace- and the party ends.



After turning down cake at her party, I was surprised to see her sneaking a piece from her fridge. I was happy to see it was only for the rat. Lucky rat.



Episode four was more weight oriented. Kirstie is frustrated that Jim always loses more weight than she does, so she vows to lose weight at a ritzy spa resort with her ladies and apprentice Kyle. She leaves Jim to fend for himself, but he has the advantage of having J.R. there to work him out.



It's officially on.



At the spa, Kirstie takes dance class, cooking class, gets massages and manicures, and tops it off with an early morning hike that she threatens to quit. At home, Jim works out with J.R., pulls branches out of the pool, and hangs out with True and housekeeper Magdalena.



When Kirstie arrives home, it is time for the weigh in. So who won? Kirstie lost 6 pounds. Jim? He lost 9 pounds. But her nails DO look nice.



One moment that I wanted to write about was between Kirstie and her daughter Lillie. Kirstie is worried that her crazy relationship with her body has poisoned her daughter's view of her own body. She apologizes to her for being a bad example. This moment struck a chord with me because I have always hated my body. I am getting to a healthy point in my life where I am learning to love myself, but it took me YEARS to overcome my negative mindset. I was raised in a family where personal appearance was king, and "gentle" ribbing about what you looked like was okay. I thought I was fat my WHOLE life. When I look at photos of me as a kid, I wonder why my folks were so concerned- I was little and cute, not chubby at all. Their over concern led me to think I was heavy, and it became a self fulfilling prophecy by the time I got to college.



It made me realize that I want my sons and daughters to love the way their bodies are- to be strong and fit and healthy- and not worry about tummies and eating a second helping if they are truly hungry and not making them feel badly about it. It was wise of Kirstie to take a look around and see if there was any collateral damage from her struggles with weight. I hope other parents do the same sort of damage control.



Her Big Life seems to be getting smaller. . .one stone at a time.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Celebrity Fit Club Boot Camp- week 6 and week 7- You Got Served!

I was watching Fit Club and taking notes like I do for the preparation on writing my blog, and I felt stuck creatively. I realized that every week on the show it is the same format. The contestants arrive, Harvey yells, they do an impossible feat, there is a dead weight challenge, they blow off some steam with some R & R, Rhonda talks to K Fed and Shar about their issues, and then everyone weighs in. Pepper in some Jay McCarroll quotes, and you got a show.

I am BORED. And I still don't believe the weights they are showing are really real. Reality programming NOT real? Say it ain't so!

I thought I would write a little highlight reel about each episode instead of going in for the full monty.

WEEK 6


The Drama: Bobby Brown arrives at Fit Camp only to tell his team mates and Harvey that he has a show in London the next day. Will he stay or will he go? He stays. What happened to all the folks in London that bought tickets?

The Challenge: The Fit Club Games= Four events that measure endurance, agility, speed, and strength.

  • * Tanisha and Jay are clipped to parachutes and have to run against hurricane gale force winds. Tanisha gets lifted off the ground and flies for a second. Then she passes out. WINNER: JAY

* Kevin and Jay have to haul 225-pound sand bags on a sled uphill. WINNER: JAY

* Kaycee and Shar have to capture the flag while Harvey shoots them with tennis balls. WINNER: SHAR

* Sebastian and Bobby have to run uphill and jump over hurdles for one mile. WINNER: SEBASTIAN

Bobby Brown was so slow on the race that the Blue Team ended up winning even though the Red Team won every other event. FAIL. Bobby does the dead weight challenge, which is picking up all the hay bale hurdles and dragging them back down the hill that he just ran up.

R & R: Cross reality show time! So You Think You Can Dance winner Josh shows up at camp to get the contestants involved in a dance off. Maybe Kevin has some flash backs to his movie "You Got Served". Everyone shows their moves, and High School Musical hip hopper Kaycee is crowned the winner.

DRAMA: Nicole and Bobby tell team captain Jay that maybe he needs to worry about himself instead of them. Jay loses weight every week. Bobby and Nicole don't. Judgement call: Jay is the winner.

WEIGH IN:

Kevin: Last week: 215 lbs Today: 212 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 3 lbs Next Week's Goal: 4 lbs

Tanisha: Last week: 229 lbs Today: 228 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 1 lb Next Week's Goal: 5 lbs

Shar: Last week: 137 lbs Today: 134 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 3 lbs Next Week's Goal: 3 lbs

Sebastian: Last week: 211 lbs Today: 210 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 1 lb Next Week's Goal:4 lbs

Bobby: Last week: 191 lbs Today: 191 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 0 Next Week's Goal: 4 lbs

Kaycee: Last week: 184 lbs Today: 180 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 4 lbs Next Week's Goal: 4 lbs

Nicole: Last week: 124 lbs Today: 127 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Gained: 3 lbs Next Week's Goal: 3 lbs

Jay: Last week: 238 lbs Today: 231 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 7 lbs Next Week's Goal: 3 lbs

REALLY? 0 pounds lost and 3 pounds gained? What is going on with these people? I wish they got voted off every week because I AM TIRED of the excuses.

Week 7

The drama: Bobby Brown did a concert in London and in AMSTERDAM. Really? Red Team has kissed and made up after Bobby called Jay a "punk ass snitch".

The challenge: The Fit Club marathon. Marathon= 3.2 mile track that you run on for an hour. So, not a marathon. But for "celebrities", yes, it is.

Even though Sebastian ran the course a few times over, the Red Team still won because Kevin and Tanisha are babies and couldn't do it. Tanisha actually stood at the base of the hill on the course and cried because she didn't want to climb up it. Because of this, she was voted the dead weight and had to scoop horse poop.

R & R: Game night on the Wii fit. Sebastian notes that Kaycee looks like one of the Mii's on the game.

Life Coach Rhonda Time: Rhonda has Googled all of the "stars" bad press and makes them read it out loud. We focus mostly on Kevin and Shar because their drama is real and on going. Kevin looks like an ass. The exercise was meant for the "celebs" to get over themselves. I don't know if it was successful.

PT: The teams have to compete in a brick event like they are training for a triathlon. Tanisha actually beats Bobby. Bobby gets a hernia horse in his knee. It's science.

WEIGH IN

Jay: Last week: 231 lbs Today: 227 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 4 lbs Next Week's Goal: 4 lbs

Kevin: Last week: 215 lbs Today: 210 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 2 lb Next Week's Goal: 4 lbs

Nicole: Last week: 127 lbs Today: 122 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 5 lbs Next Week's Goal: 2 lbs

Kaycee: Last week: 180 lbs Today: 178 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 2 lbs Next Week's Goal:4 lbs

Shar: Last week: 134 lbs Today: 133 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 1 lb Next Week's Goal: 3 lbs

Sebastian: Last week: 210 lbs Today: 209 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 1 lb Next Week's Goal: 3 lbs

Bobby: Last week: 191 lbs Today: 189 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 2 lbs Next Week's Goal: 4 lbs

Tanisha: Last week: 228 lbs Today: 223 lbs Goal: 5 lbs Total Loss: 5 lbs Next Week's Goal: 5 lbs

Everyone ACTUALLY lost weight this week. I think there is only one more episode left- maybe two? The only person that has reached their initial goal is the fab Jay. Everyone else has a pound or two. And Bobby has to pay $1,000 to charity for every pound he doesn't lose. We should implement this policy for everyone! If there are real stakes involved, people will hustle and lay off the real steaks.

Koo.

What I am "F'd Up!" about today! Hibba NYC


I recently got to write a beauty review for www.spa-nyc.com for a threading salon called Hibba NYC. I wanted to share my lovely sculpted brows with you!

I have never tried threading, and I am happy to report that it is really nicer than the hot wax and pulling. But if wax is your thing, Hibba (the namesake and owner) is happy to comply. There are all sorts of hair removal options on the menu.

Hibba NYC is located on the corner of West Broadway and Prince street in an bright, breezy corner studio. Hibba is a relaxed hostess who welcomes you with a smile and genuine warmth. The prices are really reasonable too! And what foxy lady doesn't want to save a little green?

Check it out, chicas!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Recovering Nicely- Week 2 Without the Insanity


Hello blogophiles! Happy to report that on my two week mark without my beloved Insanity I am doing leaps and bounds better!


It was very hard mentally to be without the intensity of Insanity. I really thought I was going to reverse all the progress that I had made over the past two months in just these couple weeks in traction. Easy yoga just doesn't have the same calorie burn, you know? I have really watched my food and I have managed to maintain my weight without any gain (woo!). I am so thankful that I did listen to my body and took the time to really stretch and take care of myself. Because of the preventative measures I took that first week, this week I have been able to incorporate lighter aerobic activities into the rotation with no further injury aggravation.


I did level 1 of Jillian Michael's Shred, intenSati Great Body Great Life with Patricia Moreno (awesome new DVD I picked up during the intenSati Warrior Challenge), and today I did 10 Minute Solution Kick Box Boot Camp with Keli Roberts. Every morning I wake up and check my hip and how it is feeling, and the only move that seems to give me any problems is laying supine and tilting my pelvis with my legs to do a lower body crunch. That gives some discomfort, so of course, I don't push my luck.


So here's the plan, Stan. After the weekend I plan on doing Insanity Core Cardio and Balance for one week (like the Insanity recovery week) and then completing the very last week of Insanity like I originally planned before I jacked myself up. Then I can take my final results picture and get the Insanity t-shirt for finishing!!!! And I can tell everyone to suck it while pointing at the shirt. :)


Here's to a healthy weekend and some healthy Insanity!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

In Your Face! Calorie Counts are Coming to a City Near You

I am a fan of the calorie counts being posted on menus here in New York City. I think it makes me more aware of the choices I am going to make, stops me from making certain choices, and encourages me to make a healthier or less bad decision.
For example, I went to Crumbs Bakery for my boyfriend's birthday and thought the calorie count listed next to each cupcake was the price of the cupcake. "Over $5 for a cupcake? OH. The cupcake is $3? That is over 500 calories. . ." Which led to the purchase of two cupcakes to split between four people as opposed to four cupcakes. Saved by the calorie count!


I am pleased that with the passing of the Health Care Reform Bill that there is a provision for the listing of nutrition information in restaurants that have more than 20,000 locations (read the article here). Like Chilis and McDonalds. That is calorie counts being posted on menu boards, drive throughs, even vending machines! No longer will you have to buy the product, shudder when you see the calorie count listed on the wrapper, and then shrug because you already purchased the product so you might as well eat it. Why waste money, right?


It is proven that the calorie listings are making people more aware of what they are eating. Just like books like "Fast Food Nation" and documentaries like "Food Inc." are opening the eyes of those who actually buy a movie ticket or purchase a book, calorie counts being in front of the public's face will not allow people to close their eyes and plug their fingers in their ears about what they are feeding themselves and their families any longer.


It's not happening tomorrow, but it's happening soon. In my opinion, it can't come soon enough.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

BL9- week 9- Grimm's Fatty Tales


Once upon a time, in the kingdom of California, there was a ranch nestled in a sun dappled valley where chubby men and women flocked for their opportunity to be less chubby. These people were known as the Losers, and they were adorned in colors of black and blue, dividing themselves into two teams that worked, ate, and played together for the chance to win money and lucrative book deals.
This chapter of the story brings us nine weeks into their weight loss journey. Sir Daris of Oklahoma has had to say goodbye to his mother, and after many tears and sitting in his room alone, the black teams and blue teams gather together with the Good Witch Ali to learn their fate.
"To change your body you must change your mind," Ali says, and tells the teams they must compete in a trivia challenge. "Answer three questions correctly, and you shall go to the spa! Answer incorrectly, however, and you will get thee to the kitchen and the gym for hours of cleaning." The black team puts up a vicious fight, but the blue team is victorious, and gets to ride in a black stretch limo to the 4 Seasons for much pampering and preening.
The black team spends their time scrubbing and mopping the kitchen and gym until they can see their tear stained faces reflected in all the surfaces. Sir Sam knows his wenches are disheartened, and gives them a speech on how strong they are as a team and how they musn't lose heart.
The Wicked Witch of the East, Jillian, and the Wicked Witch of the West, Bobilyn, meet with their crew to discuss their wins and losses, and to make them sweat and moan in the torture chamber (also known as a gym). Jillian notices one of her monkeys, Princess Ashley, is very sad because her mother, Queen Sherry, is the oldest person on their team and is all alone. Jillian takes Ashley to speak with her mother to tell her that she needs to be a big girl now and let her mother be free. Queen Sherry says, "You have the wings to fly and so do I."
On the other team, tragedy strikes. Sir Mike of Chicago gets some dreadful news: his grandmother has fallen ill. He packs a bag and goes over the river and through the woods to see her, avoiding any hungry wolves that might keep him from his quest, leaving is team unprotected and alone.
Later that morning, the two teams journey to far off Los Angeles to see Ali the Good Witch and the very handsome Prince Curtis Stone. The ladies swoon. Prince Curtis has a challenge for the teams: They must cook a delicious and nutritious three course meal fit for a king! The teams bustle about, choosing their twelve ingredients carefully. They serve good Prince Curtis and Ali the Good Witch their meals, and Prince Curtis decrees that the black teams meal is worthy of the five pound advantage at the weigh in later this week. There is much rejoicing.
When the teams return to the ranch, Wicked Witch Jillian says, "Hi Monkeys!" and learns of the black teams fate. A five pound advantage is very good indeed. Wicked Witch Bobilyn screams and stomps his feet, cursing the heavens and Prince Curtis Stone for this turn of events.
The only way to turn things around, Bobilyn decides, is the last chance workout. Bobilyn pushes his minions, making them lift many weights and travel through the tunnel of flesh to be victorious in the weigh in.
The black team, not to be outdone, has Jillian cry, "Back to beatings as usual!" Sir Sam turns into a beast, the wenches sweat and whimper, and all is left in the torture chamber.
Sir Mike returns from Chicago with news that his grandmother is very ill, but he pushed himself daily to keep himself healthy so his team would be victorious. Would they win the weigh in?
Ali the Good Witch meets them at the soothsaying weigh in devices of much sadness to find out their fates.
Andrea: From 243 lbs to 238 lbs- 5 lbs lost
Sam: From 286 lbs to 278 lbs- 8 lbs lost
Ashley: From 293 lbs to 286 lbs- 7 lbs lost
Sherry: From 166 lbs to 163 lbs- 3 lbs lost
Stephanie: From 210 lbs to 208 lbs- 2 lbs lost
Total weight lost: 30 lbs- 2.50%
The blue team must lose more than 45 pounds to win.
Lance: From 290 lbs to 282 lbs- 8 lbs lost
Daris: From 258 lbs to 248 lbs- 10 lbs lost
Koli: From 306 lbs to 297 lbs- 9 lbs lost
O'Neal: From 311 lbs to 302 lbs- 9 lbs lost
Sunshine: From 225 lbs to 216 lbs- 9 lbs lost
Mike: From 408 lbs to 397 lbs- 11 lbs lost
The blue team has won the challenge. "You are still six strong," says Ali the Good Witch. The Wicked Witch Bobilyn congratulates his team, while Wicked Witch Jillian holds her monkeys close, bidding one of them farewell.
In the dreaded elimination room, the black team decides that Queen Sherry must spread her wings and fly away, exiled back to the kingdom of Knoxville, Tennessee.
Two months pass. We see Queen Sherry, much lighter and much happier. "I can't wait to see what the next chapter of my life entails," she says.
The end.

Giveaways are fun!

I read a lot of my fellow health bloggers bloggy goodness, and many of them have delightful giveaways of food items, clothes, DVDs, etc. If you are reading this, go to my blog roll on the side of my page and check out this goods! Who doesn't like free stuff?

On this note, I want to win this particular giveaway: My friend Missy of Missy Maintains (http://www.missymantains.com/) is giving away a bathroom scale. I want it. And if you want it too, check out her contest!


And while you are there, sign up for her blog feed and her twitter. She is a great resource of all that is good and healthy here in the NYC.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Kirstie Alley's Big Life- episodes 1 and 2- "The Tipping Point" and "Good Help is Hard to Find"

I love Kirstie Alley. I loved her on Cheers, I loved her as Pier One spokeswoman, I loved Fat Actress, I loved her as Jenny Craig weight loss wonder and superstar. I think she is lovely whether she is little tiny or she is big and curvy- I mean, really people. When you are pretty you are pretty no matter what size you are. Needless to say, I was thrilled to see she was giving reality TV a try (score!) and star in a show that showcases her life as a fat lady. Not "circus fat" (her words, not mine) but just fatter then she was when she lost the 70 some odd pounds on Jenny Craig.

Clearly she won't be shilling for JC again. And as Valerie Bertinelli has shown you can keep the weight off. Fingers crossed, Jason Alexander! So what is the point of The Big Life?

As the title of the first episode shows, she has reached a tipping point in her life. Kirstie should have stock in US Weekly and The National Enquirer because when she is on the cover she sells magazines. And not because she has a hot new movie coming out or a new book: It's because she was thin then she was fat then she was thin again and then she was fat again. She is currently fat. And she wants to change, but she knows it will be hard and she needs help.

The first show introduces her support team: Lillie and True, her teenage kids who love their mom and want her to be happy and fit. And they are totally willing to call her out when she is being lazy. Kelly, her longtime assistant whom Kirstie states would totally get a date if she would just brush her hair. Kyle, her "apprentice" (I don't know what that means, but I think he is just another assistant) who came all the way from Kirstie's home state of Kansas to work for her. He taught her how to Twitter. Tracy, her stylist who finds all those long flowing twirly gowns that she likes to wear. And JIM. Jim is a handy man who is based in Florida- and I don't know why he is there "working" when he lives in Florida- and is Kirstie's "chubby buddy". If over 300 pounds makes you chubby.

Kirstie also has a menagerie of animals- cats, dogs, lemurs (think Madagascar). I think I saw a bird cage in there. It's a literal zoo.

With this "wacky" cast of characters set, where does the weight loss come into the equation? The episode shows Kirstie trying to pick out a New Year's Eve dress, but she stops when the paparazzi (also a major character) take a picture of her while she is sitting in her back yard that is incredibly unflattering. She decides not to go out, defeated. Her assistants are going out on the town, but have to be back to work at 5 AM January 1st to weigh Kirstie for her newest weight loss endeavor.

From what I can ascertain, Kirstie has some new weight loss product that she is going to be using during the show. She has also roped in Jim, her "Jimmy" pig for testing the products. Kirstie is going to need some serious motivation- this episode showed her working out for about seven minutes before she quit.

On New Year's Eve, she has a dinner "date" with Jim, where they swap stories on how they gained the weight. Kirstie is very candid about her old methods of losing weight- snorting coke and smoking cigarettes- and that she has very bad habits. When she stopped doing drugs she never stopped eating, hence the weight gain. Jim is shown eating monster fat food burgers (I meant to type fast but I like the mistake. It's fitting, no?) so we know why he is heavy. He says after he got married he sort of gave up because there was no more reasons to stay fit.

The next morning is "the moment of truth". At 5 AM she gets on the scale with Kelly and Kyle looking on. She weighs in at 230 lbs. "Is it over 180?" she asks. "Just a smidgen," Kelly lies. Kirstie decides she wants her weight in stones, and she is 16 stones wanting to lose 6.4 stones. Or 90 pounds for us non British people.

"The truth hurts," Kirstie sighs.

On the second episode, Kirstie enlists her assistant Kyle to find a personal trainer for herself and Jim. And they need that motivation, because Jim doing jumping jacks may be one of the funniest things I have watched in a while. Kirstie has an at home gym, kind of like a Curves set up, but let's be honest. They are pretty half-assed exercisers. Even the Wii is kicking their butts. And Jim, if you are reading this? Don't wear shoes on the Wii balance board. :)

Kirstie states that she hates trainers, but Jim knows the only way they are going to do this properly is to get someone to get them to really push themselves. Not anyone too Jillian, but not anyone too new age fruity.

Kyle brings in a motley crew of PT choices: From Stephen who looks like a pedophile to Dallas who may have been a man at some point, things look bleak until J.R. walks in. Tall, dark, and made out of muscle, Kirstie seems immediately drawn to him and his methods. And his ripped abs. In a somewhat awkward conversation, Kirstie hires him. . .but tells him she isn't used to being around black people. "Aren't you friends with Oprah?" he asks. She laughs (the whole time she has been sitting next to her stylist Kelly who is black) and all is right with the world.

J.R. comes in to give Kirstie and Jim a fit test. Let's be honest- J.R. has his work cut out for him. There is a lot of grunting, groaning, and complaining and this is only the beginning. THE EASY LEVEL. But J.R.'s philosophy is simple: "Hard work is hard muscles." He establishes his client's goals: Kirstie wants to weigh between 130-140 pounds and Jim wants to weigh 195.

I think Kirstie has the fire. Of course, the next morning at 5 AM she tells Kyle to let her go back to sleep and if J.R. calls to not answer. But she is a fighter, that Kirstie Alley. I know she will succeed. Just after she wakes up.

The Biggest Loser Auditions in My Home State. . .

Last year's winner of The Biggest Loser was from Oklahoma, and two of this season's contestants, Cheryl and Daris, are also from Oklahoma.

Know why The Biggest Loser hearts Oklahoma? Because there are a lot of fatty fatkins there. Know how I know? Because I was raised in Oklahoma City and also used to be a fatty fatkins. My father has always struggled with his weight, my aunts and cousins struggle with their weight, my little brother was getting a little chunky there for a while but recently stopped drinking and lost about 15 pounds.

Oklahoma is spread out so you need a car to live there. If you see someone walking or riding a bike you assume it's because they have a DUI, no kidding! Our public transportation system is a joke, and we have SO many drive throughs and restaurant chains. We like to eat because culturally there isn't a ton going on. Don't get me wrong- there is a small community for the arts. But we all know each other because it is so small. Entertainment isn't museums and cafes, it's Cheeseburger in Paradise and a movie at the mall.

I wasn't surprised to see that Biggest Loser hosted auditions this past weekend in Oklahoma City. What surprised me after reading this article courtesy of News 9 in OKC was the amount of people who seem like they simply can't do it UNLESS they are cast on the show. That watching BL kind of makes them want to work out, and maybe sometimes they do. I wish I could shake these folks and tell them they don't need the show. What they need is that burning fire from within and the ability to believe in themselves to want to change. They don't need Bob and Jillian and temptation challenges and weigh ins in front of America with their shirts off.

I like BL for many reasons. I do worry, however, that there is a new crop of obese people that will start using not getting on a reality show for weight loss as yet another excuse for not working out and eating better. Or even quitting smoking, for God' sake. Make sure to watch the video clip in the article and you will see why I feel it is so important for Oklahoma to get healthy.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Week 1 without Insanity

I injured my back/hip one week ago and had to postpone my final week of Insanity (I would have been finished on Monday!!!!) until I am back in business. Since that day I have engaged in gentle yoga and stretching, walking in the park, and yesterday was the first day I tried to ramp it up a bit by doing Tracy Effinger's Squeeze. It was a lot more hip rotation, stretching, and pilates action and I was nervous that it would make my traveling injury seize up again.



I am happy to report that all muscles are fine, still a little sore, but I can move pretty normally. When I say traveling injury, I mean it started in my low back, moved to the middle of my hip, moved to the side of my hip, traveled to my hip flexor and my inner thigh, and today it seems to be focused mid glute. Every day is an adventure with this injury!



I never dreamed I would be out of commission for for a week or more when I ignored my body's warning signs. This has been an excellent lesson. :)

NEW NEWS: The date for my PT test is April 23! Plenty of study to be done between then and now. Please send lots of positive vibes my way!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

First Lady Uses Lady Guns Against Obesity

When I was a kid I never understood why my mother did not want me eating Lucky Charms and Cookie Crisp. I would spend the night at my cousin's house and it was like Christmas morning with the amount of sugary cereals she had to choose from. My house? NutriGrain. Muslix. YOGURT. What was she trying to do to me?



My mom is a little thing- only 5'2" and about 120 pounds on a bad day. She has always had a "food is fuel" mentality, whereas I think food is delish and the more the merrier. Hence why I had a weight problem and she didn't. Looking back, I am thankful that my mom instilled in me those positive food thoughts. Can you imagine if Michelle Obama had been in the White House too? Why, I may not be writing this blog! (Just kidding. I still would have this passion- I just had to take the long hard road to get here.)



The Huffington Post featured this article about our fearless First Lady speaking at the Grocery Manufactures Association. She put the smack down on companies such as Kraft and Coca-Cola about the products they produce. It is refreshing to read that someone is calling out these companies that are mislabeling products as healthy, taking fat out of a product and replacing it with sugar and salt, and supplying our kids with vending machine Frankenfoods.



With new bills being passed to reduce the epidemic of childhood obesity, the Froot Loops and Fruity Pebbles of my childhood may become a distant memory. Have you read the label on a box of Froot Loops? The number one ingredient is SUGAR. Before the grain! And the front of the box has a huge banner that touts it is a nutritious source of fiber. OMG, y'all.



I'm hoping that all these healthy regulations pass and nutritious real foods become the norm instead of a trend. And I hope that the busy mom at Wal-Mart with her four kids running around her won't have to take time out to read the label on that box of cereal because we will all know what's in it. Follow my nose! It always knows!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

BL9- week 8- "Bring Your Loser to Work" Week


I was conflicted on what to call this episode- the aforementioned title OR "O'Neal Rex" OR "Sunshine Complex". This episode was chocked full of the father/daughter relationship of O'Neal and Sunshine, the yellow team that came back with a vengeance after being sent home the first month of the competition.

O'Neal loves his daughter. A LOT. We start the episode with O'Neal nervously sitting at a table, waiting for the losing blue team to return from the elimination room. He knows that someone is going home and he is taking their place- but will it be Sunshine that is going home? Will he have to live in a world WITHOUT SUNSHINE!?!



"I'm about to explode like a volcano," he steams. One after the other the blue team trickles back into the room, and last but not least, Sunshine appears on the horizon. O'Neal slams the table with the palm of his hand and begins to weep. Sunshine, looking a little uncomfortable in front of her teammates, tells O'Neal, "Just calm down. Did you really think I was going home?" O'Neal must have thought that since Miggy was gone that they would naturally vote the other girl off the team. But not every girl is built like Sunshine.

Sunshine gives O'Neal his new blue team shirt, and he exclaims, "WOW! This blue shirt feels fabulous!", and then O'Neal starts to drop some mad wisdom on his new team. They call him Coach or Uncle, but I will call him THE GENERAL. He imparts these gems: "A man that lives in the past doesn't live at all," "We need to come together like a fist. . ." and "BEAT THE BLACK TEAM!" He is in control, and he loves it.

The next day the teams meet Ali on an airport runway for their weekly challenge. She reminds them that for the past 60 days that they have been on the ranch their only job has been to workout, eat right, and get fit. There have been no distractions, until this week. It is work week on The Biggest Loser!

This is a first for the show and I think a really important step. I hear so many people say that of course they could lose weight if they were on the ranch, but their real lives are far too complicated to allow that to happen. Other shows like Diet Tribe and even Celebrity Fit Club let the contestants lead their normal every day lives while learning the tools they need to lose weight. The success rate on BL would be higher if these techniques were incorporated, in my opinion. Not every contestant can be a stay-at-home mother or a personal trainer once the cameras stop rolling.

Ali explains that each contestant will work an 8 hour shift with a bus commute every day. They will have to pack their meals, and the gym will only be available for short periods before and after work. So 24 Hour Gym won't be 24 hours? They will be working for Feeding America, a food bank program. It will be a "long haul", so with no further ado, the challenge!

The teams will be hauling 33,000 pound semis down the tarmac. "I've always wanted to pull a semi!" Daris offers brightly. Five people will pull, and one person will run alongside the truck collecting puzzle pieces that will be assembled once the truck has reached it's final destination. The prize? Groceries for one year!

The deck has been stacked in the blue teams favor. Four big guys and Sunshine versus four little women and Sam. When Ali starts the race, the blue team's semi moves easily, and the black team can't get their semi to budge. Once it starts rolling, the black team catches up a bit when O'Neal is responsible for picking up the puzzle pieces for the blue team: his bum knee slows him down, and black team's Sherry easily closes the gap between the two teams.

The blue team screams and grunts to the finish line, and manages to put all their puzzle pieces together first. Blue team wins! "OHMYGODWEDIDIT!" screams Mike. "We wanted to mentally defeat the black team, "states Koli. Sam retorts, "The real show is the weigh in." It's now officially ON.

Back at the ranch, blue and black reveal to Bob and Jillian how the week is going to play out. Before heading to the gym, Bob pulls O'Neal and Sunshine aside to plug the Biggest Loser protein powder. Jillian tells her team to find "the eye of the tiger" while Bob's team needs to "bust their ass". After the workout, Sam gives his team a speech about sports, and the women look a little glazed over. Something tells me they weren't athletes in their previous lives.

The cameras track the teams day after day as they wake up, work out, ride the bus, clock into work, eat lunch (even in the work day still time for that Subway plug, courtesy of Sam and Stephanie, the new "it" couple), ride the bus, work out, and go to bed. Some interesting moments came out of the week: We see Sherry and Cheryl and their kookie Lucy and Ethel friendship, Mike claiming during inventory that "I don't consider myself the most smartest person," and we are introduced to Steve, an overweight Food Bank inventory clerk and possible BL10 contestant? He comes in to meet the Losers on a lunch break and asks them for words of hope and advice. All of them see themselves in him, and offer words of encouragement and hugs.

After a week full of montages and corny music, it is time for the last chance workout and the weigh in. Before the weigh in, though, we have more Sunshine and O'Neal time. We are shown old family photos of a thinner O'Neal, a man who was a football player and military man, a man who didn't allow his boys to eat junk food, but allowed his only daughter to eat it. And he would eat it too. And together they gained weight, bonding over food. This week is the first week O'Neal doesn't have immunity. Will he be able to come through? Or will the black team and their new slogan, "Little Axe, Big Tree!" prevail?

At the weigh in, the blue team weighs in first:

O'Neal: From 316 lbs to 311 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Sunshine: From 232 lbs to 225 lbs- 7 lbs lost

Mike: From 417 lbs to 408 lbs- 9 lbs lost

Koli: From 316 lbs to 306 lbs- 10 lbs lost

Daris: From 267 lbs to 258 lbs- 9 lbs lost

Lance: From 300 lbs to 290 lbs- 10 lbs lost

Total weight lost: 50 lbs- 2.71%

The black team will have to lose more than 38 pounds to beat them.

Andrea: From 250 lbs to 243 lbs- 7 lbs lost

Ashley: From 301 lbs to 293 lbs- 8 lbs lost

Cheryl: From 187 lbs to 182 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Sherry: From 171 lbs to 166 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Stephanie: From 213 lbs to 210 lbs- 3 lbs lost

Sam: From 290 lbs to 286 lbs- 4 lbs lost

Total weight loss: 32 lbs- 2.27%

The black team couldn't pull out the numbers they needed, and they head to the elimination room. Cheryl and Sam are the lowest numbers, and they say goodbye to their old partners on the blue team. In the elimination room, Cheryl is chosen to leave and she heads back to Oklahoma.

At her reveal, Cheryl looks great! She is cute and fit and kicking ass, going from 227 lbs to 164 lbs.

The next episode promises to be explosive! Nobody puts Jillian in a corner- NOBODY. . .

Monday, March 15, 2010

Celebrity Fit Club Boot Camp- week 5- The Art of War


The title seems more apt for last week's episode. . .how much more drama could there be this week?

The "celebrities" are greeted by Harvey, who tells them they are half way through boot camp. Taneesha utters a sigh of relief, saying she is "50 percent there! Let's get it over with!", which of course brings up that ever burning question in my mind- are these people for real? Are they here for their careers only or do they really want to get healthy?

Harvey asks the "celebrities" if they have ever read "The Art of War" by Sun Tzu: a handbook of warrior training that helps one to identify others weaknesses for the purposes of exploiting them. Each "celebrity" receives there own copy then go off to change and meet together to plan their attack strategy.


"Those who confront the ill-prepared with preparation will stand victorious."- Sun Tzu

At the blue team meeting, Sebastian suggests taking advantage of Bobby's weakness by giving him a bottle of Grey Goose. At the red team meeting, Jay asks Bobby to wake up because he keeps falling asleep. "It's only 42 hours a week. Wake the f**k up!" begs Jay.

"In war you must avoid what is strong and strike at what is weak."- Sun Tzu

The teams gather for an American Gladiator style challenge: a bridge over a shallow swimming pool where the teams will fight each other with puggle sticks and capture the flag. Taneesha immediately panics because of the water, saying "This is like the Titanic all over again!"

Its guys versus guys and girls versus girls! Round one- the ladies. Nicole is knocked in the water immediately, but Shar is a "brick house" according to Kaycee, and knocks Taneesha and Kaycee in the water to capture the first flag. Taneesha freaks out when she falls in the water, screaming "Help! Help!" Sebastian points out that the pool is only three feet deep. "If you stand up, you're not in the water," he laughs.

Round two- Jay is knocked in right away, but Bobby manages to get around Sebastian and Kevin to get the second flag. Round three- Taneesha gets knocked in the water right away, but Kaycee manages to get through Nicole and "the monster" Shar to capture the first flag for the blue team. Round four- Jay is angry and goes after Kevin, but gets knocked into the pool, then Bobby gets knocked in and Kevin grabs the second flag for the blue team. The teams are tied two to two.

Round five is down to the women. Kaycee and Shar are immediately in the water, and it is down to Taneesha and Nicole. "There is no way that Nicole is going to push me in the water," Taneesha says. Nicole goes in for the kill, and Taneesha says, "Yo son, why you grabbing me?" Nicole and Taneesha wrestle to the ground, and Nicole gives up when it gets "a little to street for my liking" and Taneesha grabs the last flag. BLUE TEAM WINS!

At the dead weight vote, Bobby, Nicole, and Shar all vote for Jay. But during the challenge, Jay messed up his back, and needs someone to help him complete the task. He asks for Bobby's help, and Bobby is PISSED. "It's some bulls**t," he whines.

"If the ranks are uneasy, it means the General's authority is in question."
- Sun Tzu

The dead weight task is to scrub the tents clean from last week's challenge. The medic doesn't want Jay to do it, so he helps the little he can, but Bobby is having to do the bulk of the work. And he won't talk to Jay. The red team is starting to disintegrate and Jay doesn't know what to do about it. After the dead weight he talks to Kaycee about how she has pulled her team together, and apparently the fight that the blue team had last week brought them closer together. Jay is "trying to lead by example, but is ignored".

"To be victorious, you must know when to fight and when not to fight."- Sun Tzu

It's day 30, and for the PT challenge Harvey has brought in a former NFL player turned coach to lead the teams in some football drills. The coach tells the teams that when he yells "What time is it?" the teams need to reply "Game time!"

So he yells, "WHAT TIME IS IT?" The teams respond, "GAME TIME!" and Bobby clutches his butt. I can't tell if he farted or pooped his pants. "Sometimes, s**t happens," he offers. He scoots off the field, presumably to change.

The teams are led through some punishing looking football drills, and when Harvey makes comment to Taneesha about her using her "big ass thunder thighs" to bear crawl across the field, she quits and they get into an altercation. Sebastian states, "I saw this last week." After she huffs and puffs, the coach gets Taneesha to try again and she manages to complete the exercise.

Then it's Life Coach Rhonda time! Today's lesson builds on "The Art of War".

"Anger may in time change to gladness; annoyance may be succeeded by content."- Sun Tzu

Rhonda says anger is often unresolved pain. It is important to express your anger and then to let it go. Each person is to state the number one thing that upsets them, write it on a t-shirt or a pillow case, and then beat up a dummy wearing the shirt or rip up the pillow case.

Jay confronts his high school bully. Sebastian talks about how is father left his family for a student he was teaching. Taneesha was involved in fight clubs when she was 5 years old. Nicole is angry at her step mom for bringing up unresolved issues after her father passed away and there was no way to resolve them.

Kevin? Kevin is mad at the people who cut him off on the freeway and don't use their turn
signal. REALLY? Really.

Shar loathes betrayal, and everyone knows she is probably referencing Kevin but she doesn't say Kevin.

It is an emotional meeting for some, and on that note they leave for the fifth week weigh in.

Kevin: Last week: 218 lbs Today: 215 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 3 lbs Next week's goal: 3 lbs

Jay: Last week: 240 lbs Today: 238 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 2 lbs Next week's goal: 4 lbs

Bobby: Last week: 192 lbs Today: 191 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 1 lb Next week's goal: 4 lbs

Kaycee: Last week: 185 lbs Today: 184 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 1 lb Next week's goal: 3 lbs

Shar: Last week: 140 lbs Today: 137 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 3 lbs Next week's goal: 3 lbs

Taneesha: Last week: 229 lbs Today: 229 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 0 Next week's goal: 4 lbs

Sebastian: Last week: 214 lbs Today: 229 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 3 lbs Next week's goal: 4 lbs

Nicole: Last week: 124 lbs Today: 124 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 0 Next week's goal: 3 lbs

It's an emotional weigh in: Big results for Kevin, Shar, and Sebastian, and no weight loss for Taneesha and Nicole. The number one culprit? Alcohol. Apparently no one can say no! And VH1 can't not offer wine at a weight loss boot camp.

The red team is still in the lead, but Kevin from the blue team is the individual leader so far. At the half way mark, some people are succeeding and others are just coasting along. Let's see what next week will hold!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

What I am "F'd Up!" about today! Back Issues and Candelight Yoga

Thanks for all the well-wishes! I love my blog family!
Okay- back issues. I am semi happy to report that I can very slowly touch my toes and pick things up off the ground again. PROGRESS. I also didn't take any ibuprofen today, and have just been relying on my heat pad and yoga. Glorious yoga, fixer and healer!

While at my job on Thursday evening, the first thing a customer did was elbow me in the small of the back. I likened it to getting a scratch on a new car- you're so careful and cautious and sometimes stuff happens. And then you deal with it from there. I knew that I couldn't exist in a plastic bubble and call sick into work and wallow in my own misery. Wallowing would probably pull something anyway.


On Thursday I attempted X Stretch from the P90X series, and it was a little too vigorous for my state. The minute we went into Sun Salutations and I had to swan dive I thought my pelvis was sutured to my spine. So, I dug through the Foster Fitness "archives" (my big storage trunk chocked full of my fitness DVDs) and found a little gem that has saved my life: Crunch Candlelight Yoga featuring Sara Ivanhoe. I did it yesterday and today and I know it is the reason why I can now flex from the trunk!

Sara Ivanhoe has a relaxed, patient voice and is a good cuer. The yoga moves are very basic- cat/cow pose, downward dog, child's pose, tree pose. No super twisty bendy moves- the entire purpose of the DVD is to get you to relax. It would be great to do before bed, or even first thing in the morning if you need something to relax you into your day. It is also only 43 minutes in length, which is great if you don't have a ton of time to commit to a practice.

When I did it Friday, I could barely tilt forward and it hurt to sit in cross-legged position. Today there was mild discomfort, but I could handle it and I could tilt forward. And like I said, no pills! I don't like taking pills. I plan on doing it everyday until I feel back up and ready to tackle that last week of Insanity. MY PLAN is to be doing it this week. Let's hope the back cooperates.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Day 59: Insanity Challenge- BENCHED!


Oh, I have injured myself! MEDIC.


I woke up with a twinge in my lower back area yesterday morning. I took a little ibuprofen, did Insanity Max Cardio Interval Conditioning and my nemesis Cardio Abs, took a little more ibuprofen, went to work, came home. I don't remember if I took any ibuprofen when I got home, but I thought for sure that this twinge would release itself while I was sleeping.


And I woke up this morning and no, it is still here. Cue the ibuprofen.


I am sitting on my couch, alternating between my heating pad and a pack of frozen green beans. I am unhappy. I HATE being uncomfortable. And I hate that this is my LAST WEEK of Insanity, and I have managed to make it this far only to bench myself. I don't know if it will be just for today, or if tomorrow it will do this too?


C'mon lower back. Why are you being such a PUNK?


I am a big believer in listening to your body, working with it day after day, and not being a wiener. But this morning proves that I am not being a wiener, or a whiner, but a winner because I am not risking paralyzing myself to finish Insanity in accordance to the handy wall chart that came with it.


So, fingers crossed, I will be back in business by the weekend. Until then, it's heat, ice, and Housewives on the DVR. And a little stretching. . .

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

BL9- week 7- Mike's Dream Journal

Dear Diary,

It's been a while, right? Last time I came to youse I had just said sayonara to Momma. So much has happened since that day, diary. I won immunity in a challenge that I danced to like Olivia Newton John (love her!). I got to compete in the Winter Olympics as a champion hospital bootie slippery board luger. I made a new best friend in Miggy, and if she wasn't already engaged . . .I might give some serious thought to thinking about the possibility of maybe tapping that.

But this week was a real challenge, diary. I think I may have been given an offer I couldn't refuse and now I have changed the way we are playing The Biggest Loser. Let me paint a picture for youse (wiggling lines like on TV that show we are going back into the not so distant past):

After we got home from the Olympics, we had a weigh in and that bitch Melissa got sent home (praise God) and Darrell and Cheryl were balancing lit torches on their heads to see who was going to go home. After 9 minutes of squatting (Holy Moses, I don't know if I could have ever done that) Darrell's torch fell off and it was real sad to see him go. Lotsa tears. I was glad that Daris still had his mom here and it made me miss my mom.

The next morning I could smell the delicious calling card of one of my fave treats- chocolate chip cookies- wafting through the house. Wassamatta with the people running this show? We gots a ton of fatties, right? Trying to lose weight and do the right thing and they throw a temptation challenge at us involving mountains of cookies!?! Like the troughs of M & M's at the last temptation challenge, I knew that the mountains of cookies on the tables was no good.

We meet Ali, looking super fine as usual, and she tells us the rules of the temptation: Whoever participates and wins gets to decide who is on the Blue team and who is on the Black team. We are back on teams! Right on. The catch? The game involves eating cookies any time you lose a turn. Each cookie is 100 calories. Okay. . .I thinks to myself I can blink and burn 100 calories. What else? The game is like Memory, which I used to play with my moms, and you have to match the foods behind each window. If you make a match, the people you are playing against have to eat the matched food. If you don't make the match, you eat a cookie. What you are trying to find are two golden tickets! Like Willy Wonka! Can you imagine if the Biggest Loser ranch was made out of chocolate? If you find the tickets, you are in control of who gets on what team, with which trainer, and you get to chose the one person who gets immunity.

Sounds easy enough.

Ali asks who wants to participate, and everyone looks scared like the last temptation challenge. I knew that if Melissa was still here she would TOTALLY play. She lives for this stuff. I raised my hand 'cause HELLO! We are playing a game here! And then 'Drea raises her hand! BAM. It's on. We are two single kids, free from our parents, ready to engage in some adult like Memory game activity.

First off, I would like to say in my humble opinion that if the show wants us to lose weight they shouldn't give us challenges that involve eating a buncha crap. Why can't the challenge be who can eat the most bananas or who can put the most apples in their mouth at one time? The game wasn't like that, though. Lemme tell youse, I got real sick from playing this game. REAL sick.

The first couple of tries 'Drea and I revealed some of the foods, but no matches. We were munching away on cookies, trying to find the golden tickets, when 'Drea finds the first match: a peanut butter cup at 80 calories. Luckily, I love peanut butter cups. Then 'Drea finds the second match: a blueberry muffin at 360 calories. Ugh, muffins. Then she finds the third match: a giant pretzel at 340 calories. My stomach is starting to gurgle. And then she finds the fourth match: a fruit pie at 480 calories. I'm turning white and starting to sweat.

Then 'Drea finds half of the golden ticket! Am I screwed? NO! She doesn't find the other half! I get in there, matching a pb and j for 'Drea. Then she matches a Rice Krispy Treat for me at 90 calories, and then she finds a glazed donut at 160 calories. BOB IS GOING TO KILL ME. Her next match fails, giving me the in. I find the other half of the golden ticket and BAM! I WIN!!!

I only had to eat 2,310 calories and victory was mine! I did a little dance and puked in my mouth, just a little.

I now have control of the fate of the players! HA HA HA HA HA HA! I totally know what I am going to do. I'm not here to make friends- I am here to get to the end of the game and win that cool quarter of a mill. For the first time in my life it's all about the Mike.

I sat with you diary, and wrote out all the pros and cons of who was going to be on each team. Then it was time to meet back up with Ali (looking hot!) and reveal my decision.

Sam: Black team

Koli: Blue team

YEAH! Call me lazy and you get your team split up! I told them I thought they would work harder if they were on two different teams and I could tell that Koli was SO PISSED. Hee hee.

Cheryl: Black team

Daris: Blue team

I realized after I separated them that I split up a mother and son and that pained me, but oh well.

'Drea: Black team (even though she wanted to be with Bob)

Lance: Blue team ('cause he's my buddy)

Stephanie: Black team

Miggy: Blue team (my best friend- holler!)

Sherry: Black team

Sunshine: Blue team

Ashley: Black team

And lastly, I gave immunity to O'Neal 'cause he is totally old and I took the last blue shirt. I am on the totally rockinest team EVER! We gots all the fatties over here, and all the little women on that side with Sam! And that's what happens when you mess with the Mike.

Then Bob and Jillian came in and Jillian LOSES HER MIND. She tells me that this is the most unfair scenario possible and I say I didn't make the game! Right, Bob? You told me to look out for myself! And Bob makes a face like, "Did I say that? I said that, didn't I?" and I am like duh! And then it is time to work out. I know Jillian is mad at me, but she is so hot when she is mad.

During the workout, Bob starts calling me cookie because of all the cookies I ate. Bob. What a card.

That night at dinner, no one would sit next to me. I sat there drinking my tea and listening to everyone whispering about what a jerk I am. At least Miggy sat with me, and we discussed a little strategy. I told her, I says "You don't put up a good weight, you're going. You're of no use to me!" and Miggy looked a little pissed. Actually, I couldn't tell, she always looks pissed.

The next day it is time for the first blue vs. black challenge! Ali tells us we will be pulling these huge banners up the side of a building and if we win we get letters from home! I knew we were going to win with all the super strong guys we have on our team. We grunted, we groaned, we screamed, and we sweated.

AND WE WON! Oh, it is so awesome being on a winning team! Nothing can stop us! I read a letter from my best friend Francesca who put in a picture of me when I was my thinnest at 301 pounds- the good old days. I was an Italian stallion. I heard the black team crying about losing, and Sam says, "If we want letters we can work for the post office." What a chump.

The last chance workout was super hard because the black team was really giving it their all. There is no way they are going to win, though. Right?

So, the weigh in. I was nervous and I was totally about to pee my pants.

O'Neal: From 325 lbs to 316 lbs- 9 lbs lost

Me: From 432 lbs to 417 lbs- 15 lbs lost WOO! I beat Rudy and lost over 100 pounds!!!!

Sunshine: From 239 lbs to 232 lbs- 7 lbs lost

Lance: From 305 lbs to 300 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Miggy: From 199 lbs to 195 lbs- 4 lbs lost

Daris: From 274 lbs to 267 lbs- 7 lbs lost

Koli: From 326 lbs to 316 lbs- 10 lbs lost

Blue team lost 48 lbs total and 2.70% body fat

Then it was time for the Black team to weigh in. They need to lose more than 39 lbs to beat us, and at first I am pretty confident, but those little numbers add up. . .

'Drea: From 255 lbs to 250 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Cheryl: From 191 lbs to 187 lbs- 4 lbs lost

Sherry: From 177 lbs to 171 lbs- 6 lbs lost

Sam: From 298 lbs to 290 lbs- 8 lbs lost

Stephanie: From 221 lbs to 213 lbs- 8 lbs lost

Ashley: From 311 lbs to 301 lbs- 10 lbs lost

Black team lost 41 lbs total and 2.82% body fat. Meaning they beat us. Oh, crap.

Lucky for me, I had the highest percentage of body weight lost, so I was immune. And now O'Neal is on our team and with Sunshine, so I guess that is a silver lining. But what happened at the elimination ceremony was a real bummer.

It wasn't supposed to be us- it shouldn't have been us! But it was. And we had to get rid of the weakest person, and that was Miggy. I wanted it to be Lance 'cause honestly? He freaks me out a little bit. And Miggy could knife me. But I said goodbye to my best friend and mom replacement.

So, right now I am the most unpopular guy on campus. Everyone is mad at me. I think I'm going to try to find those cookies. . .


Peace,

Mike

Monday, March 8, 2010

Celebrity Fit Club Boot Camp- week 4- Snot Rockets and Ponchos

I'm not kidding. Snot grosses me out beyond belief and somehow it was prominently featured this week.

"I'm waiting until all this is over to pig the f**k out!" crows Sebastian Bach in the opening bus ride on the way to boot camp. Another sign that these "celebrities" are taking this seriously! They are greeted by Harvey who yells that they need to beat the rain, and everyone goes to change into their fatigues.

The drama is already brewing like the storm clouds above: Sebastian had organized a hike for his team outside of the camp, and the day of Taneesha had sent him a text message canceling on him. He was pissed. Ironically, this week's focus was on teamwork. Can we guess that all hell is going to break loose?

The "celebrities" march through the rain for their fourth fit challenge: The teams must carry heavy supplies up a steep hill, build a tent on top of the hill, and then load the supplies into the tent. The team that finishes first wins.

The hill is a pretty steep incline, and Bobby B immediately has issues getting up it. Jay points out that if Bobby quit smoking it would be easier for him- WAIT. Jay was just seen popping a cig in his mouth last episode. . .did he quit in the last week? Or did he think I didn't notice he was smoking while getting on Nicole about drinking? I digress. Taneesha also can't get up the hill, and we see her flailing and struggling as usual.

Bobby and Jay are nitpicking each other as they struggle with the supplies, and Nicole accuses them of not trying harder. The blue team actually makes it to the top of the hill first, even with Taneesh's struggles, but their lead doesn't last for long. The red team is a wiz with setting up the tent, and the blue team can't quite pitch it. Sebastian loses his temper, screams that he wants a poncho, tries to rip one off of a camera man, and then knocks a camera out of another camera guy's hand. He is pitching a fit instead of a tent. When he knocks the camera over, Taneesha starts yelling at Sebastian and it is ON.

The next few minutes are the Sebastian and Taneesha show, which overshadows the red team's victory at completing the task in 2 hours and 3 minutes. Sebastian and Taneesha drop the f-bomb, insult each other's careers and hair, and Sebastian flips off the camera and then blows a snot rocket towards it while threatening swine flu. NICE.

At the dead weight vote, everyone does the usual I vote for myself routine. . .except Sebastian, who decides to vote for Taneesha because he is bored with the game. All hell breaks loose as promised, and Harvey decides in the first time in Fit Club history that the whole team will be dead weight. They will all break the tents down and carry all the supplies back down the hill.

"We defeated ourselves," says Kevin.

At dinner time, Sebastian shares not to vote for a teammate as dead weight "unless you want to get the gun". Kaycee sits down with Taneesha to encourage her to apologize, and surprisingly she decides to take the high road. Taneesha goes to Sebastian, and he admits the reason he was mad was because she didn't go on the hike with him. She apologizes to him, he apologizes to her, and it is all good.

After dinner life coach Rhonda brings the "celebrities" together for a group viewing of family videos from home. She reiterates the teamwork theme and the importance of support from home to inspire and continue their weight loss.

I thought this part was a little odd, as most of the contestants get to be home during the week and see their wives and girlfriends and children on a daily basis- this isn't like the Biggest Loser where the are shipped to the ranch with no outside contact. But what do I know!

Jay gets a video from his family, and they promise to stop eating so much pizza and kettle cooked chips. Bobby B's dad offers words of encouragement, and he has been through it all: quadruple bypass, diabetes, cancer, quitting smoking. Dilyn, Nicole's daughter, wants her mom to feel confident again. Nicole feels alone because she is a single mother and doesn't have a great adult support structure at home. Rhonda doesn't want her to rely too heavily on her daughter, and she needs to reach out and broaden her support structure.

Video after video shows families that love their "celebrities": Kaycee's husband, Sebastian's wife, Taneesha's cousin. Kevin says it's nice to see them as "regular people".

Then it was Kevin's turn and things got a little uncomfortable. His newest girlfriend Victoria shows him pictures that his children had colored for him. His children with Brittney and Shar, not her children. Shar looks sad as she watches on, but then Shar's video is of her daughter, who tells her she wants her to start dating again and to "beat Dad!".

Feeling warm and cuddly, the "celebrities" go back to their bunks and rise early the next rainy morning before even Harvey arrives. Harvey is smiling and motivated to start his "doggone" day. The teams head to a dance studio (A camp that has a dance studio? Where is this place?) where they learn how to step dance. First of all, Jay has some moves! He can dance AND sew? It was cool to watch Kevin and Bobby finding their joy again, and even Sebastian finally got the hang of it. "We were a team and it felt great!" said Taneesha.

Then it was time for the four week weigh in.

Kaycee: Last week: 190 lbs Today: 185 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 5 lbs Next week's goal: 3 lbs

Nicole: Last week: 126 lbs Today: 124 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 2 lbs Next week's goal: 3 lbs

Taneesha: Last week: 236 lbs Today: 229 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 7 lbs Next week's goal: 4 lbs

Jay: Last week: 244 lbs Today: 240 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 4 lbs Next week's goal: 3 lbs

Kevin: Last week: 222 lbs Today: 218 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 4 lbs Next week's goal: 3 lbs
("Koo.")

Shar: Last week: 140 lbs Today: 140 lbs Goal: 3 lbs Total Loss: 0 Next week's goal: 3 lbs

Bobby: Last week: 197 lbs Today: 192 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 5 lbs Next week's goal: 4 lbs

Sebastian: Last week: 217 lbs Today: 214 lbs Goal: 4 lbs Total Loss: 3 lbs Next week's goal: 4 lbs

The blue team is still above the red team, but only by 4 fit factor points. The individual lead is still Kevin, but Jay is sneaking up.

The weight loss seems to be creeping along, but I am still curious how the "celebrities" are working out during the week and if the weight loss is real or reality show. I waited on Wendy "the Snapple Lady" last year at my restaurant, and she was a two time competitor on the show. She was still big, and she still loved to eat. It's like nothing she learned on the show sunk in. Will this be the fate of the others on the show? As Dr. Ian says, "The scale doesn't lie. . ."

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Day 55: Insanity Challenge

Happy weekend blogophiles! I am at the tail end of my work week (I am a waitress-for-now) and even though my work schedule is crazy late night hours, I wanted to check in. Let you know that I am still breathing. And still working out!

The BF's birthday was amazing, although I did indulge a little too much in the drinky cupcakey birthday things. I took the day off from working out so I could have a full day of merriment, but when it was back to the grind on Thursday I felt bloaty and sluggish. UGH! You truly are what you eat. I was 1/2 a Crumbs bakery cupcake, a cheeseburger, 2 bottles of beer, and some red wine. I sweated it out, even though I didn't really feel like my usual bad ass self.

Tomorrow is the end of my second month third week of Insanity, and next week is the final week! The process has been amazing, and should anyone want to know if Insanity is right for them please ask me. I have been working it out for almost two months and I can answer any insane question you can throw at me!

PLUG: If you have boobs of any shape or size you must get thee to Intimacy, a fancy bra fitting store that only wants the best for your breasts. I found out about it from my fairy godfather Tim Gunn on his show Tim Gunn's Guide to Style where he preached that your undergarments are the foundation of any outfit. I am a chesty lass, and needed new bras to replace the stretched out ones I have been pretending are suitable. AND I wanted a really respectable sports bra.

Intimacy holistically measures you: no measuring tape. The bra fit specialist (mine was Molly at the 62nd and Lexington location) literally can size you up just by looking at you. Then she brought in a lot of bras to try on- so many options and so pretty! I found out that I was not a 38 D like I had always thought, but a 34 DDD. Cup size and band size are completely individual to everyone. I love the ones I purchased and feel like it is something that every women should do. A great fitting bra is really important to a workout, and the difference is incredible.

Plus I look about 10 pounds lighter. And my boobs are back where they should be.

Stay tuned for my end of the week fit test results, new pics, and my blogs on Celebrity Fit Club and The Biggest Loser!!! And a big thank you to my readers and friends for the positive comments and cheering on through this challenge. YOU ALL ROCK!!!!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Day 51: Insanity Challenge- NEW PHOTOS and FIT TEST RESULTS!

Hola, ya'll! Happy Tuesday! Tomorrow is the BF's birthday, and I just spent a few hours trekking around the Big Apple in search of the perfect gifts! I felt like I burned a million calories walking and carrying heavy bags around. (Shhh- I don't want to reveal gifts until I have given them! What if he read this post?)

Today was day 51 of my Insanity challenge- that is week 3 of month 2, or 51 days out of 63 days. I can't believe it is almost over! The great part of owning the Dvds? I can go back in a couple of months and be insane all over again. Feel the burn.

I completed the fourth Fit Test yesterday and here are the results:

Switch Kicks: Day 1- 120 Day 15- 118 Day 36- 148 Day 50- 135

Power Jacks: Day 1- 56 Day 15- 53 Day 36- 62 Day 50- 69

Power Knees: Day 1- 102 Day 15- 110 Day 36- 114 Day 50- 123

Power Jumps: Day 1- 35 Day 15- 32 Day 36- 40 Day 50- 42

Globe Jumps: Day 1- 10 Day 15- 11 Day 36- 13 Day 50- 13

Suicide Jumps: Day 1- 18 Day 15- 19 Day 36- 22 Day 50- 22

Push-Up Jacks: Day 1- 30 Day 15- 34 Day 36- 45 Day 50- 55

Low Plank Oblique: Day 1- 55 Day 15- 74 Day 36- 78 Day 50- 80

I am growing in leaps and bounds! On the exercises where I stayed the same, I honestly don't know how I can complete any more in the time allotted (I only have one minute). I am amazed by my verifiable progress!

On the measurements front, I am down 2.5 pounds from 2/8/10, down one inch on my waist (30 inches!), 1/2 an inch on my hips (33.5 inches!), 1 1/2 inches off my chest (33.5 inches!) and my legs and arms have stayed the same.

33.5, 30, 33.5? Only if she's 5'4"! (Thanks Sir Mix-a-lot!)

And here are the pics, lovingly spliced together by my BF. They were taken on the first day, mid way through, and yesterday.


I can see more of my belly button! I feel like I am losing the hippiness and toning up all over- my legs and arms look hot! And yes, that is my dog Magenta sitting in the same place both times. She wanted to see her results too, apparently.

I wonder how much more I will change by day 63? I'll keep you posted. . .

Monday, March 1, 2010

BL9- week 6- "Let the Games Begin!"


The last time the Biggest Loser was on it was before the start of the Olympics, Jay Leno was on the air at 10:00 pm, Valentine's Day hadn't happened, and we had left the contestants in a precarious position: Orange team Cheryl and black team Darrell were squatting with burning torches balanced on their heads.

How did we get there?

To retrace our steps, we begin at the end of week 5, where brown team John has just been eliminated and Koli is un-KOLI-solable. Ali announces to the Losers that they will be taking a little trek to the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado for one whole week! Everyone is loaded into a space ship, shot into orbit, and brought down into Colorado, or at least that is how NBC showed it. Maybe they took airplanes, I don't know. Or Jillian flew them on her invisible jet.

The Losers arrive at the center, decked out in team colored winter gear (they actually found a knit cap to fit around Daris' fro!) where they are greeted by Ali and the instructions for the weekly game: Everyone will compete as individuals, there will be a red line that if fallen below means immediate elimination, and a yellow line that two contestants will fall below and one will be eliminated. Melissa points out to us that being split from Lance is different for them than ALL the other contestants because they are married. I guess when they took their vows it also included if they ever were ever to be on a televised weight loss reality show.

They are joined by Allison Jones, member of the US Paralympic Team in skiing and cycling. Born with only one leg, her mother raised her to be a competitive athlete and she has won 4 medals. She never let being disabled slow her down. To kick off the week, Allison carries the torch (not the same torch that was used during the games, I noticed in my re-watching) and passes it to other Losers until they reached the Olympic Training Center torch receptacle and they light it up! Not as cool as the big icy looking thing at the opening and closing ceremonies at the actual winter games. . .but symbolic. Mike says, "I never would have guessed I would be [here] with all these athletes!" We never did either, Mike.

The teams check into their rooms and pick up their celebrity swag: Flags autographed by the athletes-in-residence. Lance gives a hearty guffaw as he exclaims, "Being fat got my to the Olympics!" Not quite, Lance. You are staying at the building where people TRAIN for the Olympics. It's like me saying I was ambassador to France because I took a tour of the UN.

The next morning the Losers meet in the Olympiteria to talk with USOTC nutritionists Adam and Laura to discuss the nutritional requirements for an Olympic athlete. The calorie range? Anywhere from 1,600 to 8,000 calories a day. 8,000? What sport does that fuel? And when can I start training for that?

Oddly, there is a dessert carousel in the Olympiteria that we find Stephanie pressing her face against. Bob talks her down with an Extra Sugar Free Gum plug. Because gum may be just as satisfying as eating a piece of cake.

Then it is time for a little drama with Koli and Sam. Koli just can't get over that John is gone, saying, "I can't get John off my mind!" He feels unworthy of still being on the show and wants to run away from his problems just like he always runs away. I feel that there is something else going on upstairs with Koli and he is just saying it's because he is sad about John to get those feelings out. Or they were really tight. We don't see everything that happens in their down time! Koli decides he needs to let his walls down, then run into those walls, and let the aforementioned walls beat him down.

First training! The Losers meet with alpine skier Julia Mancuso and free style skier Speedy "Cutie Pie" Peterson with Bob and Jillian for some old school circuit training. They do the agility ladder, the punching bag, push ups, hula hooping while balanced on a Bosu ball (that looks crazy hard). Jillian tells the athletes, "If they mess up feel free to punish them."

Speedy asks Bob, "Think these guys need a break?" to which Bob replies, "No, they don't get a break. They can rest after the Olympics!"

After the punishment, er. . .workout, Bob takes Koli aside and lights the Olympic fire under his depressed butt. To further illustrate this point, NBC cuts to an image of the lit Olympic flame.

Pop Challenge! Ali greets the Losers with J.R. Celski, Olympic short track speed skater and reason why I don't wear ice skates (he sports a 4-inch scar on his thigh where he gouged himself 2 months before). The challenge emulates speed skating on a slide board. The Losers must skate from side to side, touching the sensors on each side 500 times. The winners will win gold, silver, and bronze prizes for first, second, and third place finishes.

J.R. demonstrates and makes it look easy. When the Losers get on the boards, it is a little more of a challenge. Thanks camera crew for shaking the camera like an earthquake any time someone fell! Way to drive that over weight message home. Melissa and Sam fight for the gold, but Melissa lands on her butt and Sam takes the win! Melissa wins silver, and Sunshine goes for bronze. Ali promises what they have won will be revealed at the challenge, so star swipe to. . .

The Challenge! The Losers meet at the Garden of the Gods state park with Ali and paralympic athlete Kelly Underkofler, who was born with only half an arm. She is a paralympic shooter and competes in the biathlon, a mix of cross country skiing and shooting. Instead of skiing, the Losers will be running, and instead of real rifles they will be using laser guns. Lance snorts, "I gots this in the bag!" claiming his shooting skills puts food on the table, literally. I imagined a roast squirrel or possum.

The game isn't just shooting willy nilly: The Losers have to chose the target of the opponent they want out of the game. When all five of the targets have been shot, they are out. Ali reveals the advantages to the winners of the pop challenge: Sunshine can hit one target now, Melissa can hit two targets now, and Sam can hit three targets now. Sunshine chooses Sam, Melissa chooses Sam, and Sam splits his between Sunshine and Melissa. So now they are all screwed.

The strongest and youngest competitors are out of the game quickly, leaving Darrell and O'Neal to duke it out. You know it is a weird game when those two are the last Losers standing. O'Neal beats Darrell by microseconds, winning immunity for the week.

The Losers are rocketed back into orbit, and land safely in LA and, of course, a 24 Hour Fitness where they are greeted by Bob, Jillian, and Rock Brubaker who is one half of an Olympic pairs figure skating team. Rock leads the Losers in a Bootcamp class, where Bob encourages Rock to "Beat them up!", and then they finish the rest of the last chance workout.

Touching moment! O'Neal manages to balance on a Bosu ball and squat, getting Sunshine to squeal, "He's squatting! He's squatting!"

Then it is back to the ranch for the weigh in! We are reminded yet again about the ominous red line and the yellow line. For the first time, the Losers are weighing in as individuals.

O'Neal: From 333 lbs to 325 lbs- 8 lbs lost
Mike: From 443 lbs to 432 lbs- 11 lbs lost (not quite the 100 lbs in 6 weeks goal)
Stephanie: From 225 lbs to 221 lbs- 4 lbs lost

Sunshine: From 245 lbs to 239 lbs- 6 lbs lost

Koli: From 335 lbs to 326 lbs- 9 lbs lost

Andrea: From 262 lbs to 255 lbs- 7 lbs lost

Darrell: From 343 lbs to 338 lbs- 5 lbs lost

Sam: From 310 lbs to 298 lbs- 12 lbs lost

Sherry: From 180 lbs to 177 lbs- 3 lbs lost

Ashley: From 317 to 311 lbs- 6 lbs lost

Daris: From 283 lbs to 274 lbs- 9 lbs lost

Cheryl: From 194 lbs to 191 lbs- 3 lbs lost

Miggy: From 206 lbs to 199 lbs- 7 lbs lost

Lance: From 314 lbs to 305lbs- 9 lbs lost

Melissa: From 198 lbs to 199 lbs- 1 lb gain


One pound GAIN!?! Melissa is below the red line and therefore is immediately eliminated. Here are some choice lines from this season's bad girl:

"I can't figure out my body."

"I don't trust my body."

"What's wrong? What's the problem?"

"At least I get to see my kids."

"I think it should be me because everyone else has more serious medical problems."

"Keep Lance motivated because he can't come home before 250."

To Lance: "Do what you know you have to do."

To Lance: "I'm going home. Don't follow me."

Bob whispers in her ear, "I'll take really good care of your husband," and Melissa vanishes into the dark mist back to Texas.

Due to body fat percentages, Cheryl and Darrell are below the yellow line. Ali throws out a twist: There won't be a vote tonight because the contestants will go head to head in an elimination challenge like The Real World/Road Rules challenge. Cheryl and Darrell have to balance lit torches on their heads until one of them loses the torch and the flame goes out.

And we have come full circle in a two week cliff hanger! Who will be going home this week? Tune in to find out. Same fat time. Same fat channel.