This is the episode I've been waiting for... I know I say that every week... but really this week was jam-packed with awesome! We had past contestants, emotional breakthroughs, letters from home, Skype time with family, and the most amazing moment yet, a shirtless Bob Harper... Yes, you read that right he took his shirt off. Lawsy!
We start off this episode with some familiar faces to help encourage the contestants. Who are those familiar faces you ask? Well, they are former contestants Marci Crozier, Adam Hurtado, and the lovely and ever inspiring Hannah Curlee (love ya BananaPants)!! I can tell you that having past contestants come and spend time with you at the ranch is priceless. They not only can empathize with what you're going through, but they provide a sort of "light at the end of the tunnel." I remember in my season when Tara Costa and Ali Vincent came to visit, I just wanted to pick their brains clean. Here were two amazing women that not only were incredibly successful on the show, but they continue to be such amazing examples of health and fitness.
Anyway, each of these returning guests was assigned to a team for the day. Hannah was with the Black Team. Marci worked with the Blue Team, and Adam hung with the Red Team. I really enjoyed seeing each of these past contestants really mentor and encourage these teams. Paying it forward is EXACTLY what BL is ALL about!
The challenge this week was just plain cool... AND to add to the awesomeness was the prize: LETTERS FROM HOME!!! Yes, I am yelling... Why? Well, I can tell you that when you receive letters from home while on the ranch, it's like you're being given solid gold. Seriously, I craved letters from my husband. I would go back and reread them when I needed comfort or encouragement, and I can truly say they kept me going every day! Okay, so the premise of this challenge was to pass a clear box of letters from contestant to contestant through an obstacle course. The team that completed the course with their box won! This was not just any old obstacle course... No, no... it was through the elements. There was wind, mud, water, snow and rain. Not to mention a mountain to climb at the end! It was once again a close finish between the Red and Black Teams, but in the end, the Black Team was victorious. Seriously, they are unstoppable!!! Alison had an extra bonus prize for the winning team... Skype time with their loved ones. Awwwww... bring out the Kleenex! Who else LOVES seeing these contestants talk to their families? I have to admit, it's always my favorite part of each season. We hear these contestants talk about how much they love their families, and now we get to put faces with names. I cried at the first hello... so good for the heart!
Okay, so like I said, there were a few breakthroughs this episode. One of the breakthroughs that really struck a chord with me this week happened with Joe on the Black Team. It was at the end of a Black Team workout, and Bob told his team that this week they were going to concentrate on nutrition. This seemed normal until he said they were going to take a close look at the emotional side of food. Bob goes on to tell the team that food will no longer be "taboo" in their lives. No longer will they continue to eat in private, or be ashamed of eating a piece of pizza or a scoop of ice cream. In that moment Joe broke down. What I loved is the sheer honesty in his willingness to admit that he had been "cheating" on his family with food. Wow. How many of you have felt like that? It really hit home for me. I used to be so ashamed of what I used to eat. Joe spoke about eating in his car and throwing away the evidence before going home. Bob told his team that it's okay for these foods to be in your life, but it's not going to be a daily indulgence. He continued to explain that as you are able to incorporate food into your life in a healthy way, you are literally getting your power back, one bite at a time! Such empowering words to live by.
Another breakthrough moment that really stuck out was with Courtney. Dolvett noticed that Courtney had been struggling mentally, and to help her gain confidence he took her out to the basketball court for some one-on-one. As she began to shoot hoops you could literally see the self-doubt melt from her mind one hoop at a time. I really loved this moment not only because of the mental breakthrough, but we really viewed a special moment... we watched Courtney become an athlete. It was so awesome to see her insides and outsides shake hands and become friends.
Last-Chance Workouts were extra special this week. The Black Team had a pool workout with Bob where he really killed them by doing exercises... Wait, who cares about the workout... BOB TOOK OFF HIS SHIRT. I don't remember anything beyond that moment. Seriously, that man is beautiful. The Blue Team received a special gift... a tennis court! I have to agree with Becky on this one... a tennis workout with a professional tennis player... so freaking cool! Dolvett was out for blood, and gearing for a win this week. There was no doubt in this workout that he was taking no prisoners and setting up the Red Team for a strong win.
The weigh-in was not incredibly exciting. In Week 4, you are really struggling for strong numbers. At this point you have lost the "easier" initial weight, and we begin to see the real fight on the scale begin. The Black Team brought strong numbers, and once again won the weigh-in. Again, duh. In the end, Ramon pulled an incredibly impressive 11 pounds to keep his team safe. We really are seeing a new Ramon now... and I have to tell you I'm diggin' it! Once again, the Blue Team headed into the elimination room. After a tearful decision, Bonnie's final vote sent Coach Mike home.
Whew!! See, jam-packed! Okay, now it's your turn... what did you think?? Any predictions yet as to a Final Four?? Tell me below in the comments!!
Question from last week:
Heather Linn asked: How do you stay motivated?
I get asked this question all the time. I wish I could say I figured this out on my own, but this I learned directly from Bob. You know life is full of tons of choices... from what am I going to wear today, to the harder stuff like am I going to love myself today? That being said we make choices all day long... some good, some not so good. Motivation is simply a choice. Bob taught me to wake up daily and ask myself a simple question... Am I going to make good choices today? It takes five seconds, but sets my mind for the whole day. I literally choose to stay motivated and make good choices for ME! You can't do it for anyone else. So, I encourage you to ask yourself that question each day... the choice is up to you!
Health & Happiness,