how my week of tears became my year of sweat

I watched The Biggest Loser last night. No news there; I’ve been a fan of the show for several seasons now. Last night was different though.

Now, I’m not just watching a reality TV show, but I feel a unique connection to it. I’ve actually experienced ‘a day in the life’. Scratch that. I have experienced a week in the life!

I’m not gonna lie, the Russian Princess and I were super disappointed when we realized that the resort we were staying at wasn’t the place where they actually film the show. Oh, but when we found that the “real” Biggest Loser ranch was just a few miles down the road you better believe we pointed the GPS in that direction immediately.

Here I am at the entrance to the gym:


While the exterior grounds are open to the public [or so we told ourselves], most [probably all] of the buildings are off-limits [not to mention under the vigilant watch of security guards]. Likely due to the fact that they were actually filming season 14 at the time.

Being the naughty monkeys we are, the Russian Princess and I decided that those rules didn’t apply to us, and we began exploring the property.

First we snuck into the gym:


Then we discovered the weigh-in room, an annex to the gym, and ….SQUEE!!… we even got to stand on the scale!!

Sadly, it wasn’t turned on, so we never got the answer to Alison Sweeney’s famous opening… “And your current weight is…”

Regardless, here I am, playing all nervous at the results of my weigh in.


We approached the main residence to see if we could sneak in; unfortunately that’s when the Po-Po shut us down.

We even tried flashing them our official “credentials” (our name badges from The Biggest Loser Resort). No dice. They told us we were not welcome.

Thanks a lot Fun Police, way to kill our dreams.

Watching the show now, having had the experience of visiting the ranch, is a lot of fun – but also evokes some strong emotions. After the two-part premier last week, the Russian Princess and I exchanged texts.

hey, just watched it…got pretty emotional, said she.

me too… cried like a baby, I replied.

It’s the contestants’ 3rd week at the ranch; their individual stories are starting to be told. And, for the first time in all the seasons I’ve been watching, I find myself feeling somewhat embarrassed, almost voyeuristic. It feels different to observe their raw emotion; their deep-seated pain and fears.

Maybe because for the first time, it really hits home for me.

One contestant, Pam, has had a couple of meltdowns. More than that though, she seems to be sabotaging herself. She tells Jillian she can’t. She tells herself she can’t. I found myself so angry with her last night.

And then I realized I was Pam.

My week at Fitness Ridge started out badly. As in epic fail badly. It all went downhill following the very first workout, a 2.5 hour hike Monday morning.

Despite being a regular hiker, I found myself inexplicably struggling.

My heart rate was off the charts; I was in an anaerobic state the entire hike.

This gave me huge anxiety. I got way too deep into my own head. “If you’re anaerobic, you’re not burning fat. You’re here to burn fat. What are you doing? Slow down. I can’t slow down. I don’t want to be last.”

The physical struggle took a back seat to the psychological struggle and self flagellation I was subjecting myself to.

This craziness lasted for FOUR days out of my one week stay at the resort.


Yup. I’m stupid that way.

But, hold on, no I’m not.

I’m smart. I’m capable. I’m driven. I’m goal-oriented. So….. WHY WAS I SABOTAGING MYSELF???

I will tell you that I cried more that week than I have in the past 10 years. I was an emotional basket case. I didn’t even recognize myself. It was …gross. Awful. Hard.

It was My Week of Tears.

Enough tears to fill a dry river bed with crazy white water rafting-style currents.

I was terrified, and I had a decision to make. I could either give into my fear or acknowledge that fear and do it anyway.

I decided to grab some paddles and a life jacket, and navigate those choppy waters.

And something magical happened; I had a breakthrough. One that I promise to reveal more about in coming posts.

And now, dear friends, I need want to go workout. Today is day 15 of 365 consecutive days of sweat. And off I go.

Get moving!

xoxo nancy

11 thoughts on “how my week of tears became my year of sweat

  1. Planning a re-union hike this week w/Pauline, Linda & Michelle! We’ll miss you guys 🙂 I now watch the show ever Monday nite!! It amazing and inspirational ( just like you are)!! Keep at it and stay sore!

  2. I miss you guys so much! Say hi to everyone for me – and tell Pauline I wish she would hike in her funky zumba outfit! 😉 Let’s plan a reunion in Vegas and do some hiking here!!!

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  6. Love this. Your honesty in your journey really gets me. And inspires me. I think to really grow we must be broken. Seems like you were pretty broken. Totally sucks in the middle of it but the lessons we learn from those are the best and longest-lasting, I find…

    “I found myself so mad at her last night. And then I realized it was because I was Pam.” This happens to me so often lately. It’s crazy. I’m a slow learner, I guess.

    Your blog rocks.


    • There are a handful of posts I’ve written where I feel like I really dug deep to uncover what was going on (besides the sweat). This was the first of those. Thank you so much for sharing in my journey, G. It means more to me than I could every properly convey.
      xoxo nancy

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  8. I agree with Ginny Love More – your honesty is remarkable in your writings, and you’re inspirational. As much as I like your humor, your account of your journey is equally entertaining.

  9. Pingback: confessions of a control freak | my year[s] of sweat!

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