The Biggest Loser: Season 15, Episode 12

Note: This post may (well, honestly it WILL) contain spoilers from last night’s episode of NBC’s The Biggest Loser. So, if you have yet to watch the episode and don’t want to be spoiled, please come back later. But, please DO come back. 🙂

This week, the contestants travel to Utah to the Olympic training center. Talk about an awesome field trip! The problem is, whenever previous season’s contestants took trips, weight-loss got rough. It’s a tougher schedule and trainer Bob constantly speaks of that issue.

We open with handheld video from the contestants of them packing, getting to the airport and on the plane to Utah. Seat belt successes on the plane as well! It’s already a happy scene as they depart and head for the Olympic training grounds in Utah.

(photo: Marie Pearl's collection)

(photo: Marie Pearl’s collection)

Upon arriving at the Utah Olympic training center, they are greeted by Dolvett. He quickly introduces Olympian Apolo Ohno. Chelsea has a big smile on her face, she comments in her interview later how cute he is. Apolo talks to the contestants briefly about his history with sports and the Olympics. He congratulates them so far on what they have accomplished. He speaks about how he’s been through a lot of tough times and how his father encouraged him. “We all go through our struggles and issues in life,” Apolo tells them all.

The contestants then go and workout in the same gyms and fitness arenas as the Olympians. Jay is excited and can’t imagine what training is like for Olympians like Apolo. Both Dolvett and Apolo Ohno are putting them all through their paces. Apolo continues to encourage them all through their workouts. You have to know exactly what I have to do today, he explains about getting it done.

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Dolvett has them doing 100 burpees. Tanya comments, “I thought Dolvett was joking when he said 100 burpees.” He sure wasn’t! He isn’t taking any less from this group than every ounce of what they can put out while they are in Utah. Tanya says she needs to work hard to stay above that yellow line this week. Apolo speaks one-on-one with Rachel telling her that, “it starts here,” pointing to his head. He goes on about how it’s all mental. You have to mentally train yourself to succeed. Rachel’s mental light has been switched on and she needs to keep it that way.

Everyone is working out hard, cycling, running on the indoor track, they are pushing themselves. “Every week, I’m getting stronger,” David says. He is able to talk to Apolo about his past football accomplishments. David knows he is strong and can do anything he puts his mind to.

After the workout, Dolvett pulls everyone aside for a quiet time of reflection. It’s time for the contestants to think back at where they were on day one and how far they’ve come up until now. The person they were that first day when they stepped onto the Ranch isn’t the same person that is in Utah today. Dolvett gives them encouragement to keep moving forward and believing in themselves because he believes in them.

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Inside their home for the week, the contestants are realizing how it’s harder to eat when they aren’t on the Ranch like they are used to. Not to mention that their schedule while they are at the Utah Olympic training center, their days are not like they are used to. They don’t have their kitchen with the food they usually have on the Ranch, it’s just a different environment for them. On the flip side, one contestant left the Ranch prepared. Rachel prepped and packed her food before leaving for Utah. She shows Jennifer her suitcase packed full of food that she brought with her on the plane. Talk about planning for success!

If they contestants are questioning their nutrition while in Utah, Bobby is definitely the one with the most uncertainty. He is nervous about this trip and how it’s affecting him. He is having a tough time eating, day one has already had him going off his usual plan. He needs to learn to keep it together no matter where he might be.

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Alison Sweeney greets the contestants on the ice with their first challenge in Utah. They meet three female U.S. Olympic curling team members and now have to compete in their own curling competition. Each one will have their own curling stones each weighing 100lbs which they have to push into a red target. Whoever wins the challenge will get $5,000. There will be three heats to determine the winner. Rachel and Bobby win the first heat, followed by David and Chelsea winning the second heat. The third and final heat pits these four against one another. Rachel comes out the winner and takes home the money. The others are now really seeing Rachel as a threat, a big competitor in this game. Rachel understands this, but she is now okay with that pressure and can handle it. Bobby mentions that if she falls below that yellow line, she will likely be sent home. This is exactly the reason that Jay wanted to avoid winning this challenge. He wants to keep himself away from being seen as a threat by the others.

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Later, they are all outside with Bob Harper. He is explaining to them how difficult traveling is for contestants and has always been known to cause weight gain. It is a tough time for everyone being away from the norm they have gotten used to on the Ranch. He reminds them how important it is this week to stay above that yellow line. With that, he has them working an obstacle of exercises. First, they run a zig-zag around some flags, followed by bar lifting, kettle bell swings and a medicine ball. Last up is carrying each other on their back. “I can smell the competition” Bob states as he pushed them to move in this mini-competition of sorts. Marie hates to lose and is ready to really kick it in gear. When it comes time to carry Bobby on her back, she is all for it, no hesitation. She hauls it and runs full out across the field while carrying him. “I’ve never been so attracted to a woman in my life,” Bobby later comments about the experience.

At this point, the contestants are all trying to see themselves as athletes and as actual competitors. Chelsea likes to believe she’s at least a bit of a threat. “It’s more of a competition now, people are thinking about the finale,” she comments. “My one goal is to stay above the yellow line,” states Marie. David thinks that Jay and Rachel are super-fit at this point and are the competition, especially when it comes to the end game of the triathlon. He believe that they are both so athletic.

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Meanwhile, Bob is trying to really push Bobby. Bob thinks that he needs more pushing, that he needs to push himself more than he has up until now. Once the others finish the workout, Bob has a one-on-one with Bobby. Bobby tells Bob that he’s been struggling, and how he is concerned with his eating being away from the Ranch. Bobby admits that the pressure on day one here in Utah got to him and he didn’t eat well. Bob explains that he needs to find new tools to cope with this nutrition aspect. Bob is concerned that Bobby is just not ready to go home again yet and this old eating behavior needs to be healed.

The next morning, Bob surprises everyone and comes in to make them breakfast. After his conversation with Bobby, he’s concerned that they all are struggling being away from the Ranch. He wants to get all of the contestants on the same page. He teaches them how to cook healthy breakfast frittas with Jennie-O. They are impressed with how low in calories and delicious they are.

Dolvett and Rachel are outside later. Dolvett wants to “meet” the daughter Rachel as he knows the swimmer, but he wants to know more about her on another level. Rachel tells him about how when she stopped swimming, how things just started to fall apart for her. It was the one thing that she and her dad were able to relate on, and without it, they drifted apart. About six months after her decision, her parents got a divorce and it just got tougher. This started her overeating. When she told her dad that she was going on Biggest Loser, they began to connect with letters. Things are starting to get better, but it was always the sports that connected her and her father. She missed that connection with him.

We then get an update on Tumi, with her where are they now segment. Tumi now weighs in at 180lbs and is still working hard since she is still not at her goal weight. When she got home after being eliminated, she was greeted to a warm welcome by family and friends. Her sister, who she hasn’t seen in over a year was there and they have now become closer again. She also met someone and is now engaged to get married! “There is no doubt, this is a new start for me,” Tumi says.

A trip to Utah just makes having another challenge more fun. This time, the contestants are outside at the Bob Sledding track. As they are standing there with Ali, a bob sled speeds by them which fills them with excitement. “It litterally sent chills up my spine, it was so cool,” Jay comments thrilled by the experience. They are introduced to Lolo Jones and Jazmine Fenlator of the U.S. Bob Sledding team. Lolo is a an Olympic track & field athlete who just joined the bob sled team. She is hoping to medal at the upcoming winter Olympics after a troubling performance in Beijing and London. Lolo explains to the contestants how she is not letting failure define her, so she is going back out there to succeed. She encourages the contestants to push and they can achieve something great.

Now, onto the challenge! Ali informs them that they are going to compete like the Olympians since they are here at the training grounds. The winner gets a 1lb advantage on the scale this week. They have to run the bob sled track which is not going to be easy. The track is over a mile long with a climb of 400 feet. At this point, they are 7,000 feet up, which is where the starting line is. They are lined up according to weight lost. As soon as Ali starts the race, Jay quickly takes the lead, followed closely by Rachel. She may have had the first spot out of the gate, but Jay didn’t let her keep it. The further they get on this track, the thinner the air is and it begins to test their limits. Jay says that his lungs are feeling as though they are on fire. He’s beginning to struggle. Rachel uses this opportunity to push herself to take the lead and passes him. Further back, Jennifer states that, your legs burn, your lungs burn,” in describing how this run on the track is feeling. Rachel still has the lead, and Jay isn’t happy about it, he hates to lose. Rachel is amazed at her progress in the last few months that she’s been on the Ranch. She then spots that finish line, “…I just ran through that finish line.” She wins it strong. Jay follows not far behind, with the others also finishing. None of them are giving up, even if they aren’t getting that prize. Marie has learned that her best is okay, she doesn’t have to be number one. She just has to do her best and she has succeeded. “It’s about finishing my own race,” David says, “getting to the top of the mountain we have to climb.” With that, Ali “medals” Rachel with her 1lb advantage and she gets to take a bob sled ride back down the track. “This is awesome!” Rachel says about the experience.

Bobby is talking to his handheld video diary about how at the beginning, the start of this week he struggled with food. But, he thinks that he has since gotten a better handle on it and hopes that future traveling will be easier for him because of this experience.

Marie is fearing this weigh-in and that dreaded yellow line, as is Jay and the rest of the group. The yellow line is on their mind big time. Rachel is aware of the target that is now on her back. She knows that if she falls below the yellow line, she is definitely at rick of going home.

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Last Chance Workout time! They are getting the opportunity to do this in the Center of Excellence. All three trainers are there and explain how exclusive this center is to Olympic athletes. Jillian focuses right away on Marie and Jennifer. She thinks that Marie’s new focus on the Finale may be able to help push Jennifer more. Dolvett begins to work one-on-one with Cowboy Hat Jay. Jay feels like he kind of relates to Lolo Jones as she is still chasing a medal like he’s chasing the rodeo again. Meeting her impacting him. Everyone is really pushing it during this final workout in Utah. Lots of hard cycling going on. Tanya doesn’t want to fall below that yellow line this week again. Each contestant gets one-on-one workouts with the trainers in between the group workout. “I feel like the dreams I came here with are actually possible,” Marie says about how bright her future is now.

Jennifer is back working on her box jumps. She is still scared of them, just as she was with Bob back on the Ranch. She just can’t bring herself to get over that fear. Jillian is trying to get her to do it. She tells her that she believes in her and knows she can do it. “throw yourself on this box with reckless abandon,” the trainer tells Jennifer. She keeps trying to jump, but her fear overtakes her and she just cannot do it. Jillian then takes her outside to talk to her. Jillian tells her that she needs to let this fear go. Whatever the dialogue or story is about inside of her not being able to do it, she has to let it go. Jennifer admits that she just doesn’t feel good enough. She feels as though she is second best and not good enough. “The only person you can ever be good enough for is you,” Jillian responds. “It’s your story and you’re sticking to it….you have to tell your story.” The trainer goes on to tell Jennifer that she is a pretty awesome person and that she knows she can do this if she just loses the fear. Back inside, Jennifer stares down the box again. She jumps and does it, twice! How big and awesome of an accomplishment for her! This was a big step for her in her journey. “I know now that I can do anything I want,” Jennifer says.

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Time for the weigh-in. They are stationed outside in the cold at the nordic ski jump. The contestants are excited to be there in this location, but they are all freezing in the cold temps. Bob speaks briefly about how it’s always a tough thing to travel on Biggest Loser. He has always seen some bad numbers due to how hard the experience can be. With that, it’s time to see where everyone stands this week.

Rachel is up first, and she looks confident. She loses 6lbs for a current weight of 155lbs. Talk about rocking it! She really has done amazing and that’s not even including her 1lb advantage that she won at the challenge. Up next is Jennifer, who loses nothing. She remains at 189lbs, the way she left the Ranch at the beginning of the week. Jennifer says this does not surprise her because of how she felt this week. “Zero will not define me at all,” she states.

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David then steps up to the scale and loses 4lbs for a current weight of 266lb. “I feel like I won with that number,” David comments, content with his loss this week. Marie follows and drops 5lbs for a current weight of 178lbs. Marie is excited with this and says it’s a huge deal to her to accomplish what she has. Chelsea is next and loses 3lbs for a current weight of 168lbs. Chelsea is also happy with her current weight and stats that she has not been in the 160s since she was a teenager.

Tanya is now up and she loses 2lbs for a current weight of 196lbs. She says that her focus was to enjoy this week and she did that. Jay is next and gains 1lb for a current weight of 193lbs. This surprises David at his friend’s gain, but Jay isn’t at all surprised at it. Last up is Bobby, who gains 2lbs for a current weight of 266lbs. Bobby says he is also not surprised due to his food struggles early on, but is disappointed.

So, both Jay and Bobby are now below the yellow line this week. The trainers leave and it’s now just the contestants and Alison Sweeney. Ali gives them a moment to tell the others why they want to stay. Jay says he has only one goal left, to be there until makeover week. Bobby on the other hand, talks about how Jay is a strong competitor and how he still wants to be there as he has a lot to lose at this point and needs to be there. Sadly, Jay gets voted off this week and goes home mostly because the others felt that Bobby needed more time on the Ranch to learn to succeed.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Was the weigh-in a surprise to you?


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