At 435 pounds, 27-year-old Nyla has had a lifelong struggle with her weight. Though she lives in Houston, she loves the food of Louisiana and orders ten pounds of crawfish at her favorite restaurant, when she receives the shock of her life. The waitress brings over a t-shirt emblazoned, "I ate 10 pounds of crawfish and all I got was a year with Chris Powell." Love it!
Nyla breaks down during her first workout. A lot of emotions come out regarding the abandonment feelings she has from a father who left her. Nyla comes back strong to finish the workout. Her apartment is transformed into an exercise haven. Nyla is not happy about the fact that Chris will be regulating her air conditioner. For her Phase 1 goal, Nyla is tasked with losing 100 pounds. If she does this, Chris is going to give her lessons with one of the Dancing with the Stars pros. Nyla wants to be sure that the guy is hot.
Chris wants Nyla to conquer her fear of stairs by walking up an escalator the opposite way. Nyla doesn’t believe Chris understands how difficult this is for someone like her. She gives up immediately and demands that Chris give her some space. There are some intense confrontations between trainer and client. Chris has never met anyone who has fought this process so much.
Chris believes Nyla wants him to walk out on her—just like her father did. That’s not going to happen. The next few weeks are better, but they were still way behind. Come the 90-day weigh-in, Nyla weighs 361 pounds. She missed her goal. It’s not where she wants to be, but it’s better than where she was.
Chris asks Nyla to set her own goal for Phase 2. She believes she can lose 70 pounds over the next 90 days. Chris needs her to realize how much her attitude affects her weight loss. Nyla blames her financial situation for the fact that she’s not buying/eating the right foods. At the 6-month weigh-in, the scale reads 341 pounds. This leads to another intense exchange between Nyla and Chris.
Nyla and Chris talk things out to finally get on the same page. Later, Chris lets Nyla know that he’s tracked down the father she’s never met. He hands her an envelope containing all the information she could ever want to know about him. Nyla doesn’t open the envelope right away, but does ask for it later.
Nyla reads a letter from an aunt on her father’s side of the family. Her father cleaned up his act but was unable to keep it together when his wife died. He committed suicide. Chris comforts Nyla as she breaks down in tears. 28 years of sorrow and devastation have all come out at once.
Nyla travels to Louisiana to meet her father’s side of the family. Her Aunt Helen is there as well as her Uncle Harry and half sister Rhonda. She learns that her dad was afraid that she would reject him if he ever approached her. The entire family visits his grave. Nyla just wishes she could have done this sooner. Still, she took a chance that shows true transformation.
Nyla continues her journey by working hard. At the 9-month weigh-in, she looks great. She’s down to 303 pounds. Chris rewards her with a dance lesson from Tony Dovoloni of Dancing with the Stars fame. They do the Cha Cha for Chris, who is very impressed. He gives her a 9. Nyla thinks the reason she didn’t get a 10 is because Chris was jealous that he didn’t get to dance with her.
Nyla hits a little setback when she strains her back. It takes weeks of recovery time. On Day 365, a cheering crowd awaits the new Nyla, who looks fantastic. At the end of a one year journey, Nyla weighs 278 pounds. She lost 157 pounds. Chris lets Nyla know that Walmart will be helping her continue to eat healthy with a $50,000 gift card. But there’s still the matter of Nyla conquering the escalator challenge. She comes through like a champ. Way to go, Nyla!