S1 E05 Episode 5: LaRhonda

06/26/11 | TV-PG | CC

Extreme Makeover Weight Loss Edition: LaRhonda

LaRhonda is a 24-year-old who has an addiction to eating. Overweight by 300 pounds, she struggles just to put on her pants in the morning. LaRhonda lost her mother to diabetes. She worries that she may be next. She wants to lose the weight but is lacking motivation. Can Chris Powell give her the extra push she needs?

Chris surprises LaRhonda at the high school where she teaches flag practice. Within 24 hours, the dynamic duo head off to boot camp. Weighing in at shocking 433 pounds, LaRhonda puts on a smile to cover up her pain. The hurt, however, becomes too much to hide during her first workout. LaRhonda admits she stopped caring about herself when she was molested 16 years ago.

After peeling back the layers of protection that have been building up over the years, LaRhonda can finally breathe again…sort of. Chris pushes her to the limit. After falling down, cursing and crying, LaRhonda powers through the most difficult workout of her life.

When LaRhonda returns home, she finds Chris' team has been hard at work transforming her house into a safe environment where she can lose weight. Chris sets LaRhonda's first goal: lose 100 pounds in three months. If she can do it, she's promised a brand new car. What an awesome incentive!

LaRhonda's working hard, eating right and we're all crossing our fingers for her. At the 90-day weigh-in, Chris takes a look at her new number and says that he's "really sorry." Yeah, sorry he's so good at his job! LaRhonda has lost exactly 100 pounds. She's made her first goal, but is that where the victory ends?

Chris moves out of the house and leaves it up to LaRhonda to lose 60 pounds in another 90 days. Surveillance cameras catch her eating chips, watching TV and slacking off in her workouts. Despite her bad habits, she looks amazing when Chris comes back into town at the end of Phase Two. We're all holding our breath at the weigh-in. The scale reads 273. Exactly 60 pounds. She's two-for-two!

LaRhonda's nine-month weigh-in is just around the corner. She needs to be 250 pounds or less to be a candidate for skin removal surgery. When she walks into the room on Day 270, Chris is blown away. LaRhonda's lost the gut but kept her butt! Her final weigh-in at the end of Phase Three is 237 pounds. She's unstoppable!

365 days have passed since LaRhonda started her journey. With family and friends cheering her arrival, all eyes are on the entrance. When she finally comes down the aisle, the crowd goes wild. At the final weigh-in, she's a mere 231 lbs. That's 202 pounds lighter than she was a year ago. You look amazing, LaRhonda! Thanks for reminding us that with passion and dedication anything is possible!

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