Sunshine Hampton talks about going home This past week, The Biggest Loser: Couples contestants got encouragement from Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, and helpful advice from two past season winners - Helene Phillips (season seven) and Erik Chopin (season three). First, the five remaining players got some game-changing news from host Alison Sweeney: There would be no yellow line, just a red line. So friendships and alliances couldn't help those who were left - whoever fell below the red line would go home automatically, leaving this season's final four. The tension mounted, especially for one player who struggled to appreciate all they had accomplished so far.

Then trainer Bob Harper surprised the contestants with an introduction to Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo while they were out shopping. The NFL superstar encouraged the contestants and talked about the inspirational role models they had become before taking them all on a hike. Later, they also get surprise visits from two past season winners - Helene Phillips and Erik Chopin. While Helene has maintained a healthy weight since winning season seven, Erik has openly struggled with his weight and gained back much of what he lost. He talked very candidly about his challenges and his plan to get back on track, and Helene shared helpful advice about keeping the weight off once they leave the ranch.

Also this week, the contestants faced what could be their toughest challenge yet, a past-season favorite determined by an online viewer poll. They had to put all of their weight back on and race up and down 16 hills of sand while dropping their weekly weight loss incrementally as it was lost during the season. The winner got $10,000 or a 1 lb. advantage at the crucial weigh-in. Later, all five players got a chance to see just how far they'd really come by watching emotional videos of each of their weight-loss journeys at the ranch with their trainers. Then it was time for the weigh-in, where two contestants broke The Biggest Loser records. Finally, one more player was sent home, leaving the final four contestants, one of whom will win the grand prize of $250,000.

This week's loser was SunShine Hampton, who stopped by to chat about her last episode of the show. Here is what she had to say:

Can you talk a little bit about how it came about that you got to throw the pitch out and also did they tease you that you threw like a girl because you didn't quite make it across the plate?

SunShine Hampton: You know, I am a huge Twins fan so it has always been one of my dreams to go to the new Target Field. It's a brand new stadium and it was just, you know, the show really worked with me and were able to let me throw out the first pitch. And, you know, my brothers worked a lot with me. I have all brothers and they're like you're not going to throw it like a girl. You're not going to do it. You're going to make it there. So I practiced tons and I had it down. And get out there and I'm like oh man. I didn't quite make it all the way. But it was still fun. I, you know, I really am so happy that I got to throw out the first pitch because that was my dream just to be standing on that brand new Target Field on the mound. It was - it was awesome.

Now you were obviously very disappointed that you got below the red line last night. But you and your dad had had success at home. So didn't you sort of know that you were going to be okay and you were going to be able to do it and actually, you know, you could go after that home prize?

SunShine Hampton: Yeah, you know, of course it's, you know, a bummer I didn't make final four. But I really - that was - the whole week was a big week of reflections for me. You know, seeing that I can do it at home and I know I can go for the at home and already - I already have won the big prize. You can't put $100,000 on gaining my house back, you know. I would take my house over $100,000 or $250,000 any day. And I'm just - I was really able to reflect. And I went with peace. I was okay where I was at in the game and I knew I was going to be high.

Before you start on the ranch, you make videos to send to yourselves. Can you talk a little bit about that experience like what was just going through your head and can - did you ever imagine a time that you would get as far as you have?

SunShine Hampton: Oh no. You know, making those home videos in the way beginning, I was almost mad at myself for making the video because I'm like there's no way I'm going to get on the show and I'm embarrassing myself because someone has to film us taking the video. And I wasn't comfortable with anyone, you seeing me in a swimsuit or doing anything. So it's very hard to get going and get started on making those videos and actually realizing that, you know, I need to change. I need to do this. So making those videos it definitely is worth it now. But I look back and I'm so glad I did it. But I did not want to make any videos or show anybody how I looked or how I felt about my body and self at that time.

Okay. And just wanted to know, any changes in your love life? Are you dating anyone or any prospects out there?

SunShine Hampton: You know, I found a lot of close relationships and I'm not dating anyone now. You know, there's always - I just want to stay focused until the finale until afterwards. Everything's, you know, kind of just really, really intense. Really working out. Just focused on that finale and then afterwards I'm ready to start my life and ready to, you know, see where this all takes me.

In last night's episode, you know, Helen I think really talked about the day to day challenges of keeping the weight off once you do go back home and continue your kind of weight loss maintenance journey. At you at this - at the place yet where you're kind of, you know, experiencing some of the comments and insights that Helen was talking about? Some of the challenges that she alluded to yesterday.

SunShine Hampton: You know, continuing the weight loss here you get to know your body because I've never felt this good in my life before. I'm just so happy. And sometimes you look at yourself, I'll stand there an look and I'll be like oh my gosh, you know, I'm where I want to be at and it's hard to like keep going and stay motivated when you already so happy with how you're feeling. But I know I have to do really well at the finale. So I just keep going.

Sure. That's great. If there's one thing, you know, that you would - you miss most about being on the ranch, what is it?

SunShine Hampton: The thing I miss most about being on the ranch is all my friends and family that were there. So everyone - it's not just friends. It's all my family, my The Biggest Loser family. Because when you're at the gym, you're surrounded by everyone else going through the same issues and the same problems, you feel comfortable and you have that good (unintelligible). So, you know, you come back home to the gym and you see people, you know, just running like a marathon and this and that, you kind of get discouraged. But, you know, that was more in the beginning. Like when I wasn't home for the first month. Now it's not so bad. But I miss - I definitely miss all my (unintelligible). All - everyone that's out there.

When we spoke to your dad, he talked about how proud he was and really just gushed over you and how you were like the sunshine of his life. How was it going through the experience with your dad and how has he been helpful to you since returning home?

SunShine Hampton: You know, going through this with my dad I couldn't have picked a better partner. I couldn't imagine myself being there with anyone else. To have my dad's support was unbelievably amazing there. And, you know, going through the clip and we've been big our whole lives and I've always, you know, been under his wing. He's always supported me in everything that I've done. So to go to the ranch with my dad, I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. I knew I needed him and it was good to be there with him for so long because I realize that although it will happen there, I could do it on my own and then grew into a woman. And I figured out how I can do it on my own and still have him there. And we can - and we can do this parallel instead of me being underneath him. So I'm really, really thankful that I was there with my dad.

Oh, very cool. And so bring us up to date on your own weight loss.

SunShine Hampton: Well a lady never tells her weight. No I've been doing really well. I've been losing weight. I knew I was on the ranch just as long as everyone else was so I didn't have as much time when I got home as everyone else. So, I'm still losing weight. I'm doing well and I'm looking forward to the finale to see how much more I lost.

{bold|Going home this time it seemed like you had so much more confidence in yourself. And so I was just curious, how important was it for you to have some time apart from your dad to work on your weight loss, you know, just with yourself?

SunShine Hampton: It was very important. You know, I never want to say I'm glad that I went home but I think it was good for me to be on the ranch by myself and to really - you know, that was a test to see if I can do it without him. You know, I'm 24 years old. I (unintelligible) and I did. And it was fine. I was absolutely fine and I only grew stronger and more confident and more mature. And, you know, once I left I knew I was okay.

Yeah. And then kind of going along with that, how important and fun was makeover week for you?

SunShine Hampton: Makeover week was definitely a turning point for me. I really - that was the first week my dad was gone. And I felt like a new person. I really saw the Sunshine that I'd been waiting to see. That I felt I'd - that no one else knew was there. No, it just really radiated through when I did my makeover. And it was very important for me to get that boost of confidence and to have everyone tell me how wonderful I was. And I believed it.

Last night during the episode you guys all sat down and watched videos of your progress. And there was that one clip in your - the very first video you made where you talked about never having been on a date. And then when that played they showed your face and you had this big grimace on. And I don't know if that was just editing. But did you kind of kick yourself because they played that clip over and over? Did you kind of kick yourself for sharing that? Were you like oh man, why did I say that?

SunShine Hampton: Yes. I definitely did. You know, and I've never been on a date and I never had a boyfriend. But that they definitely blasted that. And, you know, I'm like oh man, I'm 24. I don't want everyone to know that, you know. At the time I didn't think it was a big deal when I said that. But yeah, it's definitely - well it's true. I've never been on a date or had a boyfriend. And I definitely haven't been - you know, I've been reminded of that since that clip has been aired. I've definitely heard that and I get a lot of, you know, Facebook comments, "oh I'll date you, I'll be your boyfriend, I'll do this and I'll do that." So I mean it's weird to get that kind of attention now. I'm not used to it. But yeah, I'm kind of kicking myself in the butt for saying that.

And then I noticed you worked at a restaurant and I'm wondering if you went back to your old job or if you plan to go back to the same job. And how do you think your habits, your day to day work habits will change now that you've been on the Biggest Loser and learned all that about eating and nutrition?

SunShine Hampton: Yes. I worked at an Applebee's for eight years and I don't plan on going back.

Okay.

SunShine Hampton: I've accomplished a lot more - not that it's - I know I could handle it working in a restaurant again and be fine with my diet and everything. I could actually teach a lot of people and I feel like I'd be better at my job. But it's not something I wanted to continue. That was the old me. That was my old life. And I want to move forward and do bigger things with my life now. I'm really excited. I want to start school. Go to nursing school. And start my career, start my life that I've always wanted. And now that I feel good about myself and have all this confidence and energy, I'm willing to take on any risk and any challenge.

Outside of what you learned on the show just about losing weight, what did you learn the most about yourself?

SunShine Hampton: Oh, about myself. That's a very good- I - you know, going onto the show originally I'm like oh, I have no problems. Nothing's wrong with me. I'm going to go on the show and I'm going to lose weight. But the biggest realization that I had is definitely knowing that there's more to the show than losing weight. I had to figure out why and how I gained all this weight. And it meant really quick to me that I wanted to be just like my dad. My dad has always been my support and my rock. And I definitely figured out, you know, I need to let go and I need to do this on my own. And once I released all that and fear, I was able to lose weight and I now I can keep it off now. Another thing is the nutrition. A lot of the food, you know, it's good to know what your body needs and what your body craves. And when you feed it empty calories, you're not doing it any good. And I've just learned a lot about nutrition. And, you know, about being able to do this on my own. Both of those things.

Okay. Great. Well how has the fan reaction been for you? Have you been out somewhere and somebody yells Sunshine at you from across the street?

SunShine Hampton: Yes. It's been very weird. My dad took it a lot better than I do. I'm still, you know, someone yells, SunShine, I'm just checking look back and see oh one of my friends or was it and I'm like, "Oh my gosh. Do I know that person? How do I know them? How do I know them?" And like, "I know you don't know me but I'm a big fan." I'm like oh, okay. Thank goodness I don't know - because I didn't recognize them. But it is really weird to get recognized because I still feel like, you know, I'm SunShine Hampton from Richfield, Minnesota, just your hometown girl. And, you know, when people recognize me and tell me how inspiring I am, it really - it touches me in a way that it makes me feel so good because I am getting my word out there and helping other people. And that's all I've ever wanted. That's all I've ever, you know, done my whole life is help people and always give. So it's awesome to know that I'm still inspiring and helping other people.

Now you mentioned the never dating issue.

SunShine Hampton: Yeah.

Daris mentioned the same thing. Did you guys talk about that stuff?

SunShine Hampton: Together or as a...

Yeah. Yeah.

SunShine Hampton: Well, you know, that was brought up. We were really close friends. We were, you know, got along well. We had pretty much the same background and I think that while we were there we definitely, you know, could relate to each other. So we worked out a lot together and everything. Nothing ever happened between us though. So I don't know, when he went back home, he did start seeing a girl. And I believe now he is dating someone, so happy for him.

You had mentioned you wanted to go to nursing school. Was that something that you had been thinking of before the show or has the Biggest Loser experience kind of steered you toward health and fitness and healthy living?

SunShine Hampton: A little bit of both. I've actually always wanted to go into nursing school ever since I was, you know, in high school. I'm like oh, I want to be, you know, become a nurse. I want to work in a hospital. And then once I started on The Biggest Loser and really, you know, got a few lessons in nutrition and health and wellness, I'm like wow, I know for a fact that's the career I'm supposed - that's what I'm supposed to be doing in life because it just - everything lined up. Everything feels right. And The Biggest Loser definitely gives you the extra push to want to go to school. Now before I knew I had to go - when I was going to do it but not it's like I'm ready to start. I want to start going to school now and I want to go for nursing, so.

Yeah. That's great. Do you work out with your dad?

SunShine Hampton: We do. We work out - we work out together, not the exact same work out. We'll go to the gym together but we - two different intensity levels. So, you know, he'll do swimming and boxing. I'll do a little boxing but I, you know, get a lot of running in too. And he can't do so much running because of his knees. But - and we've also figured out if we're - whenever we're together, people recognize us 20 times more so than when separated. So, you know, if we're feeling like we don't want to be bothered, we'll go to the gym at different times. Once we're at the gym together and, you know, we're warming up together or something, it's non-stop people coming up to us. So, you know, we work out together and we work out separate. We do both.

I know that you are kind of coming to the realization that - and you're going to actually go to nursing school now. And that's fantastic. What's something else that's a smaller level that you are able to do now that you are finally feeling healthy that you were never able to do before?

SunShine Hampton: I'm able to go with my friends. My friends are all, you know, most of all my friends are fit. I can run around the track with them and not get tired. I'm not scared to be like oh, you know, I'd make excuses. They're like do you want to go hiking or do you want to do this. I'd always make up an excuse because I didn't know if I could keep up. And now I know I can beat them. So, you know, other things like that and like little exercise (unintelligible). I have more confidence in anything I do. I walk down the street with my head held high (unintelligible). And I know - this might sound silly but I know people are thinking oh wow, she looks good or oh wow, that girl's really pretty. And I believe it now. Like I know people think that because people have said it. So it's great to have that kind of outlook on life now.

That's great. Did you - have you changed your wardrobe around at all?

SunShine Hampton: Yes I have. I actually enjoy shopping now. I've always loved to shop but it was always for other people; for my brothers or for, you know, birthdays and stuff. But now I can be - definitely see myself getting into trouble because I like to shop. And it's hard because I'm still dropping sizes. I don't know where I want to stay or where my - where I'm going to maintain. So I keep telling myself, okay, you can't keep buying clothes. You can't keep buying clothes until you're at where you want to be, so. Definitely like to shop though.

Did your dad come to that realization too that he needed to look out for himself a little bit more than he needed to look out for you - than he needed to look out for you because you could look out for yourself? And talk about having the new car.

SunShine Hampton: Yes. That's a very, very good question because I was scared to tell my dad what we had talked about. I didn't want him to think that I was backing away from him, telling him that I'm going to be okay. I didn't want him to feel that he's failed me or I'm trying to leave him. But, you know, the biggest - I was so scared to tell my dad. And once I did, I got everything out on the table and he had told me - he's like, "I was holding on to you because I knew you weren't ready until you came to me and told me that now I can let you go." And for my dad to say that, it just - I'm getting chills right now just reliving the moment. Because I never - I always thought that I'd break his heart and he'd be like, "Oh, why are you leaving me? Why do you want to separate from me?" He's like, "I knew it all along Sunshine. I was just waiting for you to realize it for yourself." I mean that's just another great thing about my dad. Like my dad knows everything. He knows so much. He's the greatest dad and he's always looked out for me and he knows like he knows everything. He understands and he gets it. So I was very happy to have that moment with my dad. And then he started looking out for himself and focusing on his journey, which he did really well. And then for the car, it's fantastic. I got to pick out my own color and I couldn't believe - you know, I almost knocked my dad over when he won the car. I ran back and gave him a big hug and jumped on him and I'm like - when I watched - when I saw it, I'm like, "Oh, man. Dad I almost knocked you over. I'm sorry." He's like, "I know. You hit me like a lineman like you're a football player." So I was really, you know, excited and I couldn't believe my dad gave me the car. So then for Mother's Day I gave my mom my old car.

I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about Michael and he's leaving the ranch. And just wanted to see if you think what his chances are for winning.

SunShine Hampton: You know, he is a very determined guy. I think that of anyone, he is - you know, he was the biggest contestant. So he has good chances of doing really well at home. He has the weight to lose. It's just is he going to do it. Like I don't know. I mean he has the most weight to lose so I mean his chances are the best. But at the same time I don't know - you know, he was still having a hard time. In the last few weeks he didn't come to the realization, you know, he couldn't really click and connect. And he was still, you know, starting weights - or he was leaving the ranch as some people starting weights. So I know he was bummed out about that. And I just - I haven't talked to him but I hope he's doing well. I know he has had a few setbacks. I know his grandma just passed away and I just - I wish the best for him because he is someone that did need it and I hope he's doing well.

How much of a turning point was that weight carrying challenge?

SunShine Hampton: Oh man. Like I think I said a little bit about it before earlier. But this week or on the ranch that week was for me a huge reflection. You know, I got a focus on my whole journey and, you know, my dad being gone, like just really look back from where I started, the challenge was a very emotional challenge. I get chills thinking about it again. You know, to reflect on your whole journey and what I have done in the four months that I was on the ranch, four or five months that I was on the ranch, was just unbelievable. And it felt so good to take out those pounds and just slam them down here like that part of my life is done for. That chapter is closed. And join the last one over the edge, it's just you take a deep breath and you can't beat - I couldn't have been more proud of myself. And, you know, sometimes I feel guilty for being proud, for feeling so good and not, you know, carrying about other people. But it's what we had to do. I had to put myself first. And that's something I've never done my entire life. So I put myself first and I was able to get all this weight off. And I feel great.

How does that differ from Michael's journey? Like was it a turning point for him too do you think?

SunShine Hampton: I think it was a turning point. I'm hopping it was because, you know, being up there I gave him a great big hug afterwards and he was like, "Oh my gosh. I can't believe this. It's crazy." And I'm like, "I know. It is crazy." But I think it was a turning point for him too. For everyone I hope it was a turning point. And, you know, he still has a long ways to go. But he's doing really well.

What did you take away from the visit by Helen and Eric?

SunShine Hampton: It was cool to see different perspectives of people who - one who has gained the weight and one who has been able to keep it off. And, you know, I definitely - one of the things I'm going to hold on to is what Erik Chopin said. He said, "You don't want to do this twice." And I'm like, "Oh, no. I don't want to do this twice." So - and for Helene Phillips, she has been able to keep it off and maintain a healthy lifestyle and she gave me tips on how to do it because I'm, you know, from up North. I'm in Minnesota so, you know, in the wintertime how can I be outside and do my workouts outside. So I got a couple good things from both of them.

The next episode of The Biggest Loser: Couples airs Tuesday, May 18 (8-10 p.m. ET) on NBC.