FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) - A bulletin board in Ashton Theiss' Fort Worth home is filled with small souvenirs, but they come with big memories of her time on "The Amazing Race."
"We were all friends and so happy, and then," Theiss said. Unfortunately, it ended sooner than she wanted.
"I will never complain about my experience," Theiss added.
For the first time ever, the participants are competing with complete strangers, taking the tension to a new level. "They are all giving it their all. Okay? And the day we don't do that is the day that we go home," Theiss said to her partner on camera during the race. "I want to see this all the way through."
Some viewers say Ashton was hard on her partner, but she says that's just her competitive spirit. "I am a very Type A person with a very strong personality and determination," Theiss said. "That definitely showed through on the show."
Theiss also said that the race is far more difficult than what you see on TV. She explained, "You are sleep deprived, food deprived, in a high-pressure environment, and then in all these different time zones. It's definitely taxing on your body."
While it's an incredible journey, there are not a lot of creature comforts. "Everything I had for 30 days was in this guy," Theiss said, holding up her backpack. All she packed for the race was two pairs of tennis shoes and five changes of clothes, because you can't check bags on your flights.
Her advice -- if you ever get on the show -- is to get in shape. "Do a lot of cardio. Run, run, run. I wish I knew how many miles I ran in the entire race," Theiss said.
She admitted that it's painful to be eliminated. "My heart was so broken. You never want it to be over," Theiss said.
But she doesn't regret it one bit, and would love to do it all over again. "So, everyone needs to vote me on to All-Stars."
for more features.