By Elaine Aradillas
November 16, 2009 12:00 PM

That high-cut red bathing suit Nicole Eggert used to wear on Baywatch, starting in 1992 when she was 19? She never worried about fitting into it. “I was skinny and it wasn’t an issue–it just was natural,” she says. Then, breaking out into a laugh, she adds: “The good old days!” If Eggert, now 37, is feeling nostalgic, it’s with good reason: Since 2007 the 5’2″ actress has gained about 20 lbs. (and has gone up three jeans sizes), after she quit exercising while coping with the death of her father. “The first year there’s a shock thing,” she says. “And then it sets in, and you miss them so much.” A single mother, Eggert would drop off her daughter Dilyn, 11, at school, “and then I would go back to bed,” she says. “I detached myself from everything.” But by September 2008 Eggert says she was tired of being “a shaking, crying mess.” She saw a therapist, forced herself out of bed–and is now part of the new cast of VH1’s Celebrity Fit Club, which returns in early 2010. “I miss my spirit,” she says. “I want to wake up and be happy.”

THEN 110 LBS.

NOW 130 LBS.

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