Also, Michelle celebrates her 30th high school reunion

By Amanda Michelle Steiner
Updated March 10, 2015 10:00 PM
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Credit: TLC

The overarching theme of this week’s 19 Kids and Counting was health and wellness.

Michelle, 49, opened up about her struggle with disordered eating as a teen, and the whole Duggar clan got involved in getting fit. (Even Josie, 5, flexed her tiny muscles!)

Let’s Get Physical, Physical

Michelle was visited by her childhood best friend Cindy, whom she’s known since the first grade. The two went to the gym together, and Michelle opened up about her “[struggle] with self-worth” as a teen, “before I came into the Lord.”

“I ended up starting up a bad habit of making myself get sick after I would eat, especially if I had more food than I felt like I should eat,” she shared. “It was destructive for my health and my life.”

Jessa, 22, was also looking to get fit in preparation for her upcoming wedding to Ben Seewald, 19.

Naturally, the Duggars approach physical fitness a little differently than most – in order to keep to their modest dress code, Michelle’s workout outfit consisted of an oversized t-shirt with a calf-length skirt over a pair of leggings. Joy-Anna, 17, wore something similar for her workout led by Ben, and Jessa opted for a t-shirt and a knee-length skirt.

Wedding Daze

As ever, we continued to follow Jessa and Ben on their road to the altar. Their wedding invitations had arrived – all 800 of them – and they enlisted the kids to address them and send them out. Nothing like having several relatives at the ready to help prepare for a fast-approaching wedding!

Later, the soon-to-be-married couple took some of the kids to register for their wedding. Given that Jessa was living at home at the time – as was Ben, in the same house, but with 17 chaperones – they had a lot of work to do to stock their future home.

Josie had some pretty cute ideas about what to register for (“peanut butter and bread!”), and Jordyn, 6, was utterly thrilled to operate the scanner.

It’s worth noting that the couple was so low-maintenance that their wedding planner looked like she wanted to cry a little over the fact that they hadn’t even yet thought about getting a tux for Ben.

Also …

• At Michelle’s high school reunion, we learned that she was scrappy as a teen! She wanted to play with the boys and defended somebody when they were being bullied. Watching the Duggar matriarch put up her dukes to illustrate her point was something we never thought we’d see. She even had a pet tarantula when she was younger!

Jill, 23, cooked a Nepalese dish for husband Derick Dillard, 26, with the help of eldest sister Jana, 25. After all, the couple first met in Nepal, and they decided to adhere to the tradition of eating directly with your right hand – no utensils required. (Jana chose to abstain from that particular tradition.)

• If each of the Duggar children invited 800 people to their wedding, that would come to $7,500 in postage. Yikes.

• Jill was no longer suffering from morning sickness in her second trimester, but, as Michelle shared with cameras, you get more uncomfortable the farther along you are.

• The family celebrated Johanna’s ninth birthday with a trip to the stables, and Michelle shared that being “sweet 16 in the lineup” and the eldest of the youngest four girls makes her the take-charge leader of the pack.

19 Kids and Counting airs Tuesdays (9 p.m. ET) on TLC.

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