Tamzin Outwaite reveals how sub-zero ordeals have helped celebs form unbreakable bonds

Tamzin Outwaite reveals how sub-zero ordeals have helped celebs form unbreakable bonds

Tamzin Outhwaite was terrified when she was offered a place on Freeze the Fear with Wim Hof – but now says the sub-zero ordeals she and
fellow celebs went through forged an unbreakable bond.

She says: “I will go into sauna, I love a steam, I like a hot holiday.

“Everything was screaming, ‘Don’t go into the cold’.”

But after being persuaded and completing the show, she says of her fellow brave celebs: “Even though we only knew each other for three weeks, I feel like I know them, some of them, better than I know my oldest mates.”

Other stars on the BBC1 reality show include sports host Gabby Logan, soccer star Patrice Evra and Strictly pro dancer Dianne Buswell. Weatherman Owain Wyn Evans, singers Alfie Boe and Professor Green (Stephen Manderson) plus footballer-turned-DJ Chelcee Grimes complete the line-up.

The full roster of celebrities taking part in Freeze the Fear with Wim Hof
(
BBC/Hungry Bear Media/Pete Dadds)

Tamzin, 51, said the extreme nature of the show’s challenges meant they relied on each other for strength from day one.

She says: “We were all joking about the fact that when we get home people are not going to understand, because you can’t explain that kind of a thing.

“And that our nearest and dearest would be going, ‘Oh, my ice friends, my new best ice friends!’

“But when you go through an awful lot of trauma with people, there’s a bond there that’s quite unbreakable, I think.”

Tamzin Outwaite on Freeze the Fear with Wim Hof
(
BBC/Hungry Bear Media/Pete Dadds)

Tamzin Outhwaite is featuring on the new series Freeze the Fear
(
Tim Merry)

Tamzin freely admits she was at a low ebb prior to filming the show.

The mum of two says the experience has helped her to deal with the grief of losing her mother Anna to a heart attack in 2018, and also the ongoing battle with the menopause.

She says: “There is a sense, when you hit the menopause, like ‘Oh all right, it’s on, we’re going down.’

“Whether that’s mood or career or excitement in life, whatever.

“Then you have a new experience like Freeze the Fear and it’s like, ‘Oh good, it’s not over yet’.”

“I was losing a bit of confidence in myself and I think my confidence came back when I was there,” she says. “I came home with a sense of feeling like, ‘Yeah, I’m all right.”

The celebrities have been pushed to their limits
(
BBC/Hungry Bear Media/Pete Dadds)

In the course of the show so far, viewers have seen most of the stars open up about their own most painful experiences.

Patrice spoke freely about the shame he still feels over the sexual abuse inflicted by a teacher when he was 13.

Gabby told of her anguish at the death of her brother Daniel in 1992 when he was just 15 and Stephen opened up about his father’s suicide and his own ongoing battle with depression.

Tamzin says extreme athlete Hof’s breathing exercises were almost like taking a mind-altering drug.

She explains: “You are holding your breath, so something almost happens that feels like it’s hallucinogenic.

“I think it’s like where your soul and your brain seem to go to when you are breathing that deeply.”

Freeze the Fear with Wim Hof has seen celebrities take on epic adventures and freezing temperatures
(
BBC/Hungry Bear Media/Pete Dadds)

After the breathing exercises, a tearful Gabby was convinced she had felt the presence of Tamzin’s mother.

Tamzin and Gabby, 49, formed a particularly close bond, and now have plans to work together on a new project.

Tamzin, best known for her role as Mel Owen in EastEnders, took months to agree to take part in the show, which is made by her producer cousin Dan Baldwin and presented by his wife Holly Willoughby.

Her own kids Florence, 13, and nine-year-old Marnie were terrified that she could suffer a heart attack like the one that killed their grandmother when she was just 67.

Tamzin, who lives with long-term partner and “dream stepdad” Tom Child, says talking about it as a family helped to put their minds at rest.

She adds: “I think that’s a go-to fear –that if you’re jumping into ice-cold water, you’re going to have cardiac arrest or something.

“Lots of people think that. We did discuss it but then I had a medical and everything was fine.”

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The hardest task, she says, was sitting still in the barrel of ice.

Tamzin adds: “When you’re in ice-cold water and you’re swimming, that feels more natural because you’re moving a bit and keeping warm.

“But sitting still is so hard.”

It remains to be seen which of the group will go through with the final challenge of the series – dropping on a bungee rope from a 500-metre bridge.

Tamzin and some of the others said there was no chance of them taking part when Hof demonstrated it in the second episode.

The first challenge involved celebrities jumping into a frozen lake
(
BBC/Hungry Bear Media/Pete Dadds)

Tamzin says: “I didn’t think I had a fear of heights – until I got there and saw the heights involved.”

Once filming finished, all the group were determined to continue on the journey they had started.

Tamzin now finishes her morning shower with a 30-second cold blast.

She says: “The feeling you have afterwards is just astonishing. Your skin tingles.

“It’s supposed to be really good for depression, your heart, tons of things.”

Tamzin said there is no way she will lose touch with her Freeze the Fear fellow contestants
(
BBC/Hungry Bear Media/Pete Dadds)

Overall, she describes taking part in the show, filmed amid the beauty of the Italian Alps, as one of the best experiences of her life.

She says of her fellow contenders: “The camaraderie of all of us together was really sometimes quite magical.

“We just laughed and laughed.

“I can’t imagine that we’re going to never all hook up regularly.

“We’re all going to go to The Games to watch Chelcee compete and then we’re all going to Soccer Aid to watch her and Patrice play together.”

Freeze the Fear with Wim Hof is on BBC1, Tuesdays at 9pm.

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