Apple TV+’s ‘Physical’ follows Sheila Rubin on her journey to become one of the most successful and well-known personalities in the field of exercise and aerobics. It started with her being stuck in an unsatisfying marriage while battling her inner demons that often got the best of her. By the beginning of the third season, Sheila has found a haven in exercise and training and is building an empire for herself, despite the cut-throat competition she faces from others.
Sheila received help when she went to a rehab facility for her eating disorder. Despite her doubts about the place and the approach, she ended up finding her own rhythm and is now using it to keep herself from falling off the wagon, no matter how bad things might get. It’s still a long journey ahead of her, and with things getting more complicated with time, it never gets any easier. Here’s a look at the events of the first and second episodes of Season 3 and what the future has in store for Sheila. SPOILERS AHEAD
Physical Season 3 Episode 1,2 Recap
In the finale of Season 2, Sheila was working on gym equipment that could be sold to the customers to help them exercise. However, Kelly Kilmartin, a former TV actress, beat her to the punch and brought the same equipment to the market first. This shook Sheila’s confidence, but even though she convinced herself she could get out of this situation and do better, it did nothing to persuade her investors, especially Ernie, who advised Danny to take a more active role in the company.
Sheila knows how important it is to stay ahead of the competition if not entirely kill it, so she resorts to other ways to get the job done. She had contacted John Breem, her ex-lover, to get dirt on Kelly, which Sheila hopes to use to her advantage at some point. She also asked John to get anything on Danny, just for insurance, in case Danny ever steps out of line again. He already did this when he asked for his share in the company during their divorce, which Ernie told him he was entitled to according to California’s state laws.
While Sheila is doing all this behind the scenes, Ernie is more concerned about his money and the fact that he has only been making prototypes, and there is nothing to roll out in the market and make actual profit from. His anger extends to his wife, whom he reminds that he is the investor in Sheila’s company and it’s all happening because of him.
Sheila knows that she cannot stay stuck in one place forever. Kelly’s only advantage over Sheila is that she is more recognizable because she is an actress. When Greta points that out, Sheila decides to become a TV personality herself. She decides to get herself on the television, where she once again seeks John’s help. While it would work wonders for her, especially after she lands a weekly spot on the channel, Danny is not too happy about it, including the fact that his wife is still in touch with the man Danny considers his archenemy.
Physical Season 3 Episode 2 Ending
Sheila does everything she puts her mind to and soon realizes that there is only one person standing in her way. Her inner voice has been vicious to her since the beginning. This voice chipped at her confidence and always put her down. It fostered her eating disorder and pulled her away from the things that put her on the right path. In rehab, Sheila learns to suppress this voice and focus on the good stuff. Now the voice has gone, and Sheila daily says words of affirmation to herself to remind her how far she has come.
Sheila had smooth sailing for a while, and she didn’t have to worry about the voice. However, when the pressure starts to mount, especially with Kelly Kilmartin’s arrival, the voice returns; this time, it has a face. It starts with a very small thing. Sheila notices a blond woman sneaking into her office or following her. Eventually, she confronts the woman, who turns out to be Kelly Kilmartin. At first, it looks like Kelly wants to have a look at the competition, just like Sheila used to do. But then, Sheila realizes that this is her inner voice, taking the form of the one thing that seems undefeatable.
Kelly’s voice whispers in Sheila’s ears whenever she comes up with something to beat the competition. It puts her down, digs up her insecurities, and laughs at her words of affirmation. The voice tells Sheila all the bad things she doesn’t want to hear and gets stronger the more she tries to ignore it. During one of these times, when Sheila is trying to quiet her voice, Greta notices her and worries that something might be wrong with her friend.
Despite the voice, Sheila gets herself on television through John’s connection and receives a weekly segment named Wake Up San Diego with Sheila. She is still entirely focused on her business, and when a new rival starts to surface, Sheila attends her class to find out what she is up against. The voice, however, doesn’t leave her alone. It follows her everywhere, making her remember the childhood trauma she has never talked about with anyone. Danny knew about it, but Sheila never really dealt with the incident as she should have.
When the voice brings those memories back, Sheila finds herself on the verge of giving up again. She has the urge to drive to the burger joint and go through the whole process again, but this time, she is much more in control. She goes home, makes spaghetti and meat sauce for her daughter, and then talks about her trauma at the support group. She hopes it will help her, and while the group does encourage her and lifts her spirit, there’s the voice again, pulling her down just as she’s trying to reach for something greater.
Read More: Is Physical Based on a True Story?