So I was on a mini mission to find celebrities who are not Skinny fat or sickly skinny and I came across this interview with Ciara. I think she is one of my new favorite celebrities...she is awesome :)
Take a look at the confident woman on these pages and you’d have a hard time believing there was ever a time when Ciara didn’t like the way she looked. “Growing up, I was insecure about a lot of things. I was like a chicken, with skinny legs,” says the 23-year-old, who towered over most of her classmates as a teenager. “I’m in a totally different place now.” Yeah, you could say that. Today, the R&B singer–known as much for her strong, sexy dance moves as her chart-busting albums–is a woman at home in her own skin.
That may be because she’s gotten into fighting shape prepping for the February release of Fantasy Ride, an eclectic album (“a roller coaster” is the way Ciara describes it) featuring everything from slow jams to up-tempo house. “I like to step outside the box and challenge myself,” she says with a smile.
That drive started years ago. The only child of military parents (her father served in the Army; her mother was in the Air Force), she lived in Germany and throughout the States before settling in Atlanta. She embraced exercising as a high school track star and cheerleader. “I was always the base [in pyramids and stunts],” she explains. “So there was a lot of lifting of other girls.”As Ciara describes her upcoming tour, it’s clear she’s still into heavy lifting. “We’re going to intensify the dancing this time around,” she says. “I want to give my fans something special.” Here, Ciara shares how she got her body into show-it-off shape: an energizing fitness routine combined with a refreshingly realistic and guilt-free attitude toward food. All of it is music to our ears.
Train–and eat–like you mean it. “When I was younger, I would play around. I would work out and then eat a burrito afterward. Now I take it seriously–no salt, low salt. It’s strict, but when I follow those rules, I see results.” Working with her trainer, Sean Moon, for an hour a day five to six times a week and being more mindful of what she eats has worked. “A lot of people don’t realize that when you’re trying to lose weight, or just trying to stay fit, 85 percent of it is what you eat, and 15 percent of it is how you work out,” she says. “And listening to that voice in your head that says, ‘I’m gonna get me a burger–I just went to the gym, so it will be OK,’ is a bad idea. You can ruin your whole day with a big cinnamon bun. I’m taking that into account now.”
Target your tummy. Like most of us, Ciara has her trouble spot. “I don’t mind [weight] going to my rear end, but sometimes it goes down to my stomach. I’m like, can you just go to my butt, please?” She stays sleek by doing lots of cardio and by “keeping my stomach squeezed in throughout the day.” Crunches are also key. “We do advanced ab work–probably 500 ab exercises total per session, though sometimes we’ll stop at 200.”
Make Madonna your workout buddy. Normally, Ciara works out to music. “I like up-tempo songs,” she says. “Madonna has a lot of those–her newer stuff, especially, has a cool vibe.” Ciara also gets a great workout rehearsing dance moves for her tour. “I want to get into different things like tap and ballet.” But, she says, you don’t have to be a pro to reap the fat-burning rewards of shaking your booty. “Dancing–however you do it, even if it’s in your living room–is a great workout.”
Get ESPN-zoned. When she’s not listening to Madonna at the gym, Ciara revs herself up by checking out the action on ESPN. “I have so much respect for athletes like LeBron James. I get motivation from them because I know how many hours they put into it. It takes a lot of hard work and drive.” Sometimes, though, you have to be your own role model. “There’s nothing better than seeing results,” she says. “That’s more motivating than anything.”
Max out on mini meals. Rather than sitting down to three squares a day, Ciara prefers five to eight smaller meals when she’s following a rigorous training schedule. A sample menu: One whole-grain pancake with egg whites and some fruit on the side for breakfast, followed by a midmorning fruit snack. Lunch might be steak with broccoli and a baked potato, followed by another snack. For an afternoon boost, she’ll nibble on half a sandwich of turkey with lettuce. Her favorite energy-boosting dinner: whole-wheat pasta with “a cool sauce.” And she never skimps on water. “Drinking tons of water is extremely important. When I’m training, I drink a gallon a day.”
But don’t you dare deprive yourself. An occasional visit to the Cheesecake Factory (Ciara’s favorite splurge spot) isn’t going to kill you. “Food is fun. And for those moments when you want to enjoy yourself, don’t beat yourself up. I have moments when I want to eat pizza or a hamburger–I’m not going to drive myself crazy.”
Remember that saying “Your body is a temple”? Well, it’s true, so show some respect. Recently Ciara pulled a hamstring while rehearsing for a video and paid a visit to her chiropractor. “We’re doing cool things to heal it, like stretching. I think stuff like that is important. When you treat your body well, it will treat you well. Treat it badly, and you’ll feel what happens.”