The Oscars are on Sunday, where Anne Hathaway is a favorite to win best supporting actress for her work in Les Misérables. To play the part of dying prostitute Fantine, Anne went on a starvation diet, losing a total of 25 pounds. Anne certainly isn't the first — and won't be the last — actress to lose weight for a movie. Keep reading to see which Hollywood starlets have taken extreme measures to slim down for a movie role.
Whether she's wearing lacy leather at the Super Bowl or a formfitting jumpsuit at the Grammys, Beyoncé knows how to wow. Since having daughter Blue Ivy over a year ago, the singer has been hard at work on looking and feeling her best. In fact, when she debuted her postbaby body at a concert just a few months after Blue's birth last year, she even acknowledged how hard she's been sticking to her strict diet and exercise regime. "I had to lose 60 pounds. They had me on a treadmill. I ate lettuce!" she told the crowd. Of course, it's a lot more than that. Here's how Beyoncé's philosophy has evolved throughout the years to help her stay healthy and fit.
- She's realistic: "I can't eat what I want, and I can't not go to the gym," Beyoncé told Self. She also has the right outlook; she knows that there isn't a quick fix when it comes to a healthy lifestyle. "The truth is, it's a lot of sacrifice. It's more about your mental strength than physical strength. You have to push yourself. It doesn't matter what trainer you have. And it doesn't matter what program you're on. You have to be healthy and make the right choices," she said.
- She saves time: Beyoncé is a fan of celebrity trainer Marco Borges, who trains her using his signature Power Moves philosophy. This system helps Beyoncé save time since it relies on exercises that work several muscle groups at once. She also saves time by interval training, alternating between sprinting and running while on the treadmill, to burn more calories in a shorter amount of time.
- She seizes exercise opportunity: She may be busy, but when Beyoncé has a few minutes, she knows that she can fit in a few extra calorie-burning moves, like squats, lunges, and planks, no matter where she is. Get Beyoncé's five-minute do-anywhere workout here.
- She motivates herself: Whether it's a picture of an Oscar by her treadmill or a dress she wants to fit into, Beyoncé always has a way to motivate herself to work out. And it's no surprise that the singer uses music as one of her main workout motivations. "I'll put on a song that I really like and do [biceps curls with] five-pound weights [for] the whole song and just try to burn out," she told Self. If music is an important component of your workout routine as well, try this hour-long workout set to Beyoncé's latest album.
- She indulgences smart: Beyoncé may have been one of the Master Cleanse's most famous devotees, but she has since learned from her mistakes. "There are healthier ways to lose weight — I wouldn't recommend it," she told Elle about the deprivation cleanse she went on when dropping weight for her role in Dreamgirls. Instead, Beyoncé eats breakfast, salads for lunch, and a "light dinner" and allows herself a cheat day on Sundays.
"My whole journey has been about self-acceptance. There's no quick or magical way to lose weight. You just have to do it the natural way — diet and exercise and stick to it — and be able to do it at your own pace. Everyone has their own thing."
— Jordin Sparks, a former American Idol winner turned singer, songwriter, and actress, talks about her recent weight loss in her September cover interview with
"It's taken me every day of 10 months to lose the weight. I did it slowly and I did it moderately. It was important for me to lose it. I was a fit and active person before I had my son, but if there's one thing I could do for a new mom, it'd be to alleviate her of any guilt or any stress over the idea of having her body look a certain way."
— Jenna Fischer from The Office on the slow and steady road to losing her baby weight. She tells People that the process didn't come easy, and she had no personal chef, trainer, or nanny to help get her back to her prebaby body. Jenna focused on eating a healthy diet and exercising during her son Weston's naps.
Kim is all about maintaining her slim figure complete with those signature curves. Earlier this year, she revealed the secret to keeping her size-2 body, telling Us Weekly, "Changing my eating habits makes a big difference," which includes eating a more organic-based diet, free of refined sugars. Kim isn't the only celeb linking a slimmer bod to ditching gluten. Miley Cyrus explained that her recent weight loss was due to going gluten-free because of "a gluten and lactose allergy."
While many have had success losing weight by eliminating gluten from their diets, it's important to note that a gluten-free diet isn't the magic ticket to a thinner you. There are many high-calorie foods that are gluten-free (and foods like pizza, bagels, pasta, french fries, and cookies all have gluten-free versions). Not keeping an eye on portion sizes of these kinds of foods can actually cause weight gain. It's hard not to ignore the buzz though, especially if you're having trouble losing weight with the traditional route of exercise and a healthy diet. I'm wondering . . .
Hilary Duff gave birth to Luca Cruz less than two weeks ago, but is already exercising to get her prepregnancy body back. She hit the gym Saturday and tweeted, "20 minutes on the elliptical seems like an eternity!!! What the hell…"
Though many obstetricians recommend holding off on exercise until six weeks postpartum (longer for a C-section), every woman is different. Here are some workout tips for brand-new moms.
- Check with your doctor before exercising: How ready you are depends on how well you're healing. Most doctors recommend avoiding exercise until the bleeding stops, but may give the green light for low-intensity workouts, such as short walks or stretching.
- Start off slow: Don't expect your body to run 30 minutes straight like it did before you were pregnant. Aside from the stress of the actual birth, lack of sleep and low energy levels associated with nursing offer new moms little get-up-and-go. Start with low-impact exercise like walking, yoga, or swimming. A 10-minute walk around the block every day for a week (or longer) will feel like plenty. Gradually increase the intensity and length of your workouts as your strength and stamina increases.
- Invest in some baby gear: If you find it emotionally difficult to leave your baby, exercise with them. There are hundreds of baby carriers out there to enable you to walk with your baby. I'm a huge fan of the Moby Wrap, since it feels the most supportive on a new mom's often-sore back. If you're not into wearing your baby, or a C-section won't allow for it while you're healing, buy a jogging stroller (walk at first and run when you're doctor gives the OK). Postnatal fitness classes are another great option, not only for exercise, but as a way to connect with other new moms.
Keep reading for more workout tips for brand-new moms.
Amber Riley's character on Glee, the bold and confident Mercedes, isn't all that different from Amber herself. On and off camera, Amber didn't see her larger frame as a setback because she believes, "it's truly what's on the inside that counts." She recently told People, "I've always been comfortable with my size. I just decided it was time to get healthy."
After stomach pains brought 26-year-old Amber to the doctor, she said, "I decided I was going to make a change and eat healthier." She ditched fast food, including burgers, because she says they "were attacking my stomach." Within seven months of eating healthier and exercising regularly, the singer and actress is proud of her weight-loss milestone — "I dropped two dress sizes!"
Weight loss is definitely an added perk to switching to a healthy diet and Amber beams, "I'm a lot more comfortable in dresses, especially gowns." The actress has always been a role model for body confidence, but it sounds like this Glee star is feeling even more confident in her new, slimmer frame.
With the birth of the Atkins diet, carbs immediately got a bad reputation. It seems like everyone I know has gone on a carb-free diet at least once in their lives to lose weight, and even Naomi Campbell is no stranger to forgoing carbs. In the March issue of Harper's Bazaar, the 41-year-old model admits that she's blessed with a high metabolism, but she also exercises and watches her diet. Naomi works hard to maintain her famous model figure and says, "For me, carbs are a treat now."
I can see ditching refined carbs — foods made with white flour, like bagels, cookies, cakes, and pasta — since they have very little nutritional value. But whole grain bread and cereals, whole wheat pasta, and whole grains like quinoa and barley are super nutritious. These complex carbs contain protein to sustain energy levels and filling fiber to curb hunger, both of which can help you lose weight. However, there is definitely some validity to cutting carbs and losing weight. A recent study showed that cutting carbs twice a week was more effective than eating a low-calorie diet, so I can see why some women may choose to limit their carb intake in the name of weight loss. How do you feel about carbs?
Source: Karim Sadli for Harper’s Bazaar
Just two weeks after giving birth to daughter Haven last August, Jessica Alba tweeted: "I did my first day of wrkout [sic] since I had the baby, just cardio for 40 min. — it's a start." No wonder she had no problems slimming down to her amazing postbaby body. As a fellow momma, I'm not the only one in awe. A pregnant Jessica Simpson is totally inspired and tweeted: "New goal: look like @jessicaalba after baby. Job well done lady!"
Jessica Alba was flattered and responded with a tweet, "OMG! Ur so sweet! Thx hon!" Aside from aspiring to look as fit and healthy as someone else, there are many ways we stay motivated when it comes to dropping pounds. What keeps you on task?
Once Oct. 31 rolls around and not until the last day of the year, Hilary Swank isn't one to turn away scale-tipping holiday foods. Her secret to staying slim during the holiday season is no secret at all, because she tells Us Weekly:
"Eat away! Starting on Halloween, all the way through New Year's, I'm eating. That's why elastic waistbands are a must. So that you can eat a lot and let it stretch a little bit. You've got to have the elastic, and I think sparkles are always good for the holidays."
With all the high-calorie goodies and festive frothy drinks, it's hard to resist temptation, so I give in a little, too. When it comes to all the holiday fare, do you take it all in (heck, it's only one time of the year, right?) or do you strictly stay on track with healthy eating?