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Our Bodies, Ourselves



ROUTINE: “I always stay at hotels with health clubs. I’m one of these people that rise at 5:30, and I do at least 30 to 45 minutes on the treadmill. I do push-ups, sit-ups, and weights. People used to love to travel with me, but now I think they try to avoid it. When I get up, I wake everybody up. If you don’t want to work out, wake up and watch me work out! I work. I know people say you can work out four or five times a week, but psychologically it just bothers me. I've got to work out seven.”
GOALS: “I’m determined to keep the weight I lost in jail off. I was probably 310 at my peak. I went into jail at 238 and came out at 209. Now I’m 213.”
MOTIVATION: “The cartoons that said I was overweight never bothered me. But then my youngest daughter said, ‘Dad, you’re too fat.’ That hurt.”
SECRETS: “When I was about 14 or 15, I hung around Muhammad Ali, and he used to do his training with Albolene cream. He put it on to make him sweat. I use Albolene every morning. I put it all over my body to force the sweat.”
VICES: “Croissants in the morning. I used to love to eat four or five.”


Actor, Hairspray
ROUTINE: “I go to the theater every night at six, strap on a pair of tits, ass, and hips—a fat suit that’s all silicone, weighs about 40 pounds—then I put on high heels and I tap-dance. Honey, if that don’t make your legs strong, nothing will.”
LIKES: “My legs—they’re pretty fabulous.”
DIET: “Doing Hairspray, if I dieted, I’d be out of a job. I’ve been fat since I was a kid.”
BODY IMAGE: “This play has really fucked with me. Shaved everything! I’m a nudist at heart, but my whole self-image has gone to a bizarre place. I play a woman, but I don’t have it that hard. I was talking to Janeane Garofalo, and she said, ‘You know, for women, body image is the No. 1 thought in life from birth to death.’ And I’m thinking, As much research as I’ve done to play this woman, I still feel like I’m a man. Body image is important, but it isn’t the most important thing on my mind at every moment.”


Fashion photographer
ROUTINE: “I just had knee-replacement surgery. I shredded the cartilage in my knee. I turned and my foot stayed like a suction cup planted to the floor. I belong to two gyms, Chelsea Piers and Equinox, where I train four times a week with Casey Duke from Equinox. I can’t do much cardio yet, but I do a lot of upper body with free weights and machines and ab work.”
DIET: “I have a chef who comes once a week and cooks all organic for me. I had to ban my mom from the house. You know, Italian family—nonstop pasta. I would tell her not to bring over any more penne, and she’d bring over lasagne.”
LIKES: “I was blessed with great arms. I hate to brag, but my triceps are as big as other people’s biceps.”


A.k.a. Mr. Big
ROUTINE: “One of my favorite things to do on a cold, snowy day is bundle up and take a run in Central Park. I just won’t lift weights by myself. I’ll stare at them for a half-hour before I touch them, so I hooked up with Antonio Sini at Crunch years ago. We meet two to three times a week. I belong to the Lonestar Boat Club, one of the oldest private clubs in New York. Jerry Orbach got me into that. It’s mostly guys who play double-deck pinochle all day and smoke cigars, but there’s a coterie of young guys like me, about ten of us, and we play basketball.”
DIET: “I don’t eat any carbs past five; if you’re really dieting, you stop eating them altogether. You have breakfast, stay away from bread and pasta and drinking. But New York’s hard; when people gather, they gather over a drink. I try to just be moderate, and I don’t drink beer anymore.”
MOTIVATION: “Last February, I got a role for this movie, Julius Caesar, where I played Pompey the Great. It was tricky because these guys were warriors, but they weren’t cut the way twenty-first-century bodybuilders are. We kind of worked out something where I got bigger, but I was still someone in my forties. I still had my belly.”

SUE DEVITT (won’t divulge age)

Makeup artist to Kim Cattrall, Lara Flynn Boyle, J.Lo
ROUTINE: “Pilates at Sal Anthony’s Movement Salon on Third Avenue.”
DIET: “Raw food, which I discovered a year ago from one of my actor clients in California. I lost seven pounds. I know how effective and healthy it is. I get meals almost daily from Quintessence, the raw restaurant in the East Village.”
VICES: “Raw-coconut-cream pie.”
ADVICE: “Drink lots of water. I was working with Meg Ryan yesterday. I went in to set up my stuff, and there was a massive bottle of Vittel. Obviously she’d been chugging. When I did her makeup, I could just feel the hydration.”


ROUTINE: “I’m very disciplined. Twice a week, very early in the morning, I’ll do Ashtanga yoga in my house with a trainer or sometimes with a tape called Yoga for Athletes. I live on 62nd Street, and I run all the way to the reservoir, twice around, and come back. Also, every other day, I meet a trainer from Baraka in the park by the fountain near 72nd Street. We rotate weight training, stretching, kick-boxing. I hate gyms. On Mondays, I play soccer at Chelsea Piers. A group of hairdressers and friends just played against the women’s team, the New York Power. The women won.”
VICES: “Cheese. I found a site called You can get cheese in two days from Normandy.”


ROUTINE: “I got serious when I found out I was performing at the Essence Awards. I wanted to get onstage and not worry about my stomach hitting the keyboard before I did. I work out every day, and I like to get there before my trainer and do 45 minutes of cardio alone.”
DIET: “I’m no longer having any bread . . . no wheat, dairy, red meat. As a child, I would get up in the morning and my dad would make hoecake—like biscuits, only it’s one big piece of bread, with an inch of butter all over the bottom piece and then another inch of plain, white, processed sugar on top of the butter. By midday, I couldn’t sit up. Turned out I was hypoglycemic.”
MOTIVATION: “You don’t want it to be said at any point in your existence, here or in the hereafter, that you didn’t take care of the temple, that you left it dirty, that there was poopoo. You wouldn’t leave your house like that, so why treat your body like that?”


Dancer, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
ROUTINE: “When we’re on tour or at City Center, we’re in rehearsal from 1 to 6, in class for technique from 6 to 7, preparing the show from 7 to 8, and performing from 8 to 10:30. In the off-season, we rehearse from 10:30 to 7.”
DIET: Three meals a day. “A balanced breakfast, eggs and bacon, oatmeal. If it’s a hard day, I try not to put a lot of food in my stomach, because it doesn’t sit well. But as a company, we eat. Some ballet companies starve themselves, but if you don’t eat, you usually find yourself passed out.”


Actor, You Can Count on Me
ROUTINE: “I have a membership at Crunch—I go twice a week to jog and do weights—and I go to Power Pilates on 23rd Street. It’s heaven. When you’re able to hang upside down on the Cadillac, it feels pretty good. It was really essential when I was doing The Crucible, because the posture we had to maintain was so rigid and upright.”
DIET: “Pasta. It’s one of God’s gifts.”


Anchor, WNBC
ROUTINE: “I do it for three months, and then I take a break. There’s a gym at NBC on the eighth floor. I just competed with three other anchorwomen from across the country with three different arm workouts, and I’ve kept that regimen up—push-ups, these squats with medicine balls, which are just awful.”
MOTIVATION: “TV adds ten to fifteen pounds. People are always saying to me, ‘Oh, you’re so much thinner than I thought you were!’ In the back of your mind, you’re always thinking about that.”
DISLIKES: “Arms are hard. I tend to get those real saggy things hanging down—my mother and my aunt all have it—and I look at them and go Ahhhh!”


Interior designer
ROUTINE: “I always had a decent body. It only started to expand maybe fifteen or twenty years ago. I go to Fitness Results in the Flatiron district twice a week and train with Ari Weller [who also trained P. Diddy]. We do golf swings with the medicine balls.”
DIET: “Usually rare beef.”


Routine: “Equinox three days a week, though when I’m not working, I probably do more and do yoga twice a week with my personal teacher, Kelly Stone.”
Diet: “I just eat.”


ROUTINE: “After years of playing the guitar, I shift my weight over to my left hip, so my left side tends to be shorter than my right, and Pilates has really helped my back a lot.”
DIET: “A couple of years ago, I started reading this book called Volumetrics, and I lost thirteen pounds on it. It’s mostly high-fiber: a lot of grains, cereals, breads, and pasta. With high-protein diets, I would get very cranky and irritable.”

CYNTHIA ROWLEY (won’t divulge age)

ROUTINE: “I’m not very good at relaxing, so in the summer I water-ski and surf and play tennis and Ping-Pong. In the winter, I started doing this Muay Thai boxing at World Gym. It’s like a secret club with a lot of guys downstairs. It’s pretty hard-core. I leave there every time thinking I broke something.”
DIET: “I actually have the worst diet. I’m like all fat and sugar all the time, and usually late at night. I kind of pack it away—you know, strap on the feed bag. Someone told me not to eat dairy, that that’s what gives you all the ripply yucky stuff. I thought that was good advice.”


ROUTINE: “I rarely work out, being on the road a lot. I have a verse that goes, ‘Out of shape, but I make sure that my gun’s healthy.’ Just ’cause I’m too lazy to work out don’t mean that I can’t handle mine.”
TOO LAZY? ARE YOU SURE? “I play basketball every Tuesday and Thursday with some of the guys from Ruff Ryders. They have a gym in Harlem, and the neighborhood guys go to a park uptown, the Rucker. Those are some of the best players that are not in the NBA. I also know the Ruff Ryders who do The Thug Workout [a new exercise video]. It comes from jail where people do push-offs off the bed or sit-ups off the bed. I do at least 500 to 1,000 push-ups a day."


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