When country singer Carrie Underwood took to the stage for the CMA Music Festival in 2010, in a pair of teeny tiny Daisy Dukes, she immediately became the talking point of the evening. But it wasn’t her stonking voice that was causing the buzz in Nashville – it was her amazingly sculpted pins. Drawing envious gasps from the star-studded audience, which included Nicole Kidman and Taylor Swift, everyone was bursting to know how the former American Idol winner – who dropped two dress sizes after first appearing on the show in 2005 – got a set of pins to rival a supermodel. Ahlan! Live discovers her stem-slimming secrets…
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After dropping nine kilos since her rise to fame, Carrie now follows an uber-strict vegetarian diet to stay in celeb shape, and she keeps track of what she’s eating with a daily food journal. “I discovered that writing down everything I eat makes such a difference, because you never realise how much you’re consuming unless you read it later in the day,” she says, adding, “I’m a big night-time eater. When I can look at my diary and see how many calories I’ve consumed during the day, I’m able to figure out how much I can eat at night.”
The Ahlan! Live team kept a food diary by taking pictures on our phones before every drink, snack and meal - it's quick and simple to do, and totally shocking how much more we eat in a week than we imagined. Do it now to shock yourself slim!
Carrie is keen to avoid temptation on tour, revealing, “If there’s after-show food, you get pizza. I don’t do that. I don’t eat out ever.” Instead the 28-year-old stocks her tour bus fridge with healthy foods, limiting herself to 1,500 cals a day.
When Carrie has to eat out, she’s careful to keep track of what she’s eating. “I use this website, calorieking.com, when I’m on the road and have to eat out,” she says. “It has chain restaurants’ menus and lists the calories, carbs and fat for every dish, so I’m always prepared. For example, I know PF Chang’s has these lettuce wrap appetisers that are around 100 calories. One of those and an entree and I’m good to go.”
Working Those Pins
As well as doing high-intensity cardio, including kickboxing and running, at least three times a week, Carrie does a series of strength-training exercises – like jump squats and lunges to keep her pins in peak physique. She also strengthens her core with torso twists and stability ball exercises. “My favourite thing is cardio,” says Carrie. “It helps the pounds melt off and it gives me so much more energy. Now when I’m performing and running around the stage, it’s no big deal, whereas before I was gasping for breath. Working out has really paid off on stage.”
Try Carrie’s Signature Leg Workout
1. Back Lunges with a Bicep Curl
From a standing position, step one leg backwards into a deep lunge, then come back into a standing position, while also doing a bicep curl with free weights. Do 15 for each leg for two or three sets.
2. Front Lunges with a Torso Twist
Holding a medicine ball in front on you, step forward into a front lunge, then twist sideways in the direction of the lunge (if you lunge with your right leg, twist towards the right). Do 15 for each leg for two or three sets.
3. Jump Squats
From the squat position, jump into the air as high as you can, landing back into the squat position. Repeat for 20 to 25 reps.