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I'm not sure why they even bother giving awards for, you know, acting ability and stuff. I mean, that's nice and everything, but all anyone -- aside from those who get a cut of the gross -- cares about is how the stars look on the red carpet. Specifically, what (correction: who) they're wearing, which body parts are insufficiently covered, and how wackadoodle their diet and exercise regimen had to have been.
Celebrities seem to want us to think it's easy to be them, throwing over-the-sculpted-shoulder pouts at the camera, revealing defined muscles all the way down their backless dresses to their butt cleavage. A few will talk vaguely about cutting out bread for a week.
Do not believe them. Whatever they say, these women perform superhuman acts of self-sacrifice and self-tanning to become the glittering goddesses we see, training like Olympians in advance of the Golden Globes and, of course, the big O next month. (The actual Olympics are this month, but we already know the athletes will be covered up in boring old ski pants.)
Like, our girl Gwyneth works out up to two hours a day, even when it's not Oscar season, and goes no dairy, no sugar, no gluten, nothing processed for several weeks a couple of times a year. That leaves...air and kale? Others, like Halle Berry, pop out babies and boing back as if they'd been carrying them in their Chanel handbags. And remember when you thought Beyoncé had gone cray-cray losing 20 pounds in two weeks on the Master Cleanse for Dreamgirls? Cleanses are now the new black.
The truth is, it's dang hard to look like Gwyneth or Halle or Cameron or Nicole, and to keep it tight, not just on Oscar night but year-round -- even if you do have a full staff to whip your already tiny ass into shape. Alls I'm saying is, perspective, people. Admire, sure, and go ahead, aspire. But be happy your only Oscar prep involves air-popping a big bowl of popcorn (and perhaps holding the butter in solidarity.)
Originally published in FITNESS magazine, February 2014.