Sarah Chalke's Stay-Slim Secrets
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Sarah Spills Her Secrets
Sarah Chalke has a very special -- well, okay, weird -- talent: She can write with her "freakishly long finger toes," as she calls them. It's a skill the 32-year-old Scrubs star honed growing up in British Columbia, where, she says, "I used to pass notes with my toes in class. I never got caught."
Chalke is, in fact, pretty handy with her feet. She was a part-time ski instructor until age 16, when she landed the part of Becky Conner on Roseanne. And she has done her share of three-day hikes through the Garibaldi Belt, a range of volcanic mountains north of Vancouver. "By the end, you have so many blisters you don't want to put your hiking boots back on," she says.
Chalke isn't the type to sit still -- at least not for long. She even talks at breakneck speed. When she auditioned for the role of Scrubs' Dr. Elliot Reid, some of the character's traits instantly struck a chord. "[The script] said, 'She moves and talks at a faster pace than normal humans,'" Chalke recalls. "The feedback I'd always gotten on auditions was 'slow down,' so it was fun as Elliot to get to go with it."
This is the eighth, and possibly final, season of Scrubs. And Chalke is busier than ever. She appeared on several episodes of How I Met Your Mother last year, and this spring she stars in Maneater, a Lifetime Original miniseries about a Hollywood It girl who is determined to marry the hottest producer in town. She spoke to FITNESS after demonstrating her toe-writing abilities by giving us an autograph. The signature was shaky, and the heart she added for a flourish looked a little like a squashed bug. But, hey, you gotta love a girl who gets her feet dirty.
FITNESS: You've described yourself as klutzy, yet you can write with your toes. Sure you're not exaggerating?
Sarah Chalke: I have torn the ligaments in my left ankle seven times. The first time was during a college psychology class that took place in a huge lecture hall. My leg fell asleep, and when I got up after class to ask the professor a question, I rolled right over my ankle and fell flat on my face in front of 400 or so people.
FITNESS: Okay, you are klutzy! Is that the most embarrassing thing you've ever done?
Sarah Chalke: Omigod, no. I peed in my Brownie uniform right in the middle of class when I was in kindergarten. That was high on the embarrassment scale. More recently, I lost my engagement ring. It happened after an acupuncture session that left me kind of out of it. I was wearing the ring when I went in, and then about three hours later I realized I didn't have it on. One of my friends helped me retrace my steps. There we were, crawling on our hands and knees on Ventura Boulevard looking under cars, peering into grates. We never found it. Luckily the ring was insured and my fiance, Jamie, was unbelievably understanding about the whole thing. This [she holds up her new emerald-cut diamond ring] is engraved with Je t'aime on one side and Jamie's cell phone number on the other.
FITNESS: What's your funniest fitness moment?
Sarah Chalke: One time I was out for a walk, stepped on a pinecone and wrecked my ankle. Another time I did it when I tripped while hiking with my dog. It was never for an extreme sport, which would have at least given me a good story.
FITNESS: Did you play sports as a kid, or were you watching from the sidelines?
Sarah Chalke: All I wanted growing up was to be on a sports team, any sports team. I tried out for the volleyball team, but I didn't make it, even after I went to volleyball camp. I ended up doing the two most underattended sports -- shot put and racewalking. I actually made it to the state finals in racewalking, which may sound really nerdy but is very demanding physically. People throw up all the time. In the tenth grade, I finally made the basketball team. I spent most of the season on the bench, but I had a uniform with a number on it.
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