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Justified's Joelle Carter Shares Her Healthy Life Tips

Justified star Joelle Carter gives back by hosting a charity event. (Photo courtesy of St. Baldrick's Foundation)

Justified star Joelle Carter gives back by hosting a charity event. (Photo by JNP Studio)

Just days ago, the FX show Justified was nominated for a little thing called a Peabody Award. And the network announced recently that the hit show, a modern day Wild West tale, was also picked up for it's third season.

I was lucky enough to speak with one of the show's stars, Joelle Carter (Ava Crowder on the show), whom you may also know from her work in High Fidelity and American Pie 2, or from her appearances on CSI: Miami, Monk and Cold Case. Read on to learn more about Joelle's take on overcoming physical hardships, charity work and her family's healthy habits.

Tell us about your character on Justified, Ava.

"She was in an abusive relationship and actually killed her husband at the dinner table. Now she's finding a new love interest and discovering what she wants and needs. She's a very complex character that seems sweet, but will pick up a shotgun to protect herself [Joelle does her own stunts!]. There are so many layers to Ava that have yet to be discovered."

Are you active off set?

"Yes! I actually was very into sports as a kid and loved soccer, but then was diagnosed with scoliosis. I had to wear a back brace for six years, and that experience definitely left me shy. But when I came out of it, it felt like I was leaving a turtle shell!

While I was dealing with the condition, my doctor suggested swimming to keep me limber and stretch my muscles. I really enjoyed it. Then I joined cross country in high school. I stuck with both activities after I received scholarships to swim and run in college. My knees aren't great today, but I enjoy running every now and then along the reservoir near my house. I wish I could swim more often than I do today, but I do look forward to teaching my 8 1/2-month-old daughter to swim!"

What are your favorite ways to exercise today?

"I just started doing Pilates on the reformer, do plenty of yoga and love PopPhysique."

How about foods? What are some of your family's favorite healthy and indulgent eats?

"When I met my husband, he was a vegetarian who didn't eat vegetables. But now he's trying to incorporate more unprocessed foods, like fruits and vegetables into his diet and I aim for whole foods too. My daughter actually just started eating solid foods and loves avocados and bananas.

You can't deny yourself everything, though. We love chocolate and keep it in the freezer alongside the coconut milk ice cream!"

We heard that you are quite active with charity work. Can you tell us more about your work with St. Baldrick's Foundation?

"St. Baldrick's raises money to support childhood cancer patients, their friends and family members, and helps them all realize that they aren't powerless against the disease. I feel really passionate about St. Baldrick's because they're not only funding cures, but better cures that are less painful and more effective. The group often hosts fundraising events where those close to the person with cancer gather donations, and then shave their heads in solidarity. It's amazing to see everyone stand up and say, 'I'm not going to be a victim.'"

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