Cheryl Burke feels on top of the world after her recent 15-pound weight loss. Burke credited a low-carb, high-protein diet and 90-minute circuit-training workouts for her impressive slim-down.
“The key to weight loss is combining diet with exercise," the "Dancing With the Stars" pro told People. Cheryl makes sure she doesn't skip workouts by exercising with her friend, actress Leah Remini, whom she met in 2013 on "Dancing With the Stars."
“We push each other!” said Burke. "She lives down the street from me so we're able to get up in the morning and work out together. When you have a buddy to work out with, you don't want to flake on that person."
The 5-foot-4 Cheryl slimmed down from 135 pounds to 120 pounds, and showed off her sleek bikini body on Instagram. “My waist is cinched and I can see an outline of my abs!” she said.
Burke, who endured cruel media fat-shaming after gaining weight in 2008, said intense fat-burning circuit-training workouts with her trainer, Brendan Johnston, has made a huge difference in her body.
"We'll run a mile on the treadmill, then get off and do biceps, triceps, squats, and repeat that about three times," she said. "Then we'll do abs towards the end. It shocks your body more than if you were just on a treadmill for three miles."
Burke, 30, said she has to work out harder now than she did when she was in her 20s because her metabolism has slowed down a bit. Her diet staples now include Greek yogurt, berries and lean meats, and her daily low-carb meal plan looks like this:
- Breakfast. Turkey bacon and egg whites.
- Lunch. Cobb salad with turkey bacon and no cheese.
- Dinner. Lentil soup or salad with lentils, peppers and corn salad.
Molested At Age 5 and Later Abused By Boyfriends
As a star on a hit TV show, Burke's life appears ideal on the outside, but she revealed she was molested by a family friend from the age of five and was later physically abused by two ex-boyfriends.
Cheryl, who testified against her molester and helped send him to jail for almost 20 years, says her parents' divorce when she was a baby gave her mixed feelings toward her abuser, a retired mailman who was well liked in her neighborhood.
Burke eventually helped put the molester behind bars after other children came forward and accused him of sexual abuse. Burke said it took years of therapy to heal from the sexual and emotional abuse, and hoped her coming forward will let other victims know they are not alone. Cheryl revealed her harrowing experiences in her memoir, Dancing Lessons.