Supermodel Adriana Lima credits a low-carb Paleo diet and intense boxing and circuit-training workouts for her sizzling physique.
Adriana, who has been a Victoria's Secret Angel for the past 14 years, said constant travel makes fitting in regular workouts hard, which is why she always travels with a jump rope.
“It’s been hard [to work out every day] because I’ve been traveling so much,” Lima told the Daily News. “When you travel, just carry a rope with you and then all you need is a space, anywhere, and you can jump for 10 minutes. Even if you do a little bit, you have great results no matter what."
Intense Boxing and Circuit-Training Workouts
Lima has been training with Michael Olajide, a former middleweight boxing champ, for the past 10 years. It was Olajide who turned Adriana on to the benefits of jumping rope. "So many people have not discovered the benefits of a jump rope," said Olajide, author of Sleekify: The Supercharged No-Weights Workout.
Olajide, who's responsible for Adriana's stunning post-baby weight loss after each of her two pregnancies, said Lima's workouts combine muscle-sculpting moves with rigorous cardio exercise and shadow-boxing.
The intense workouts can burn up to 1,000 calories per session, said Olajide. The best part is, Adriana enjoys doing them. "I like intense workouts, nothing slow," she said. "I like to sweat,"
Of course, exercise is only part of the equation for achieving a supermodel body. The 5-foot-10 Lima, who weighs about 135 pounds, follows a low-carb Paleo diet that's low in sugar, carbs and processed foods. Adriana's diet typically features high-quality proteins like grilled meat and chicken, and she snacks on low-sugar fruits like blueberries and blackberries. She's also a fan of coconut water.
“I always like to eat healthy,” said Adriana, who's divorcing Serbian basketball pro Marko Jaric. “I’m a mom, I have two kids, so I have to set a great example. But I am also Brazilian so there’s a lot of Brazilian food involved too.”
'Everything You Eat Shows Up On the Outside'
The Paleo diet works well for women because it reduces the blood-sugar spikes and hormone surges that fuel overeating, mood swings and weight gain, said Esther Blum, author of Cavewomen Don't Get Fat.
The Paleo diet emphasizes high-quality animal proteins, healthy fats, vegetables and fruits, and excludes gluten, sugar, dairy, legumes, starches, alcohol and processed foods. It's the most popular diet around today, and has a large celebrity following, including NBA superstars Kobe Bryant and Ray Allen, and actors Kellan Lutz and Megan Fox.
Proponents say the Paleo diet promotes weight loss, lowers blood pressure, and prevents cancer, diabetes, heart disease, depression, and even Alzheimer's.
“Clinical trials have shown the Paleo Diet is the optimum diet that can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease, blood pressure, markers of inflammation, help with weight loss, reduce acne, promote optimum health and athletic performance,” said Loren Cordain author of The Paleo Answer.
Adriana said her beauty secrets include not washing or styling her hair too often, and making sure she eats plenty of antioxidant-rich foods like low-starch vegetables and wrinkle-fighting blueberries, which contain anti-aging essential fatty acids.
"Everything that goes in to your body is going to show up on the outside," Lima said. "You're going to see it in your skin and your hair and your nails. If you want your hair to grow faster, you can take flax seed oil or a flax seed pill. It's great! It will make your hair super-shiny and it's going to grow fast."
To maintain her lush locks, Adriana is careful not to overstress it with blow-drying or over-cleaning. "If you have dry hair, don't wash every day," Lima said. "And if you have very, very dry hair, wash once a week! The oils help your hair look better, but it also depends on activity. If you sweat a lot every day, of course you should wash more often or use dry shampoo."