The 5 Best Fitness Tips from Dancing with the Stars Contestants

dancing-with-the-stars-judges by

Jennie Garth – Eat every 3 hours.

Jennie Garth by greenredapple_06
Jennie Garth, a photo by greenredapple_06 on Flickr.

“I eat a lot now. I’m always hungry. And when you’re rehearsing for six hours, sometimes you forget to eat. I snack on a lot of energy bars while we’re working, or a banana just to keep me going, and then I’ll eat a giant sandwich. I’m just burning through it. Now I can eat and not worry about it. ” (Source: Getty)

Kirstie Alley – Get some momentum, and roll with it.

kirstie alley dress 1 by erangi2
kirstie alley dress 1, a photo by erangi2 on Flickr.

Kelly Osbourne – DON’T be afraid to snack before bed!

Kelly Osbourne Oct. 22 by reallifeiselsewhere
Kelly Osbourne Oct. 22, a photo by reallifeiselsewhere on Flickr.

“I’ve completely changed the way I eat since doing Dancing With the Stars. A trick I’ve learned is to eat just a little bit of something that has no carbs and no sugar in it before you go to sleep because it keeps your metabolism going. They say you should never eat before you go to bed, but I’ve found just having a tiny little snack — like half an apple or something like that — before you go to sleep really helps.” (Source: Getty)

Julianne Hough – Start early in the day. And don’t expect one workout to do it all.

Julianne Hough by az29c
Julianne Hough, a photo by az29c on Flickr.

“There are certain areas of the body that dancing won’t tone, so I still stretch and do crunches, lunges, and arm moves just about every day. I prefer to work out early because it gives me an energy boost for the rest of the day. With free weights I can do little twists and turns and almost choreograph my workouts. That’s more fun for me, and the time goes by faster.” (Source: FitnessQuotes)

Melissa Rycroft – Make healthy alternatives of the meals that may not be so good for you.

Melissa Rycroft and Tye Strickland pose with Blue Man Group by venetianlasvegas
Melissa Rycroft and Tye Strickland pose with Blue Man Group, a photo by venetianlasvegas on Flickr.

Melissa Rycroft, who was in excellent shape all through Dancing, later shared her tips for her wedding day with Examiner:


  • Load up on the fruits and vegetables
  • Allow yourself to cheat and give in to cravings in moderation
  • Stick to lean meats and eat lean protein at every meal
  • Make healthy alternatives to some of your favorite dishes that may not be so healty for you


  • Eat too much sugar
  • Rely on salt for taste
  • Turn to weight-loss extremes
  • Binge at night

Bottom Line

It seems getting in shape with Dancing with the Stars comes back to common sense and repeated daily disciplines:  Start early, workout daily, eat small meals (less than 300-400 calories) every 3 hours, and don’t be afraid to eat something small before bed if you are craving it (and have good self-control)!

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Photo source:  dancing-with-the-stars-judges, a photo by on Flickr.

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Daily Inspiration: “Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” -Jim Rohn

Body. by giò87

Confession #1: I’ve felt sick, on and off, for a long time.

Confession #2: I haven’t done much about it.

Despite being a blogger who writes about health and beauty and fitness, I’ve been scared to go to the doctor. Not only because of what he might tell me, but partially because I know it will make me fully accountable for my entire life. As it stands right now, I’m a medical student, blogger, girlfriend, daughter, home and puppy owner. Oh, and I’m lucky enough to have some wonderful friends too! If something goes wrong and I run a fever or a bad stomachache, I have an excuse to lay down for a few minutes (or a few hours). If the doc tells me I’m fine, saying “I don’t feel well” isn’t gonna cut it anymore.

The personal achievement expert Jim Rohn says that the day we cross into adulthood is the day we start to take full accountability for our lives. Not just the parts we like or the ones that work out the way we plan, but all of it. Even accidents, tragedies, terrible events out of our control – maybe we can’t control what happened, but we can control what we do about it. More importantly, we can take full responsibility for the way we let our circumstances affect our thoughts, beliefs, and actions.

I wrote the other day about holding ourselves back due to our perpetual fear of what others think. Why are we so afraid of looking like we’re trying too hard? There’s really no such thing. Once you try as hard as you can, and do as much as you can, something miraculous happens: You grow. Your limit expands. Pretty soon, we’re running marathons when we thought we couldn’t walk five miles. Besides, I’d always rather overwhelm than underwhelm (unless we’re talking about a first date or something, then maybe play it cool). I’m always drawn to the people who can dazzle, make mountains out of molehills, give a 5-minute presentation that doesn’t even count for a grade or work credit as though their life depended on it.

As for me, I know I won’t be able to live my life to the fullest unless I get myself to the doctor. So, today, I picked up the phone and made an appointment. If he tells me I’m actually O.K., then I’m going to pursue my goals in all aspects of my life with a no-holds-barred type of resilience again. If, on the other hand, if he tells me I am actually ill, I’m going to do whatever he says to get better, and then start living my life to the very best of my ability. No excuses. No more sleeping in on my days off. Really, truly seizing every day.

How many of us feel like we’re sleeping until our “real lives” start? How many of us can look back at 2009, 2010, maybe even 2003 or 2004 and say, “Gosh, that felt like it was a minute ago?” That’s a sign to me that we’re not really living. Every day holds a chance to do something sensational. But first, we just have to make sure we’re healthy enough to make the most of every moment.

What have you been putting off? What about your life do you want to change? Share in Comments, Facebook, or Twitter!

Photo source:  Body., a photo by giò87 on Flickr.

Daily Question: Does TriLastin Work on Stretch Marks?

Via the Facebook page:

Do you know anything about Trilastin for stretch marks?


Dear Linda,

Stretch marks are often seen following puberty and pregnancy, as well as in chronic yo-yo dieters and body builders.   The exact mechanism by which stretch marks develop is unknown, but may occur when the maximum tensile strength of elastic fibers within the skin is exceeded.  It has been shown that stretch marks contain decreased amounts of fibrillin and elastic fibers, and an increase in glycosaminoglycans (British Journal of Dermatology, 2008).  The study also showed stretch marks have disorganized fibrillin and elastic fibers.

Elastic fibers (right) within the subcutaneous tissue of a young rabbit.

Trilastin ($86.00, claims to work by releasing microspheres of collagen onto the skin.  These microspheres are supposed to deliver hydration first, followed by healing bio-extracts.  These form a “micro-net” that supposedly enables the skin to heal.

Unfortunately, while this all sounds great, the ideal stretch mark treatment would cause fibrillin and elastin fibers to grow in higher numbers and to reorganize themselves.  This is why laser treatments are so effective in treating stretch marks:  A 1996 Dermatologic Surgery study showed a 585 nm laser increases collagen and elastin production within the skin.  Lasers do this by stimulating cells called fibroblasts, which are responsible for collagen and elastin production.  Now, Trilastin does contain collagen microspheres, so it is possible that some of the collagen could get into the lower layers of the skin (i.e., the dermis).  However, there is no way Trilastin could influence the collagen and elastin fibers within the skin to reorganize themselves.

What Treatments are Better than TriLastin?

Trilastin may temporarily improve the appearance of small stretch marks because the cream delivers a lot of hydration.  However, I would recommend 585-nm laser treatments, which have been shown to be more effective than even CO2 treatments in reducing stretch marks (Dermatologic Surgery, 1999).   I would caution that laser treatments are not as effective for darker skin types (Dermatologic Surgery, 1999).  Those with darker skin may benefit more from 0.1% tretinoin, which has been shown to produce clinically significant improvement in the length and width of stretch marks (Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 1998).  Other similar treatments include Retin-A, Renova, Avita, Differin, and Tazorac.  This is available by prescription from your doctor.

What about over-the-counter stretch mark treatments?

I like Mederma for treating stretch marks.  Mederma contains an onion-bulb extract that has been shown to improve collagen organization within existing scars (Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 2002).  Now, granted, the study was conducted on rabbit ears, but personal experience has taught me that generous twice-daily application of Mederma can really make a difference on existing stretch marks.

What about preventing stretch marks?

As far as over-the-counter treatments go, I like camellia oil.  According to a 2007 study in Ethnobiology, camellia oil increases collagen production within the skin and promotes hydration.  Camellia oil was found to stimulate collagen production by two mechanisms:

  • One, camellia oil activates a gene promoter in human skin cells called COL1A2, which starts the production of collagen [type I].
  • Two, camellia oil prevents the breakdown of collagen by inhibiting matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-1, an enzyme that breaks down collagen.

Add in the fact that camellia oil-treated skin had less transepidermal water loss (TEWL) than non-treated skin just 1-2 hours after treatment, and I’m a fan.  However, I must say that I like camellia oil better for the prevention of stretch marks than the treatment.  Unlike laser treatments, camellia oil will not cause existing stretch marks to dissolve.  Instead, it will promote the growth of more collagen while you are growing, such as during weight gain or pregnancy.   My favorite product with camellia oil is Elemis Japanese Camellia Oil ($45.00,

Bottom Line

Those with minor stretch marks may experience a slight improvement from  Trilastin.  This is because the small collagen microspheres in Trilastin can hydrate and temporarily increase the amount of collagen in the general area of the stretch marks.  However,  Trilastin cannot cause collagen or elastin fibers to naturally increase in number, nor can it cause these fibers to reorganize.  Treatments like the 585-nm laser do this, resulting in more lasting improvements, particularly for those with lighter skin tones.  These can be of significant cost ($600-800) and require 1-3 rounds of treatment, scheduled 6-12 weeks apart in order to allow the skin to heal.  They, however, work wonderfully and have lasting results.

If you must have an over-the-counter treatment, I recommend Mederma for treating existing stretch marks, or Elemis Japanese Camellia Oil for preventing stretch marks during times of weight gain or pregnancy.  Remedies like cocoa butter and vitamin E have been suggested for centuries due to their hydrating properties, but unfortunately, these are not doing anything to stimulate and/or reorganize collagen elastin fibers.

Product Rating:  5/10 (High or optimized concentration of proven-effective ingredients:  1/3.  Unique formulation or new technology:  2/3.  Value for the money: 1/3.  Sunscreen: 0/1).

Water (Aqua), Cetearyl Alcohol, Cyclopentasiloxane, Peg-3 Benzyl, Ether Myristate, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric, Triglyceride, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Butylene Glycol, Octyldodecanol, Beeswax, Polyacrylamide, C13-14 Isoparaffin Laureth-7, Behenyl Alcohol, Glyceryl, Stearate Citrate, Sodium Dicocoylethylenediamine, Peg-15 Sulfate, Zea Mays (Corn) Kernel Extract, Xanthan Gum, Methylparaben, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Propylparaben, Azelaic Acid, Pueraria Lobata, Root Extract, Algin, Sodium Citrate, Caprylyl Glycol, Hexylene Glycol, Atelocollagen, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Polyglyceryl 3 Methylglucose Distearate, Arctostaphylos Uva Ursi Leaf Extract, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Hydrolyzed Elastin, Chlorella Vulgaris Extract, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Butylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Ethylparaben, Sodium Chondroitin Sulfate, Dimethicone, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Disodium Edta, Bht, Tocopheryl Acetate, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Retinyl Palmitate, Ubiquinone, Palmitic Acid, Thioctic Acid, Beta Carotene, Phytonadione, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract.

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