The business of Hollywood this time of year is looking fabulous. Behind every red carpet and the near-endless stream of awards season events is a lot of hardcore physical prep. Dedicated pros are on call to assuage the stress as well as amp up a nominee or high-profile attendee’s fitness routine.
Although some shortcuts, binge fitness and fad crash diets are tempting — now trending is the Werewolf diet, a juice cleanse timed to moon phases — fitness experts recommend discipline and well-edited consumption. (Beyonce’s recent pre-Grammys, 22-day vegan regime yielded highly visible results.)
“As sleep regulates hormones, which impact stress levels, it is very important to get enough sleep, you need that first and foremost,” says Ramona Braganza, an L.A.-based fitness expert and celebrity trainer (ramonabraganza.com). Some kind of daily movement “to get systems firing, even if it’s just a 20-minute walk,” is essential, says Braganza, who is in the midst of training “Warcraft” thesps.
A pre-event workout pumps up muscles and contributes to emotional and physical well-being notes the vet trainer. Scheduling that workout is the challenge.
“During this time of year, because people are booked non-stop, it’s all about efficiency and time,” says Ashley Borden (ashleyborden.com) a trainer, fitness and lifestyle consultant with 22 years of experience. Begin by planning weekly high intensity workouts and mapping out where they can occur. “Planning with someone else is one route as it’s consistent, accountable and a motivator,” says Borden, whose past clients include Ryan Gosling (famous for his six-pack) and Reese Witherspoon.
Consistency is a fitness staple. “Yo-yo training yields problems and is not so easy as you get older.”
Complement year-round training by intensifying activity a few weeks out from an event and “clean up your food,” recommends Borden. To that end, avoid sugary items (and stay away from most craft service tables), high salt and processed foods that cause bloating. Remember: coffee is not a food group. Best practices dictate eating whole foods with as much color as possible.
“Stay hydrated and make sure there’s protein and fiber in your diet,” adds Braganza. Hydrated skin glows, so abstain from starchy carbs and drink a lot of water. Braganza suggests reflexology and massage to reduce muscle tension.
“We see a lot of requests for a combination of yoga and meditation: a workout for the mind helps rejuvenate and allows people to take on the day,” says Amber Loose, spa director at the Peninsula Beverly Hills, where a rooftop morning yoga class meets that demand.
At the Peninsula, spin bikes and free weights are often delivered to rooms, personal trainers are available 24 hours a day and the popular Pressed Juicery cleanse can be delivered to rooms. Fresh fruit and vegetable juices (and combinations thereof) are this season’s antidote to flawed food choices. An extensive menu of customized cold squeezed juices is also available at Culina at the Four Seasons Los Angeles, with take away containers for days spent on set or media interviews. The 285-room industry hangout also stocks its rooms with iPads loaded with on-topic nutrition and wellness videos from nutritionist Kimberly Snyder, such as “Healthy Red Carpet Food Tips.”
Several L.A. food delivery services simplify meal planning and support fitness goals during Oscar season. Paleta.com offers tasty and exact calorie count meals to those in the midst of events and packed schedules.
Even first-time nominees acknowledge the pressure of the awards season spotlight.
Jeffrey Karoff, whose docu short “Cavedigger” is nominated, says that, “as filmmakers we hide, we’re behind the lens, and having the light shed in our direction is something I’m not used to.” To prepare for the glare of Oscar’s spotlight, he upped his basketball workouts to three times a week and took up playing ultimate Frisbee a month out from the kudofest.