Seeing all these photos of Michelle Pfeiffer, who is nearing 50, looking sooooooo good at the Hairspray premiere piqued my curiosity and I had to find out what she has been doing to maintain her radiant glow and lithe, little body.
Lucky for me, W Magazine recently featured her trainers, Jerzy and Aniela Gregorek, so I can share with you the inside scoop.
The Gregoreks run The Happy Body, a gym in Woodside, CA where Michelle relocated from LA a few years ago. Jerzy and Aniela, both Polish born retired competitive weight lifters, don't mess around. Their workout philosophy is all old-school resistance training with a bit of meditation thrown in. They have created a unique, if somewhat limited in my opinion, approach to fitness.
Here are some highlights:
On cardio: “Original treadmills were created to punish prisoners. Exercise should not be punishment. The more you run, the weaker and less flexible you become.” Jerzy discourages all endurance workouts, except for occasional walks, hikes, and swims.
Customized series of anaerobic training, involving 3 sequences of exercises, taking no more than 30 minutes to perform. Exercises are performed 7 days a week. Exercises are familiar gym fare: squats with light hand weights, the bicycle move for abdominals. The breathing has been tweaked so you inhale before the repetition and exhale after, as well as other alteration create a subtle changes.
Meditation: 5 minutes of meditation with lavender oil dabbed on the forehead – since anxiety “burns muscle tissue.”
If you want to see how Michelle has been eating
The Diet: Clients are encouraged to eat only 2 low carb, low sugar meals per day. Almost no dairy fat and only limited fruits. 3 daily snacks are permitted – ½ a Clif bar or ½ Kashi Go lean Bar or a piece of hemp bread with soy cheese.
The Goal: 13% body fat for women and 10% body fat for men. To provide a little reference for how extreme this goal truly is - the body fat percentage for general fitness is 24% and below, and 14 – 18 % body fat considered the percentage for elite female athletes.
My take: Way too extreme on the food front. Fat is important for women’s body to function correctly. Low body fat is associated with menstrual irregularities and fertility problems. I also believe in a well rounded fitness regimen – cardio (working the heart and lungs is important!) and resistance training mixed with flexibility training. Me? I am sticking to a mixture of all three forms of exercise. I am going to run and have my cake and eat it too.
W Magazine June, 2007