|It's 6 a.m. on the Venice
Beach, California, set of Pacific Blue--the USA network's cops-on-bikes
action series--and star Paula Trickey is already feeling the heat.
"It's usually 80 degrees or more here by midday," says the
actress. But while staying cool can be tough, staying slim is "no
sweat," laughs Paula--even though she admits to gaining eight to
ten pounds when the show is on hiatus.
How can she afford such a relaxed attitude--especially considering her
TV wardrobe is full of skimpy shorts and swimsuits? "I never panic
about my weight, because I know how to get it off fast," says
Paula. Her plan, she reveals, is one that necessity helped her invent...
Ever since her high school days, Paula says, she's been a
procrastinator. And just as she crammed for tests, she's often found
herself "cramming" to lose weight for important events--like
the time she was in a beauty pageant. "I basically starved myself,
not eating for two weeks, and then gained 20 pounds as soon as the
pageant was over because my body went into starvation mode," she
says. The experience left her drained--and feeling like she should be
covering up instead of entering swimsuit competitions. Luckily, this
happened just as she decided to move to Hollywood, when she caught on to
healthy-living trends and began winning her waistline back.
"But when I first landed Pacific Blue, again I found myself ten
pounds from my ideal weight and with just weeks to lose them,"
sighs Paula. But this time, she asked around the gym for an alternative
to her old starvation plan. The result? She got lots of ideas on how to
"cram" the healthy way.
|Here are her tricks:
Spending as little time in the kitchen as possible. After all,
the kitchen is where temptation lurks, says Paula, who found ways to get
1,200 delicious calories a day using lots of ready-made ingredients and
even buying low-fat takeout. Smart move, say pros at Cornell University,
who performed a study and found the more readily available food was, the
more test subjects ate--and the less weight they lost.
Taking a break from bread. Though she'd heard diet gurus swear by
fat-free staples like bagels and pitas, Paula noticed that when she ate
a little of these foods, she'd want more. "And those calories add
up quickly," she says, echoing the sentiments of a new wave of
Notes the Zone author Barry Sears, Ph.D.: "We fatten cattle by
feeding them lots of low-fat grain." And grain-based foods,
especially bread, have the same effect on humans.
And when Paula longed for a slice of toast? She'd remind herself
"its just for a couple of weeks" and enjoy things like fruit,
vegetables, beans and soy-based foods instead.
Drinking 12 to 16 cups of water a day. Paula's reasoning was
simple: "You're just not as hungry when you're drinking lots of
water." Plus, according to exercise scientist Ellington Darden,
Ph.D., getting plenty of this pure liquid aids the body in burning
Adding two workout sessions. "I normally work out three
times a week so I maintain muscle tone," she says. But as her
get-skinny deadline drew near, "I made a commitment to work out on
the treadmill five times a week," she says.
Exercises with light weights--such as bicep curls and shoulder
presses--are also part of her regimen. For good measure, Paula also
added fun, calorie-burning extras like a round of golf or a quick swim.
How well did Paula's plan work? Her producer-husband Richard Thurber was
the first to notice, recalls Paula. "He said something like,
'Honey, you look so lean!'"
Ecstatic, the actress noticed her clothes were feeling looser again. And
as she got ready for her first day on the set, she hopped on the scale.
Victory! "I stood a little taller and felt a little prettier all
day long," she says.
In fact, standing tall and feeling pretty has become a ritual--because
just about every time the show goes on hiatus, Paula puts on eight or
ten pounds and then uses her old plan to slim down in as little as 10
"I allow myself the extra weight," says the 5'7" actress,
who fluctuates between 115 and 125 pounds. "Now I don't necessarily
like the way it looks in the mirror, but instead of feeling depressed, I
feel confident knowing I can lose it."
And she has confidence that, using the no-fail strategy she discovered,
you can lose it too! To make it easy for WW readers to test her plan,
Paula helped us create ultra-easy, no-cook meals lik the ones she enjoys
while losing wight, plus a simple exercise schedule you can personalize
to suit your lifestyle.