You know those super-svelte celebs who are always bragging, "I just eat what I want...and I never work out"? Well, Molly Sims, model-turned-TV-host-and-jewelry-designer, is definitely not one of them. "This does not come naturally," says the Southern-born belle of her cover-worthy physique. "I have to work out 60 to 90 minutes at least five days a week and stick to a high-fiber, low-calorie eating plan." But healthy diligence didn't come naturally to Molly either.
Until a couple of years ago, her fitness routine was hit or miss, and her diet philosophy was "Less is more." Fed up with constant weight fluctuations, Molly, 38, made a resolution that changed her life. "I wanted to be consistent with my exercise, so I committed to working out for 30 days in a row, no matter what," she says. "For an hour every day, I did something. I was on the elliptical or the treadmill, and if someone asked me to go to a class—whether it was spinning, boxing, yoga, you name it—I went. By the end of the month, I felt so good, I just kept going. I didn't want to lose my momentum."
Today Molly has many effective strategies. Here are a few…
What's the biggest get-fit obstacle? Hands down, for most people it's getting (and staying) motivated, says Molly. So she's created an admittedly mercenary—but foolproof—plan to stay on track. She sets a weekly goal like, "I'm going to get up every morning at 6:30 to work out," says Molly. "Then, when I've kept with it all week, I give myself something I really want, like a new handbag or a piece of jewelry I'm coveting."
Drop 5 fast—no fad diet required
Two weeks before her wedding to film producer Scott Stuber last September, Molly realized she needed to drop about five pounds—but she wanted to do it the right way. First, she nixed all salt and almost all oils, even from foods with "good" fats like avocados, and lowered her carb intake. "Then, a week before the event, I also cut out alcohol and soy sauce, and I increased my water intake," says Molly. "On the big day, my dress fit perfectly and I felt fantastic."
Pump up with your partner
"My mom was on my daddy to exercise all the time," says Molly. "She was like, 'Listen buddy, if I'm doing this, you're doing it too.' And I agree!" Molly says she and Scott had one of their biggest arguments when he felt too busy to exercise. "I was so upset, but he needs to stay active!" These days, the couple coordinates sessions together, which helps them both stay motivated.
Be classically chic
Always have a few pieces in your wardrobe that never go out of style, Molly advises, then add flair to any outfit with—surprise!—some well-chosen accessories. "My staples are a beautiful pair of black pants, a lightweight coat, a great black heel, and a black cardigan. Everything else is just a topping on my fashion sundae." For a time-less look, she'll add a string of pearls. "I could also go boho with tons of different beads and crystals," says Molly, "or opt for a rock 'n' roll vibe with mixed metals."
Sweat it out
No time for a full-on workout session? Even just 15 minutes of activity will do you good. "Whether it's time on the treadmill or an upper-body routine," says Molly, "you just have to get that heart rate up and keep it there." For some extra sweat equity, Molly turns up the heat in her exercise room.
The January issue of Shape hits stands on December 26.