Ballerina's are known for their incredible bodies and the even more incredible things that they can do with them. But how does one keep in that perfect shape under a leotard that hides nothing.
Fueling the body while maintaining a small figure is the ultimate struggle for professional ballerinas like Lauren Fadeley, a principal dancer at the Pennsylvania Ballet, who sat down with PopSugar to explain how she manages that tiny frame.
The Power of Snacking
Lauren is a big supporter of grazing. Eating a little bit constantly throughout the day works better for her than a full meal. She typically starts her day of with fruit, nuts, and coffee and then is sure to keep her bag filled with healthy snacks like protein bars and fresh veggies to munch on during her breaks.
Once practice is over, Lauren finally has her big meal which is a lot of lean proteins and veggies (PopSugar says that spaghetti squash with a ground turkey tomato sauce is her favorite) This all refuels her body and preps her for the next day's grueling schedule - where she does it all over again!
Those leotards are unforgiving. There are no fat-jeans or baggy t-shirts in ballet.
Feeling bloat-free is important for many dancers. As Lauren says, "We have to wear a leotard all day long and stare at ourselves in a mirror — that can get a little hard!"
That's why she has chosen to follow a mostly Paleo and gluten-free diet during the week. It helps her feel less weighed-down and her tummy manages to stay flatter in times of need.
Go Ahead and Indulge
Lauren may stick to a strict diet during the week but weekends are another story. She's a big fan of tacos and saves them for her weekend treats. During the week, she makes a point to include dark chocolate in her snacks and Paleo-friendly desserts like coconut milk ice cream after dinner.
Her best advice? Listen to your body. "I eat what my body tells me to," she says. "There'll be times when I just need to eat a bagel to get me through a show."