Many know Bethenny Frankel as one of the stars of The Real Housewives of New York, which developed into her spinoff, Bethenny's Getting Married (both on Bravo). But she is also a natural-food chef, as well as an accomplished author and workout guru. I spoke with her recently about her new workout DVD, Body by Bethenny, which is available in stores and online now at most major retail outlets. But don't worry — I managed to sneak in some Real Housewives questions as well.
Celebrity Extra: I saw an “after-baby” picture of you online, and you looked absolutely FAB! A lot of my readers want to know how you lost the baby weight?
Bethenny Frankel: I had no idea what I would be in for after the baby. My gut instinct was to stick by what I preach in Naturally Thin and do my Body by Bethenny DVD when I felt up to it. I gained 35 pounds and gave birth early, but the weight simply came off afterward because I wasn't extreme about dieting nor had I binged while pregnant. Just be balanced before, during and after, and treat your diet like a bank account, and you will have no issue. It's the extremes that kill you.
CE: How did the whole idea for the workout DVD come about?
BF: People think I work out every day and do some psychotic drastic workout. What I do is key yoga moves a few days a week, but I'm consistent. I wanted to show people what I really do and that it doesn't have to be extreme or overwhelming.
CE: Was is it about the DVD that makes the workout right for most women and most fitness levels?
BF: This is yoga but not a spiritual class, and not too easy nor too challenging. It works for all levels and can be toned down or jacked up for each person or your mood that day.
CE: Is this easy to pick up for people who’ve never done yoga?
BF: This is absolutely for beginners and advanced yogis. I've been doing yoga for 20 years, but some days I can't bend over.
CE: How do you motivate yourself to exercise, when you are too busy or too tired, which is a problem for a lot of women, new mothers especially?
BF: I do what I can. Even if I do 15 minutes of the DVD, it's better than nothing and doesn't make me dread it. I also like that you do it at home. Sometimes I do it while my baby is in the bouncy seat next to me.
CE: You are also a natural-food chef — what is a typical day of eating for you?
BF: No two days are the same, which is why I'm "naturally thin." I eat according to my mood, location, the circumstances, etc. This liberating lifestyle makes for no binging.
CE: With the Skinnygirl book series, how did that idea spring to life, and how did it turn into a publishing deal?
BF: Naturally Thin has helped thousands of people to lose incredible amounts of weight. I wrote it because I found the key to unlock people's thinness without ever dieting again — I had to share it. Skinnygirl Dish teaches people how to cook how I do: healthfully and delicious using what I happen to have in my kitchen.
CE: What advice about eating and working out would you give women who work full time (especially in sedentary jobs) and might find it hard to keep a balance?
BF: Don't be stressed or frustrated. Take a moment to plan. Never binge or diet. Understand that being "naturally thin" becomes part of your fiber so you never need to be stressed or overwhelmed. You can only do what you can but make sure you are doing what you can when you can.
CE: Will there be another season of Real Housewives of New York, and if so, will you return to the show?
BF: I very highly doubt I will go back to Housewives. I don't see any reason or upside for that.
CE: I think it is great that you got a spinoff, Bethenny’s Getting Married. How did that deal come about — was it your idea, the producers, or both?
BF: The show was the idea of myself and Bravo. The viewers wanted a closer look at my life. The show is and will always be about exactly what is going on in my life — and that is a lot!