Working Out Won’t Get You Gwyneth Paltrow’s Legs or J.Lo’s Butt, and Why That’s Okay
Most of us always want to know the secrets to obtain celebrity X’s enviable and toned physique. But celeb trainer Tracy Anderson, who has worked with some of the best bodies in the business, thinks that’s the wrong approach. At the recent Westin x Goop G. Sport Sessions in Chicago, Anderson talked about working out not for others or trends, but for ourselves.
For almost two decades, Anderson has maintained her authenticity in running her fitness empire — which includes a workout studio and on-demand classes, and most recently, teaching her signature classes at the Westin x Goop wellness experience. She explained how her publicist has dealt with client requests: “You can ask [Tracy] how to get Jennifer Lopez’s butt in three moves. You can ask her how to get Gwyneth Paltrow’s legs in three moves. She’s going to tell you that it can’t happen.” And she would know — Anderson has been a friend and trainer to Paltrow since 2006 and has also worked with Lopez, along with Kim Kardashian, Nicole Richie, and Victoria Beckham.
Instead, she hopes to shift how we approach fitness and inspire everyone to have honest conversations with themselves. “If you focus on wanting to be someone else, you’re going to completely miss the opportunity to be yourself. And I want you to focus on yourself. I want you to know who you are, what feels balanced, what doesn’t. I’m going to give you the tools to do that, but it has to be inwardly focused. It can’t be flipping through Instagram and magazines and going, ‘Look at that beautiful person; I want what they have.'”
This thinking is prevalent in her Tracy Anderson Method classes, where she famously doesn’t speak. She doesn’t yell at her students to work harder, nor does she provide empty motivational sayings. Rather, she stands at the front of the class and lets people follow her movements in their own way. It’s like a personalized fitness experience within a larger class setting. “The reason why I don’t speak to you during the class is because I don’t want to take from you,” says Anderson. “I don’t believe that I know how to move better in your body than you know how to move in your own. In fitness, I don’t believe in putting someone into form. I believe in form, but I want to help you journey through you to find your form.”
Anderson continues to evolve herself and her brand, but one thing that remains constant is her emphasis on self-love. The words she lives by are, “I value my life, I love myself, and I want to show up for myself honestly.” She encourages others to do the same by being the best version of themselves, not of anyone else. “I’m all for the uniqueness of everyone. I’m all for all different shapes and sizes as long as everyone is like, this is who I am, and this is going to be my journey to wellness in a healthy, balanced way. Shaming, judging, being in a race to become something that you’re not — those are unhealthy practices.”
What are your best tips for self-love? Share them with us @BritandCo.
(Photo via Nick Gerber)
Lesley Chen is a California native who writes about travel, health/fitness, and other lifestyle topics. She has a serious case of RBF and exercises mainly to balance out an aggressive candy addiction.