Zoe Saldana came close to mental breakdown while filming her upcoming action film, Colombiana. The afro-Latina star of the highest-grossing film of all-time, Avatar, opened up to Latina regarding her whirlwind of a year after Avatar’s release and how it led to exhaustion.
“I was in Paris training for Colombiana, sitting in my hotel room, and I couldn’t stop crying. I couldn’t stay awake. I must have slept for an entire month. It took me the rest of the year, even as I was working and shooting Colombiana, to pick myself up. Thank God my family was there.”
This revelation by Zoe is in stark contrast to her article in September’s Women’s Health Magazine, where the stunning actress tells how she stays in shape for roles like Avatar and Colombiana.
The Dominican actress is in high spirits for her interview, exclaiming that she loves her new femme-fatale roles and “relishes the chance to kick butt.”
One cannot help but notice, though, Zoe is very thin, almost unbelievable for person in her roles in action movies. Taking into account that film and/or photography puts weight on a person, Zoe seems like she is perfect size for Hollywood but a tad light in reality. But, to be fair, we are creatures of habit, and walking around American streets one can get used to an overweight population–where people with normal Body Mass Indexes (BMI) look a little famished. But, you be the judge…
Fortunately, Zoe proclaims her love for vegetables — her pre-red-carpet meal consists of fibrous vegetables in order to knock out her cravings for — wait for it — elk meat! Not good, but, hey, she will hopefully find vegetables a little more appealing as she grows older, and the elk meat clogs up her digestive tract.
“I think drinking tons of water is really crucial and I love lentils with some vegetables and greens. Healthy eating and indulging in comfort foods in moderation is my motto.”
Check out a snippet of Zoe’s workout tips that you’ll find in the latest Women’s Health Magazine — some of these are very interesting.
Change Up Your Cardio:
Zoe began with 30 minutes on the treadmill: five minutes at a comfortable walk, 15 minutes of jogging, then two minutes of running as fast as she could.
For another challenge, Zoe’s stunt coordinator Garrett Warren would have her walk while doing shoulder presses with two- pound weights.
Zoe also did 20 to 30-minute sessions on a stair-climber and an upright bike. “She wasn’t allowed to go below 90 rpms on the bike,” says Warren. “The faster you pull your knees up to your chest, the harder a workout your abs get.”
Do Balance Work:
It’s one of the best ways to strengthen your core. Part of the drill incorporates a stability ball, which Zoe used for stomach crunches and push-ups. Or she’d balance herself in a plank position, resting her forearms on the ball and holding the position for 30 seconds. “It forces you to use your abdominal muscles,” says Warren. Next came stints on the balance board, lifting weights or doing squats.
Up The Weight Training:
Zoe wanted to get strong but not overly muscular, so the weights varied. She might do biceps curls and triceps extensions with five-pounders, then up the ante by doing deadlifts with 15-pound weights. (When you try this, aim to do three sets of 12 to 20 reps.) How to get the most from this move: “Keep your legs straight or slightly bent, but make sure they’re as stiff as they can be,” says Warren. “Use the muscles in your lower back and stomach—along with your glutes—to lift the weights.”
Try A Martial Art:
Martial arts are great total-body workouts because they entail all styles of exercise. Zoe used three types to develop eye-hand coordination for her fight scenes: Krav Maga (a method of self- defense developed for the Israeli army) and Kali and Eskrima (two Filipino martial arts that employ hand-to-hand combat techniques). “They’re all about being able to maneuver quickly by throwing elbows, blocking, and punching,” says Warren.