If there’s one thing we know about celebrities, it’s that they have an uncanny ability to tone up fast. Whether it’s trying to lose weight post-pregnancy, or building muscle mass for an upcoming movie, the secret weapon for reaching their fitness goals always comes down to one thing: A personal trainer. These trainers have a major impact on how successfully a celebrity can transform their body, but not everyone can afford one. So, we spoke with Don Saladino, celebrity trainer to stars like Blake Lively and Scarlett Johannson, about his secrets for toning up quickly—and his advice is a much more, well, doable, than we thought.
“First of all, I always tell my clients to increase sleep,” says Saladino. “I’ve increased peoples’ sleep by ninety minutes a night and they’ve instantaneously lost ten pounds in three weeks.” Sound too good to be true? Think again. Not only is sleep essential to repair muscles, it also balances the chemicals in your body that could ultimately affect your weight. “People don’t understand, they think they’re just going to work off the weight but hormonally, your body goes into the tank if you don’t sleep. Your hormones stop producing testosterone and growth hormones and your cortisol levels get thrown off which can actually lead to weight gain.”
But that’s not all. Saladino, who also recently became a Garden of Life brand advocate, believes that what you eat and drink is also essential for transforming your body. Other than using the Garden of Life SPORT Organic Plant-Based Recovery ($40) to ensure you’re healing from your workouts effectively, he advises cutting out three major kinds of food from your diet as well. “I’m really against flour and wheat,” explains Saladino. “When I’m trying to get someone leaner, the main things I remove from their diet is dairy, wheat, and sugar.”
However, the major lesson that Saladino reemphasizes to his clients is that recovery through sleep is the most influential change you can make in your routine. “If sleep isn’t dialed in, and you’re not getting seven to nine hours a night, it’s going to be very difficult to develop the physique you want.”