With five films in the works, including Rock of Ages out in June, and a new ABC TV series debuting in the fall, Malin Akerman is one of Hollywood’s most sought-after actresses. She opens up to SHAPE about how she had to step up her diet and fitness routine before slipping on a bikini for this photo shoot.
On her fix-it list: I’m not going to lie: I was born with good genes [her mother was also a model]. But when I overindulge, I can get a paunch in my belly. And I’ve always wished I had more beef in my booty.
On her diet plan: I’ve never been on a fad diet or tried one of those crazy cleanses. I think they just mess up your system. I believe in eating as nutritiously as I can all the time—not just before I’m putting on a swimsuit. My mother raised me on fresh—rather than processed—foods, and that’s how I eat on a regular basis.
On her indulgences: I have my splurges. I can’t live without chocolate. Though I barely consider it an indulgence because it’s good for you. I also love a thick steak and French fries. I try not to eat them more than once a week, but if they somehow land on the table in front of me, I won’t hold back . You’ve got to allow yourself the things you enjoy or you’ll just be miserable.
On her exercise routine: I prefer exercising in or near my home. I usually start my day doing some yoga poses and then go for a 45-minute hike in the park nearby. It’s hard to be consistent because of my schedule. There are days I only have time to do a few sets of crunches and push-ups in my living room or 10 minutes of jumping jacks. But no matter what, I try to do something each day.
On kissing Tom Cruise: The script called for the tonguiest tongue kiss of all time. And we were like, ‘Let’s go for it.’ It was hilarious. Working with Tom was a dream come true. I can die happy now.
On how she’s feeling these days: I’ve learned that whether you’re stepping in front of the camera or slipping on your first bikini of the season, it’s not how you look but how you present yourself to the world.