Amanda Holden, 41, reveals the secret behind her slim figure and how baby Hollie helps her tone up
She endured a traumatic spell in intensive care following the birth of her daughter Hollie but, seven months later, Amanda Holden has bounced back and looks better than ever. When we point out how well she’s looking, she giggles, saying: “Team Mandy has been around this morning!”
The 5ft 4 presenter credits a good diet and years of dancing and gymnastic training for her svelte 8st figure – but she also admits to taking tips from self-confessed health freak Simon Cowell. The pair have been firm friends since first working together on Britain’s Got Talent in 2007.
“One thing I absolutely love is his special tea,” she says. “It’s basically hot water with so much fresh ginger, it rips off the back of your throat! It feels like it’s purifying your system and doing loads of good. Although, Simon will then nip off for a cigarette!”
She likes his tea, but has Amanda been tempted to try the infamous intravenous vitamin drips Simon uses?
'Simon drinks these weird concoctions that look like gren slime, but I give them a wide berth'
“No! If you eat the right things, then you don’t need that. He also drinks these weird concoctions that look like green slime, but I give them a wide berth,” she laughs.
Amanda, who’s married to music producer Chris Hughes, 38, also refuses to follow faddy diets. She says: “I don’t see the point of them. Besides, I’m so grateful to my body after what it has been through, it doesn’t seem fair to deprive it.”
The TV presenter was left fighting for her life earlier this year, when she suffered a massive haemorrhage following a C-section with her second daughter. Thankfully, baby Hollie was healthy, but Amanda’s heart stopped for 40 seconds and she was put under a general anaesthetic as doctors gave her an emergency blood transfusion. Afterwards, she lost her appetite and, as a result, quickly lost some of the 1st she’d gained during her pregnancy.
“It was a tough time. There was a lot of trauma and I didn’t eat for the three days I was in intensive care,” she recalls.
Thankfully, Amanda, who’s also mum to Lexi, six, is now back to full strength after returning to her healthy vegetarian diet. She says she’s ∂st off her pre-pregnancy weight of 8st and reveals she even uses baby Hollie as a weight, to help her tone her bingo wings!
“I lift her up to do chest presses and tricep lifts,” she laughs. “My tummy is wobblier since having Hollie, but I don’t care. I’m just so grateful to my body for actually being here and giving me two lovely children. My boobs have gone up from a 34B to a 34C too, which is a bonus!”
Amanda, 41, maintains her size 8-10 shape with a healthy vegetarian diet and weekly six-mile runs near her £4m west London home. She also does hourly sessions with personal trainer Gareth Traves when she can fit them into her work schedule. He puts her through her paces with running, skipping, stomach crunches and press-ups.
'I sometimes struggle to find enough time, but I love the way exercise makes me feel'
“I sometimes struggle to find enough time, but I love the way exercise makes me feel,” she says. “As a mum, it’s a great way to carve out an hour for yourself.”
She also takes Hollie and Lexi swimming with Chris. The couple take it in turns to do laps, while the other looks after the children.
Amanda’s typical diet consists of cereal and fruit for breakfast, plus two coffees – which she describes as “mummy fuel” – a salad wrap for lunch and veggie sausages with vegetables for dinner. Snacks include Danone’s Oykos yoghurts, for which she is a brand ambassador.
Amanda reveals she ate what she liked during her pregnancies – although her cravings with Hollie (watermelon) and Lexi (tuna) were relatively healthy. She also says her low weight gain meant she didn’t need to wear baggy maternity clothes, explaining: “I wore elasticised or size 12 clothes, which I’ve passed on to my mum.”
Amanda has admitted to having Botox in the past, but is giving it a rest for now, though she wouldn’t rule out having more. However, she insists a facelift is off the agenda.
She explains: “I have a keloid skin – which means I scar easily. I’d be too frightened to do anything to my face in case it left a mark.”
Now filming has finished for Jesus Christ Superstar, which she presented, and with a new series of BGT due to start next January, it’s full steam ahead for Amanda. So, how does she relax?
“I’ll sometimes have a glass of rosé in the evening,” she says. “I always drink it with ice to dilute it. Chris hardly drinks, which leaves me feeling like Sue Ellen from Dallas, so the melted ice is perfect for if I pour myself another one!”