Brooke Burke-Charvet slides into a seat at an oceanfront café in Malibu and apologizes for being several minutes late. Long spa appointment? Leisurely breakfast in bed? Hardly. "I'm coming from teaching my fitness class, Booty Burn," she says, as she fans her slightly flushed face. "It's fun, but my whole concept is that we work to fatigue."
Clearly, this woman knows how to push herself. Never mind that the mother of four (she has two daughters from her first marriage and a son and daughter with her actor husband David Charvet) is a multihyphenate: author-model-entrepreneur-tireless Tweeter (up to eight times a day). This month, Brooke, 42, unveils a new line of chic activewear she developed for women of all shapes and sizes. Oh, and she just got her official certification as a group fitness instructor.
Check out this video of our cover shoot with Brooke Burke-Charvet!
It's enough to make your head spin—and glutes seize up—until this gorgeous working mom sighs and confides: "Look, I did not feel like working out today. But when you're the teacher, you have to show up!" Over a plate of quinoa and grilled salmon, Brooke candidly tells all, from facing thyroid cancer at 41 to finding time to act like a teenager with her husband.
So what inspired you to design your fitness-wear line, Caelum?
I think that women need to feel good when they're working out. A lot of performance fabrics are so contouring that they cut you in the wrong places. Caelum—it means chisel in Latin—flatters different body types. For instance, we did a three-way waistline on our pants so you can wear them high, low or folded over.
How did you start teaching Booty Burn?
I wanted to experiment with real women and see how far I could push them, what works, how their bodies were going to change, what was hard enough, what was too hard. I started out two years ago with a couple of friends who brought a couple of friends, and it became this really great group of women.
What do you get out of leading a fitness class?
I get twice the workout when I'm teaching. And I love seeing the women support each other and transform. I do it every Sunday faithfully and a couple of days a week if I'm not working.
Booty Burn aside, how often do you work out? What's your M.O.?
Three to five times a week for an hour. I mix it up, but I always work past the burn. I believe if you're not sweating, you're not working out hard enough. My ab workouts are 20 minutes and sometimes I don't need more than that. I like to try new yoga or barre classes, and I do Pilates Plus faithfully, too.
Do you try crazy fad diets?
I did a lot of them. I used to weigh my food. I used to measure my food. I used to work way too hard at dieting and spend way too much time at the gym.
I believe in portion control. I eat a Mediterranean diet. I have meat, fish. Lots of vegetables. We never skip breakfast. I don't buy a lot of packaged foods.