Star Tracks: Monday, May 16, 2016 42 years, 2,191 covers and 55,436 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- The Best Drinks to Order from the Starbucks Secret Menu
- Read the Cover Story: Mystery in Idaho: Little Boy Lost
- Missing 2-Year-old DeOrr Kunz's Father on Life Without His Son: 'I Don't Know if Life Is Worth Living'
- Fresh Start, New Home: Megan Fox and Brian Austin Green Are Back Together and Ready For Baby No. 3, Source Says
- The Best July 4th Sales on Clothes, Shoes, Jewelry and More
On Newsstands Now
- Matthew McConaughey: In His Own Words
- Jessa Duggar's Wedding Album
- Brittany Maynard's Final Days
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- June 27, 2011
- Vol. 75
- No. 25
American Idol's Jordin Sparks: 'How I Lost 30 Lbs.'
The Former Size-14 Pop Star Tells How She Got Her 'Sexier' New Figure
When Jordin Sparks first hit the American Idol stage in 2007, at age 17 and size 14, she flinched at the thought of wearing anything sleeveless. "I like to wear sleeves because they cover up my arms," she told PEOPLE at the time. Fast-forward to 2011, and a more confident Sparks has no trouble revealing much more than her arms: In February she stepped out in a sexy black backless dress. "I wore it without Spanx!" Sparks says. "I was so excited." And now, after losing 30 lbs. in four months, Sparks has gone even farther-revealing her new trim, size-8 figure in her first-ever bikini photo shoot. "Before, if I were to wear a bikini, it would just be in front of my mom or really close friends with a coverup," says the pop star, who credits eating smaller portions and taking Zumba, the popular Latin dance-inspired cardio class, for her "sexier" silhouette. "I feel good! I love that I still have my curves. I definitely didn't want to lose those," she says, adding, "I don't want to lose more weight. I just want to tone. I'm in a really good place now."
When the 5'11" Sparks left Glendale, Ariz., where she grew up, for Los Angeles to compete on Idol, she quickly realized, "Hollywood large is so different than real-life large. Everyone was so much smaller than me. I looked massive next to Ryan Seacrest! But I was lucky that I've never had anyone say, 'Jordin, you need to lose weight.' And it wasn't because I didn't like myself that I wanted to change."
The real impetus came before her 21st birthday last December, when Sparks came down with pneumonia and decided that "I couldn't take my health for granted anymore." She started going on hikes and doing 30 minutes of high-impact cardio before getting hooked on taking hour-long Zumba classes up to five times a week at Gold's Gym. "The weight just fell off," says her instructor Nichet Smith. "She crossed over from a teen into a woman." Next Sparks changed her eating habits (see box). If her mom whips up her famous sweet potato casserole, Sparks now limits herself to one serving instead of two, and "I decided not to eat for two hours before I go to bed," she says. Now when she checks out her reflection in the mirror (usually in outfits that are "a little bit tighter and a little shorter"), Sparks says, "I see the change in my face and neck." Others are noticing too. "I'm standing up a little bit straighter because guys are staring," she says. "I'm loving it."
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!