If you've caught an episode of The Real Housewives of Atlanta lately, then surely you're familiar with Kenya Moore. This former beauty queen has shown an edgier, gone-with-the-wind-fabulous side of herself on the show, and is now turning her reality TV fame into dollar signs with the release of her Booty Boot Camp workout DVD. We caught up with Moore to get the scoop how she keeps those dangerous curves of hers and what really happened with the whole donkey booty/stallion booty face-off.
ESSENCE: Tell me a little bit about why you created Booty Boot Camp and what went into the making of the video.
Kenya Moore: I wanted to have the best possible routines and exercises that’ll give you results. I know what worked for me throughout the years but I wanted to get the help of an expert. Working with an actual trainer who made sure the exercises were effective and working the body parts we were targeting was important to me. I’m very happy with the results and trust me, I had to do the routine multiple times in a day. I literally could not walk for a week.
ESSENCE: Black women are curvy by nature, so what would your advice be to the curvy girls on why it's important to tone up? Women might think “I look good already,” but why do they need to still get that Booty Boot Camp going?
Moore: My workout video is not just to help you tone, it’s to help you burn fat, lift, and maintain your figure if you’re already curvy. One thing that I’ve noticed is that black women tend to not want to exercise because they think, Yes, I have these natural curves, I look good, I don’t need to do anything — but working out is beneficial to your health, your self-esteem and the way that you look, so you need to work out. You should want to work out because it has so many great factors and it’s heart healthy. One of the number one killers of women is heart disease, so you have to take care of your heart. In addition to that, when you are curvy and you have these natural curves, you can lose them. Fat on your body turns into flab very quickly, especially when you turn a certain age. If you’ve had children your body changes. It will not stay the same way for the rest of your life so you have to make an effort to keep it that way, and if you have curvy hips and a nice voluptuous body, that can all change very quickly. For me it’s been about maintenance. As time changes your body, you need to adjust your workout to compensate for that.
ESSENCE: Exactly. You look amazing for your age. What are your secrets to staying trim, curvy and gorgeous?
Moore: I take care of my body from the inside, out. I eat pretty well but I also eat whatever I want. I just eat in smaller quantities and I eat many meals throughout the day. Instead of three meals a day I probably eat six, but they’re all small portions so it increases your metabolism as you get older. Of course I added a lot more vegetables to my diet and more nutritious meals that are probably more geared toward protein. The biggest thing that I can say is in terms of physically looking a certain way, you have to work out. You have to move your body. A lot of times people will tell you 30 minutes a day. I try to do an hour. Maybe Sunday I don’t do a whole lot but that could mean me taking a walk in the park, hiking a mountain. It could mean me boxing. I try to vary my exercises so I don’t get bored.
ESSENCE: I have to ask you, because there’s been some talk on the blogs about whose video came first — Phaedra's donkey booty or your stallion booty. What’s your take on the issue?
Moore: First of all, I’m a person who’s worked out my entire life. I think if you go back, like, I don’t even know how many years, even to Miss USA, I’ve got well-documented interviews that state I take my exercise very seriously. So in terms of putting that into an actual DVD, initially I had been speaking to someone else on the show regarding a workout DVD and it didn’t work, but one of the things that prompted me to do my own video was when I spoke to my amazing distributor. I had initially reached out to them about another client and the first thing they asked me was, “Are you in it?” They recognized me for being a curvy girl who stays in shape and I’ve been on countless magazine covers and fitness articles have been done about me, so I came from that sort of branding, that fitness branding and being physically fit as an example of how I live my life. For me the difference primarily is that my fitness regimen has been a way of life, it’s not a gimmick.
ESSENCE.com: So that conflict with you and Phaedra, where did it come from?
Moore: It’s a long story about her not respecting me as a producer and me just being able to make a business decision to move on and move forward. I produced my own video. I didn’t hire another production company. What you see is Moore Vision Media as the production company, so that’s what I’m capable of. I’m really excited to be able to produce another project under my production company.
ESSENCE: What’s next for you? What other boot camps can we get?
Moore: Hopefully this one is very successful and I’ll be able to do a series and expand it to fitness wear. I also like to look good when I’m working out and I like the certain lines and colors and I haven’t been able to find one particular company that has the kind of clothes that I like to wear. I’m also working on my own hair care line, so I’m excited about that too.
Booty Boot Camp is available at Amazon, $8.49.