The fitness fanatic opens up to Now about how she’ll be spending Valentine’s Day – and spills the dirt on her boyfriend James Haskell’s grubbiest habits…
We’re always down for a chat with Chloe Madeley. Maybe it’s due to the fact that she’s got an insane amount of endorphins whizzing about that extra-toned body of hers– have you seen those rock-hard abs? – or perhaps it’s just because she’s one of the nicest celebs on the block.
When we sit down for a chat, Chloe’s super-talkative – and not just about herself. The 29-year-old asks us about what’s going on in the Now office and gives us fitness tips worth their weight in gold. There’s nothing she isn’t up for talking about and she’s particularly happy to open up about her relationship with rugby ace boyfriend James Haskell, 31.
It can’t always be easy being a rugby WAG – the sportsmen are notorious for boozing and naughty behaviour off the pitch with their mates – but Chloe tells us that she wants to marry James…
You’re looking amazing at the moment, Chloe. How hard are you training right now?
I took November and December off to eat whatever I wanted, but I still trained every day. Obviously, I gained a bit of weight as I was eating anything I fancied. So now I’m back on it, training really hard with heavy weights again for a shoot I have coming up and eating really clean again.
How did it feel to relax your diet for two months?
It was amazing – I really needed it! Last year I was in the best shape of my life. But then I got so used to training that my body got used to it and I wasn’t progressing any further – so I really needed a break with my diet, yet I still trained every day. I really recommend, for people who are trying to transform their body, taking some time off mentally and physically.
Your boyfriend James is a rugby player – he must love his food. Does he secretly like it when you fall off the wagon so you can go out and eat whatever you want together?
At the start of our relationship it was a bit of a sticking point. I used to say: ‘I can’t go out – I’m on a diet,’ and he used to reply: ‘That’s not my problem.’ I used to get upset when he ate spaghetti Bolognese and I couldn’t. And he was completely right, it wasn’t his problem – this is my choice, this is my job, this is my life.
How do you compromise with food as a couple?
I’m lucky because James doesn’t drink much – only really after a big game – which is beneficial for me. So instead of popping a bottle of wine each night, we’ll do the occasional wine tasting. James can’t cook – I cook everything for him! We go out to lovely restaurants, but it’s been a learning curve to stay on track with my diet when we do. I know how to eat out with James and stay on my diet. I know how to cook his favourite meals and simultaneously cook for myself. We choose the healthier option and it’s amazing now. We’ve got into our groove and it works.
How often do you have a cheat day with your food?
Even when I’m going for my diet 100 per cent like I am right now, I have a cheat night once a week. I’ll clear my schedule and we’ll totally vegetate, eating food, drinking wine, just enjoying doing nothing and not thinking about anything.
Have you ever worked out
with your parents Richard
I want to! But no, my parents don’t work out with me. My mum [Judy Finnigan] has dodgy knees so she’d have to be with a really good specialist in order to move and not injure herself any further. And my dad [Richard Madeley] has a really bad back.
Is it realistic for normal women to work out as much as you do? Surely it must take hours…
Yes, 100 per cent. I start my day with a 25 minute circuit that I do first thing before breakfast. You can also work out on your lunch time or after work – although I personally hate working out in the evening. I suppose I find it easier to put in the hours that I do because I’m a bit of a solitary person and I love doing my own thing. I’m not a party animal, so I have more time to dedicate to fitness.
Do you think young girls look
at you and think you have a body that’s unachievable?
Yes. I think a lot of people think my body’s unattainable and it drives me up the wall how achievable it actually is. I work at it every day and that’s how I’ve achieved my body. It has nothing to do with genetics – I’m not genetically gifted. I’m naturally a size 12.
How often do you work out
Never! On holiday, but that’s it. He could not train more differently than me. His training is so intense.
Boys are known for being a little bit gross. What’s the worst thing you’ve seen
I don’t know if it’s because he’s a rugby player, but he drops his wet towels onto the middle of the bedroom carpet and leaves them there. I come home from the gym and I can smell them and it makes the whole bedroom stink. It drives me mental!
Do the England squad have
any traditions or initiations if anyone messes up a game?
I have no idea. I try not to get into rugby life. I give James some alone time when he’s with his boys and I think he appreciates that.
What’s the most romantic thing James has ever done for you?
I got lucky with James – he’s such a romantic. He does loads of things that make me really happy. He left me a note by the bed the other day before leaving [the house], which left me smiling for days. And when I’m ill, he’ll buy me my favourite food or he’ll cook and bring it up to me with a bunch of flowers on a tray. Stuff like that just makes me think: ‘I got lucky.’
Do you think he’s the man
I do, yeah.
Do you talk about the future?
No, we don’t. We’re both focused on the right now. He’s just had a big operation, so he’s getting fit again. And my business is taking off. I’m not worried about marriage or engagement. However, do I see myself being with James for ever? A hundred per cent.
It seems like you’re the
There’s no real drama with us. It’s just love – we love each other and that’s really nice.
What’s been your best Valentine’s Day?
I don’t think I’ve ever had a proper Valentine’s Day with James. I’m not that kind of girl. I’ll buy the lingerie and do the whole red corset thing, but I’m not going to buy tacky cards or anything.
What’s your favourite part of James’ body?
I love his shoulders. I have a particular way that I sleep – it involves me crawling onto his shoulder and snuggling on the sides of it. When he goes away, I can’t sleep because I miss his shoulders.
How does he prefer your body? Do you ever discuss it?
I’m really lucky with James. I can get into a killer shape and he loves it. And I can wear a hoodie and he loves it. I can’t lose with him.
Does he mind you showing your body on Instagram?
He found me on Instagram, so he can’t complain! But there is a line. I did a topless photo shoot once and he said: ‘No, I don’t want you to do that.’ I considered telling him to f**k off and then I remembered that I’m his girlfriend and that kind of thing is hard for him.
Do you ever get embarrassed that your parents see
No, because they don’t see my pictures! They aren’t on Instagram. My dad hardly knows how to use his own computer.
What do you think of reality stars who release fitness DVDs?
I talked about this in a recent interview and I’m really angry because my words got twisted. I want to be really clear now: I love and respect a lot of the girls who’ve released those DVDs, like Davina McCall and Vicky Pattison. They’re both friends of mine and they worked hard to get into shape and they deserve credit and respect for changing their bodies. The problem I have is with the press culture in the UK, where celebrities gain weight and get papped with food all over their faces. It encourages a feeling of shame, and then they do a workout DVD while they’re on a juice diet. Health and fitness is about your mental, emotional and physical health. It’s the industry at fault and if people stop buying these DVDs it will go away.
Chloe’s e-book Eat Clean, Get Lean is available to buy now from iBooks and Google Books