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Ciara, SHAPE Magazine

SHAPE

Ciara might have the hottest post-baby body in Hollywood.

The editors at Shape magazine certainly think so, as they chose the "Dance Like We're Making Love" singer to be their September cover girl! Nearly 15 months after the birth of her son, the 29-year-old musician admits she continued to gain weight after his arrival.

"When I was pregnant with Future [Jr.], one thing I learned quickly was, don't ever let a pregnant lady be hungry, because when I was, I was like the Tasmanian Devil! I indulged in all the good food the world has to offer," Ciara says.

"After he was born—when I couldn't exercise yet—I kept eating, and I gained 60 pounds. But as soon as the doctor said I could start training again, I was on the treadmill the very next day. Once I got back into it, I worked out two or three times daily. I would go to [trainer Gunnar Peterson] first for my one-hour training session, then I'd have two more cardio sessions later in the day," Ciara continues. "That, along with a really clean eating plan, was how I lost 60 pounds in four months. It was a very intense program, and I was extremely focused on it."

Ciara, SHAPE Magazine

SHAPE

Like many people trying to lose weight, Ciara struggles with sticking to a diet. As such, she allows a few cheats. "When I'm on a strict eating regimen, at some point I have to have French fries, a cheeseburger and some pizza. And Oreos and vanilla ice cream! I also believe that drinking tons of water and flushing out your system is crucial for training. It really helped me drop the weight," she says. "I tell myself that water is my medicine and that to stay well, I have to drink a gallon of it every day."

How does the diva stop herself from overeating?

Ciara, SHAPE Magazine

SHAPE

"I have a mantra: 'The food isn't going anywhere,'" Ciara tells Shape. "You know those days when you think you have to have a plate of pasta right now? When I'm trying to be good, I take a minute to ask myself, 'Do you really need to eat all this crazy stuff? It will still be around if you want it later.'"

Ciara, SHAPE Magazine

SHAPE

As for her workouts, Ciara says, "Gunnar puts me through an hour-long plyometric cardio circuit that always includes boxing elements. What's amazing is that you're getting three-in-one training: It's hitting your muscles; it's a cardiovascular workout; and it's a mental exercise. You have to be super focused when you're boxing. After I've done a few rounds, I feel as if I can conquer the world."