Dancing With the Stars will shimmy its way back to our TV screens on March 19, which means there's a brand-new crop of celebs who will be competing for that mirror-ball trophy. So who can you expect to be rooting for when the show returns? Season 14 offers up the standard mixed bag of athletes, musicians, and personalities, so take a look at who's ready to show off their moves.
Iraq veteran and former soap star JR Martinez, 28, won over America and the judges to bring home the trophy on Dancing With the Stars last night. But it's clear from his positive attitude and resilience that JR was a winner before the competition even started. Here are five things to know about the guy we'll hopefully be seeing more of.
- JR Was only 19 when he was injured while serving in Iraq as a Humvee driver in 2003. His vehicle hit a land mine, and he was burned on more than 40 percent of his body. JR has undergone 33 different surgeries, including cosmetic procedures and skin graphs, since his injury.
- JR began working as a motivational speaker back in 2004. He's talked to audiences at the Clinton Global Initiative, colleges and universities, and for the US Army, covering topics including optimism and body acceptance. JR also appeared on Oprah and 60 Minutes.
- In 2008, he joined the cast of All My Children in the role of combat veteran Brot Monroe. The soap had put out a casting call hoping to find a real-life veteran for the role, and JR got the part.
- JR's mother is from El Salvador, and he is fluent in both Spanish and English. After winning last night, JR said, "I kept feeling someone tugging on my suspenders. It was my 4-foot-11 mom. I just kissed her and hugged her. I said, 'Can you believe that eight and a half years ago, you were teaching me how to walk?'"
- While JR will likely have more speaking appearances and acting roles lined up after his win, he's made it clear he's also dedicated to helping other vets. He recently helped get a new home for a fellow Iraq vet who lost his eye sight and leg and suffered burns on 60 percent of his body.
Another season of Dancing With the Stars is behind us, with J.R. Martinez taking home the coveted mirror-ball trophy this time around. It seemed like Martinez had it in the bag from the start: not only did he have the moves, but he captured the hearts of audiences with his winning personality and inspiring backstory. Runners-up Ricki Lake and Rob Kardashian still gave it their all, though, so maybe you had your eye on a different contestant. Tell us — do you agree with the winner of Dancing With the Stars?
Photo copyright 2011 ABC, Inc.
Most of the Kardashian family came out to watch Rob perform his cha-cha with partner Cheryl Burke on Dancing With the Stars in LA last night. Kim was joined by her husband, Kris Humphries, while Khloé had her one-and-only, Lamar Odom on her arm. Kris and Bruce Jenner were in the audience cheering on Rob, as Kim was busy cooking up a voting scheme for her younger brother. Kim Kardashian tweeted to fans, "OMG I have @JustinBieber 's phone #!!!! 800 8683402! CALL HIM! He's taking calls for the next hour!!!!" and later followed up with, "Ok guys obviously I'm joking, that's not Justin's #! But seriously call & vote for @RobKardashian & @CherylBurke 800 8683402!!! Xoxo." Kim famously competed on the show in 2008 so she knows the importance of votes; however, Rob may be out of harm's way after scoring a solid 22 for his latest routine. Fellow contestant Hope Solo might be on the chopping block tonight following a heated exchange between her dance partner, Maksim Chmerkovskiy, and head judge Len Goodman. Len commented that Maksim and Hope put out the "worst dance of the season" to which Maksim replied with "maybe it's time to go! [retire]" in regards to Goodman's 50 plus years in entertainment.
Known for her spunky attitude as both Tracy Turnblad in the original movie Hairspray and her 11-year stint as a daytime talk show host, Ricki Lake, 43, is no stranger to weight issues. A few years ago, she dropped 140 pounds off her 270-pound frame, and although she might have gained some back, Dancing With the Stars is whipping her back into shape.
Ricki told Ellen DeGeneres on her show that airs today, "I lost more than 13 inches in a month. It's crazy." She's dropped about 15 pounds so far, and that includes five inches from her waist and five from her hips. She owes it all to her dance partner, Derek Hough, who encourages her to move more, boasting that, "The Derek Hough diet is the best. It's hardcore." She adds,
"[DWTS pros and execs] say it's the hardest thing you will ever do and you're like, 'Yeah, yeah, yeah. I've done hard: I had my baby in my bathtub at home' and yet we work out all day long. We are sweating all over each other!"
Ricki Lake told US weekly, "I am really getting in great shape. I will be wearing less and less clothing the smaller I get. I am feeling more comfortable in my own skin."
Like DWTS alums Kelly Osbourne and Kirstie Alley, it's amazing to watch someone slim down right before our eyes. I'm rooting for Ricki, hoping she's able to stay on the show week after week, shaking her booty and shedding those pounds.
Photo courtesy of ABC
"A bit top heavy at times," is how judge Bruno Tonioli described Nancy Grace's performance on Dancing With the Stars last night. Rumor has it that Nancy's costume couldn't contain her cleavage as she finished her number last night. As host Tom Bergeron explained, "On the European version that would be perfectly fine." Not so much in America.
The cable news anchor herself denies any slip, saying "There was a little tiny movement, but it did not equate to a wardrobe malfunction." But just based on the editing, something seemed up. ABC cut away to a silent audience, while we could still hear them cheering, and if you pay attention, it definitely looks as if her dress fails her for a split second. Still, the edit meant TV audiences were spared from seeing more than a quick glimpse.
What do you make of it?
Season 13 of Dancing With the Stars kicks off in less than two weeks, and it is already shaping up to be a very competitive and entertaining season. It's no surprise that this show seems to whip most of the contestants into amazing shape thanks to the five or more hours of training each day. Here are some noteworthy celebs that were inspired to stay fit and healthy after their ballroom days were over.
Ahh love. Finding that special person makes life so much better, but unfortunately falling head over heels can make you fall off the healthy wagon. Season 13 Dancing With the Stars contestant Ricki Lake has always been very public about her weight issues, and she shares with Us Weekly:
"I fell in love last year . . . I didn't gain a lot of weight but I feel like I could lose about 15 pounds. I'm going to be careful. It's going to be weird, because having dealt with weight issues my whole life and you think deprivation, starving yourself — but I can't do that if I'm dancing six hours a day. I'm just going to be really conscious of it. For the first time it won't be about the pounds, it'll be about strength and my body. I'm up for the challenge."
When you first meet someone, you spend so much time together that you tend to skip out on your workouts. Plus you go out to eat a lot, share bottles of wine and plates of strawberry cheesecake, and chow down on takeout in front of a movie — no wonder your jeans feel tight. It doesn't help that you feel so comfortable and loved by the person that you think, "Why work out when he loves me no matter what size I am?" I guess it depends on the relationship and how strong-willed you are when it comes to sticking to your healthy ways, but like Ricki, do relationships cause you to gain weight? If so, tell us in the comments how you got back on track.
The new cast of Dancing With the Stars has just been revealed, and as usual, it's an eclectic group of actors, reality stars, and other personalities. From David Arquette to Chaz Bono to Nancy Grace, check out all the stars who will be swiveling their hips when the 13th season starts on Sept. 19.
We are excited to share one of our fave stories from Shape here on FitSugar.
As one of the world’s most well-known, talented, and admired professional ballroom dancers, not only does Kym Johnson rock it on the dance floor, but she also has one rock-hard body.
If you’ve caught any of the past nine seasons of ABC’s Dancing with the Stars (I admit, I’m a total DWTS addict), you’ve most likely noticed the Aussie starlet’s incredibly toned, strong, amazing body in her super-sexy costumes.
Johnson was inspired to become a professional dancer from watching old MGM musicals with the likes of Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, and Cyd Charisse. "I have been dancing since I was three and I can’t imagine my life without dance," says Johnson. "I feel so happy when I’m dancing, and I am so lucky to have a career doing something I love so much."
With three mirror ball trophies under her belt, her love and passion for dance is clearly emulated with every cha-cha-cha, waltz, and quickstep forward. It’s easy to see why America falls in love time and time again with the gorgeous dancer; one hot-step onto the DWTS dance floor and you just can’t take your eyes off her.
Dancing is a great total body workout because, "you burn so many calories and tone your entire body without realizing you are working out because you’re having too much fun," says Johnson.
Aside from dancing her way to a rockin’ body, what else does Johnson do to stay in such phenomenal shape? See some fun fitness facts you may or may not know about the charismatic dancing star after the break!