Michelle Monaghan covers Shape: ‘I love my body so much, it’s amazing’

Do any of you watch Hulu’s The Path? It’s in its second season and centers around a Scientology-type cult called the Meyerists (except they’re more of a hippie cult as they use drugs and were founded in the 60s) with high ranking members Michelle Monaghan, evil new leader Hugh Dancy and the incredible Aaron Paul as Michelle’s estranged husband who is questioning the cult. (He’s a “denier” in their cult speak.) I’m not in love with the show, but I do enjoy it and keep watching because the performances are so good and I want to know what happens. The good thing about Hulu is that you can’t binge watch if you’re current on the shows because they release one episode a week.

Anyway Monaghan covers Shape magazine, it’s hard to recognize her with so little makeup but she looks gorgeous. In the interview I really enjoyed everything she said about her body and how she appreciates it and enjoys exercise. She’s not faux humble, she loves her body because it’s capable, she’s into fitness and she loves it for the mental benefits, which I can definitely relate to. She enjoys running and it shows. They put her in all these 70s styles on The Path like flouncy floral blouses, high-waisted pants and bell bottoms and she just rocks those frumpy styles she’s so tall and slender. Here are the excerpts from Monaghan’s interview with Shape. She’s promoting not only The Path but her films Patriots Day (with Mark Wahlberg, about the Boston marathon bombing) and Sleepless (a thriller with Jamie Foxx).

On being mentally tough:
“Confidence comes naturally to me now, but I think it’s something you grow into. There are a number of things that gave me confidence over the years: going to college and writing my first rent check for $550, auditioning for and getting that first acting job. Reaching those kinds of goals gives you confidence to tackle new challenges. So when you have a setback, you think, It’s OK. I’m going to recover from this.”

On celebrating her body for what it can do:
“I love my shape because I know what it’s capable of—running 13 miles, having two children, and learning to surf. I love my body so much; it’s profoundly amazing. I have enormous gratitude for it.”

On the healthy things she just won’t eat:
“I have never liked fruit. To make up for it, I have a green juice every morning, which is totally devoid of fruit but has tons of vitamins from vegetables. A typical day of eating for me is eggs or oatmeal for breakfast, soup or salad for lunch, and fish or meat and lots of veggies for dinner.”

On her love for cheese:
“I don’t have a sweet tooth; I have a savory tooth. There are six or seven cheese in my fridge at all times. My idea of snacking is putting cheeses on a platter with prosciutto and crackers and sitting in front of it and stuffing my face.”

On how she sets an example of positive body image for her daughter:
“When I’m not shooting, I aim to work out at least three times a week … On shoot days, I start at about five in the morning and don’t get home until seven at night, so it’s hard to find time for exercise. I throw myself a bone and don’t get too worried about it. I know that when I have time again, I can kick it up a notch. I also need to be an example for my daughter. That means I can’t run around worried about what I look like. We’re active together as a family—the kids go hiking and biking with us. But I don’t obsess about what I eat.”

On why exercise is for her brain as much as her body:
“I get crabby when I don’t work out. Just ask my husband! [Laughs.] I really depend on exercising to relieve stress. Last week, I was overwhelmed and I thought, I need to go for a run or a hike to clear my head. I had a to-do list that was a mile long, and I didn’t know what to tackle first. When I run, it helps put everything into place.

“Years ago, when I started working out, it was about getting my body in shape. But now the mental benefits outweigh the physical ones. That’s why I love going for a hike in the morning. There’s something about climbing a mountain that’s symbolic—you set your intention and what you want to focus on. I think about what I have to do today or what I have to accomplish this week. It allows me that space where there’s no one else around.”

On how her Midwestern roots keep her going:
“I run a half marathon every year with Maria, my best friend from my hometown in Iowa. I’ve known her since I was a kid. We usually do races in different cities, so we’ll make a weekend out of it. It’s great because there are days when I have to do an eight-mile run, and I’ll get a text from Maria saying, ‘I did eight miles! Did you do yours?’ Training with her helps motivate and encourage me.”

[From Shape]

I’m like that with exercise, I really need it or I start to get grumpy. I’ve found that the harder I work out the better I feel so I’ve been trying to challenge myself and it helps. In the full interview Monaghan says that along with running she also does kickboxing, pilates and Soulcycle, which she compares to going to church. I’ve been getting back into spinning lately with RPM classes and it’s such a good workout I love it. For kickboxing I do Body Combat, also from Les Mills. (I subscribe to their on demand workouts but my local YMCA has them too.) Also, Monaghan looks amazing in these photos from Shape. I thought she was in her mid 30s but she’s 40, I wouldn’t have guessed.




Photos are credit ©Arthur Belebeau/SHAPE magazine

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37 Responses to “Michelle Monaghan covers Shape: ‘I love my body so much, it’s amazing’”

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  1. Locke Lamora says:

    She does sound lovely , but I never believe the whole “I love my body for what it’s capable for” from Hollywood people, especially considering most of them wouldn’t have a job if they didn’t look the way they look, no matter the talent.
    And I do know that everyone has their own issues, but is it really hard to love your body when you fit the ideal to a t the way Michelle does?

    • Nina says:

      Yeah…I can’t help but roll my eyes whenever a size 2 celebrity talks about how much she loves her body.

      • detritus says:

        Ok, thank god. This stuff makes me retch.

        Whenever some very hot, thin and conventionally framed girl, who would be the prettiest girl in her town if it wasn’t LA, tells me to love my imperfections it makes me all Hulk mad.

        This woman is stupid beautiful, so yes, she should love her body. Not saying everyone does when they are beautiful, but she knows she beautiful. That’s why she gets work in Hollywood.

        Someone, please, say words about this that make sense. I’m too annoyed. Kerr, Christie, Duff and her shopped thighs. It’s not inspiring, it’s maddening.

      • Eleonort says:

        Same here.
        I roll my eyes to every 0 sized celebrity who talks about body acceptance and “love your body”, works out 24/7 use photoshop, fake implants etc. etc.

      • Nina says:

        Detritus and Eleonort – Seriously! Body acceptance endorsements from teeny women who are paid to look beautiful and are stupid rich enough to hire the best trainers and nutritionists just make me want to reach for the Lindors.

      • Taiss says:

        Not just the size 2. Even the bigger ones, they’ll say how much they love their bodies blah blah blah. Then they loose all the weight, and do a naked photo shoot, to tell us that they weren’t really happy back then.

      • Nina says:

        @Taiss – Brace yourself. I imagine we’ll get something like that by the end of the year from Lena Dunham, along with some sad comments about how difficult it is to be slim, because she feels she has an obligation or whatever to be a role model for heavier women.

    • Snowflake says:

      I think it is still hard to love your body when you’re naturally gorgeous. I was in the bathroom at a bar one time and this gorgeous girl was in front of the mirror. She was so beautiful I was wowed. Then she turned and complained about she looked fat or something like that. I thought, are you looking for attention, you’re obviously beautiful. Then I realized she just had her insecurities like the rest of us. As a woman, you get mixed messages from people and the media. I’ve had guys tell me I’m to big, I lost too much weight, I have no butt now.finally, now that I’m older, I’ve learned to accept myself. So no matter what you look like, is common to have issues about your body.

    • TyrantDestroyed says:

      If I were an actress which main activities included working out and cooking balanced while going to auditions I would rock a body too. But is hard to have an “amazing shape” when you have an office 9 to 6 job and one hour to commute each day so I roll my eyes at this too.

  2. Digital Unicorn (aka Betti) says:

    Am with her on the cheese and ham thing – only difference is i have some wine to wash it down 😉

    • detritus says:

      Mmmm, yes. the older I get, the more I am on board for meat and cheese over cake.

      I worked at a place known for their charcuterie for a bit. I spent way too much tip money on fancy cheeses I had never tried because they were all sooo good.

  3. paolanqar says:

    I am willing to give her a pass because she had cancer and she probably appreciates her body more for that reason.

  4. manta says:

    She looks great.
    And a post about Michelle Monaghan followed by a post about Jake Gyllenhaal? I just need to watch Source Code once again.

  5. Neelyo says:

    I will always love her for KISS KISS BANG BANG. There should have been screwball comedies written for her after that performance.

  6. CharlotteCharlotte says:

    She’s so lovely. My partner does this sigh and head tilt thing when he sees her. He doesn’t know he does it.

    I know he does it.

    I know.

  7. Esmom says:

    Never heard of The Path, thanks for the heads up. I’m also someone who is enjoying more strenuous workouts the older I get. I found a studio that does this very intense high intensity interval training and I go twice a week to get really worked over. I also enjoy a really hard spin class once a week. The mental health benefits are really what keep me going more than anything else.

    So, it sound like I’m in the minority but I found myself nodding along to a lot of what she said. I wouldn’t say I “love” my body but I appreciate more and more what it is capable of doing, especially as I see my older relatives’ bodies really starting to let them down as they age.

    And I’ll take cheese over cake any day. All the cheese!

  8. Zip says:

    None of these “I’m super fit”-woman seem to do any weight training and it shows. Cardio is nice (I love running!) but if you want to have a great shape with some muscle tone you have to lift heavy weights!

  9. JellyBeans says:

    I miss the excitement of True Detective (season 1)

    • Zuzus Girl says:

      They not only dropped the ball on season two, they ran over it and set it on fire. It was awful!

    • Lauren II says:

      True Detective Season 1 was raw and fascinating. Michelle, Woody and Matthew were brilliant. I watched the series 4 times on Blu-Ray because of their mesmerizing performances.
      Michelle looks better without heavy makeup, and i admire her immensely.

  10. Moneypenny says:

    I’ve been surprised the last two days on here with so many people annoyed with slim women telling us that they’ve learned to love their bodies. None of us are in their industry where we are constantly told at that size 2, we need to lose weight. That is not good for anyone’s self esteem. Lots of these women have overcome eating disorders. I know I have. Yes, I’m tall and slim, but I don’t see why my experience should get immediately discounted. We do not know what a lot of these people have dealt with–drug use, eating disorders, depression (for me, just the last two). I think that anyone who grows to accept that their body doesn’t have to unnaturally be a size 2 and can appreciate their body’s strength is a good example.

    • Snowflake says:

      This^. Agree

    • Locke Lamora says:

      I think because the “I love my body because it’s capable” became the new buzz phrase for Hollywood. Like feminism last year and “I don’t trust women who have no female friends” the year before. It seems like they all parrot it now and it sounds less and less sincere.

      And while I do feel like every person has their struggle, is it really that wrong to think that a person who fits into society’s ideal maybe has a bit of an easier time than people who don’t?

      • Moneypenny says:

        I don’t disagree that this might be becoming a bit of a catchphrase in Hollywood. It isn’t wrong to think that, but someone always has it better or worse. Should any of us be complaining about how we look with the emergency situation of malnourished children in Northern Nigeria? Or is it better to be a bit overweight or have skin cancer like Michelle did? Or struggle with their mental health like Alexa Joel?

        While someone might fit into the scoeital norm of appearance, it doesn’t mean that their mental or physical state is healthier than those who don’t.

    • Tata says:

      @moneypenny – I understand what you are saying (although really, you are going to bring up malnourished Nigerian children in the context of this discussion? Sure…)

      However, This is a site named celeBITCHY and I personally like that this is one place I can come and be kind of snarky.

      As to your 2nd comment – yes, I would be much more interested to see someone in a wheelchair or with a limb difference talking about what health means to them, and the intersections of ableism and mental health in their situations.

      There are plenty of representations of thin, beautiful white ladies, and if they have mental struggles despite looking like MM that is body dysmorphia, serious and deserves sympathy. No one said otherwise.

      • Moneypenny says:

        I’m not really comparing this to malnutrition, of course. I’m just saying things are always easier for some than others. And I agree that I’d rather hear this from someone in a wheelchair, but it’s not really reasonable to expect that we’d see that on a celebrity gossip site.

        Believe me, this issue isn’t my hill to die on at all. I’m a black woman and I’m definitely not even saying I see myself in MM. just trying to be more sympathetic (when generally I’m just filled with rage at the state of America and Emperor Cheeto).

    • detritus says:

      The Miranda Kerr photo encapsulates it for me.

      Imagine those women talking about this with you and your group of friends. its tactless. Oh I love my little pooch, says the woman with 12% body fat and no pooch. It’s a humble brag.

      It’s like when celebs say they were bullied, and what they mean is someone in high school once said something mean to them. It’s disrespectful to people who were actually bullied.

  11. Giddy says:

    I’m working hard on getting healthy again. I’ve now lost *drumroll* 50 pounds and am feeling really good about my body. Physically I feel so much better and my goal is in sight. MM obviously looks great and of course she is proud of her body. A little humility would be nice, but if I looked like that I would probably be horribly obnoxious about how fabulous my body was.

  12. JA says:

    Pretty sure she has genetics to thank with her body BUT can’t hate her too much for that especially because I relate with what she says. Exercise might seem like such a chore but I love the feeling I get after a workout!! Not only that I know that what I’m doing I’m doing for my own peace of mind! Yes I could go nap after work but then I would feel crappy about not doing something for me after 8hrs of work. So instead i go to my dance class, a run or pilates and know I’m doing something that is helping my body but also giving me ME time. Also I stuff my face with cheese all the time soooo also a savory fan. I don’t know…i kinda like this women.

    • Anon says:

      Pretty sure she has the incredibly healthy diet that she listed in the interview to thank for it.

      • detritus says:

        I have a friend who eats healthier than this and works out an hour a day, minimum, and those workouts are hard.

        She will never be Moynahan’s size, and it’s because of genetics.

        You need to have the right genes to look like this, regardless of your hard work. I think it’s one of the contributing factors for ED, the false narrative that if you work out and eat a certain way you will look a certain way. There is a genetic range that cannot be changed, regardless of diet and workout strategy.

  13. Anon says:

    I guarantee you if she started eating too much she would no longer look like that. She has a lot of discipline and she should be proud of her body. Genetics determine body shape but they certainly do not determine body fat percentage.

  14. thaliasghost says:

    No shit. That is because she perfectly adheres to all the beauty standards there are.

    I do love The Path, but let’s be real.

  15. Chelly says:

    I love binge watching shows…..I’m too impatient to wait another week for a new episode. But that’s just me