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He's a Junk-Food Junkie Who Does His Legwork

Body Watch | GUEST WORKOUT

February 26, 1997|CANDACE A. WEDLAN | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Blair Underwood, who stars as patrol officer Mike Rhoades on "High Incident" (ABC), is kicking up his heels these days. Not only is the handsome actor a papa-to-be (wife Desiree is expecting March 3), but he has found a challenging exercise to boot.

"I've never had a workout like kick boxing," said Underwood, 32. "It takes everything in you to do the kicks, over and over again to perfect them."

Basically, Underwood wants to break a sweat, get the heart pumping and keep his muscles toned.

"I'm not interested in getting a lot of muscle," he said.

Underwood works out with trainer Brian Shires three times a week at the Toluca Lake Power Center Gym. Ten minutes of cardiovascular work on a bike kicks off an hourlong session of push-ups, jump roping, punching the bag and kick boxing.

Underwood, who is an Army brat, is not all that disciplined when it comes to food. He'll start off being good in the morning--an egg-white omelet and apple juice--but once he hits the road, his car just seems to veer into fast-food terrain.

"I'll tell you, first thing I told Brian was, 'Look, I'm a junk-food junkie. I eat at all the fast-food restaurants. You know how it is, you're always on the go.' So the first thing he did was to put a list together which told me what I could eat at those places." (See box.)

What was that Underwood said about not wanting to be a muscle man?

"For one thing, I make my living in front of the camera, which automatically gives you 10 more pounds," he elaborated. "The first thing that bulks up, for me anyway, is my neck. It gets thicker, makes my face look bigger and then I look like a big bowling ball."

* Guest Workout runs Wednesdays in Life & Style.

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

Fast, but Healthier If you're weak for fast food like actor Blair Underwood, his trainer, Brian Shires, offers these healthful choices:

* Taco Bell: Seven-Layer Burrito, Burrito Supreme, Taco Supreme, Taco Salad without chips, Plain Bean Burrito.

* McDonald's: McLean Deluxe, no cheese; Chicken Fajitas.

* El Pollo Loco: BRC (beans, rice and chicken) Burrito; Chicken Taco; Steak Taco; a side of beans, rice, coleslaw or potato salad.

* Burger King: Broiler Chicken Sandwich.

* Carl's Jr.: Barbequed Chicken Sandwich.

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