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BODYWATCH | GUEST WORKOUT

She's the Perfect Size 4, 6 or 8

June 18, 1997|CANDACE A. WEDLAN | TIMES STAFF WRITER

MC Lyte is taking the advice of her second gold single--"Keep On Keepin' On." The rap artist has moved into acting.

"I had a ball," she remarked about her recent movie shoot in "An Alan Smithee Project," with Sly and Whoopi, no less. "It's odd to see yourself in that type of light, you know, where the makeup isn't done to make you look good or gorgeous, but it was fun."

Now that Lyte, 26, is done touring for her fifth album, "Bad As I Wanna Be" (Elektra), she can concentrate on acting classes and. . . .

Question: Working out like crazy.

Answer: Yeah, I've been seeing a trainer at least four times a week. I do a lot of cardio--I play on the bike for 45 minutes, but I prefer the treadmill because I can read at the same time and it's not as stressful on my legs. And I work a lot on arms and chest and back.

Q: Work on them how?

A: Oh, boy. You want me to tell you the specific machines that I use? Forget it! I don't know the names of those things. I do use free weights for my shoulders. And I do a lot of squats, lunges for the legs and lower back, and crunches, 200 to 250. And you really see the difference in my body by going to the gym, but it's been hard because of my traveling.

Q: With all the baggy clothes that you wear, I'm curious--what dress size are you?

A: Between a 4 and a 6--I can go up to an 8 if I'm not doing what I'm supposed to do--but I'd say the average is a 6.

Q: I thought so. Same here. And how tall are you? I'm 5 feet 4 3/4.

A: Oh, I'm a shorty. I'm like 5-4 1/2.

Q: You're dinky. Just a little thing.

A: Yeah. So are you.

Q: Can you exercise at all when you're on tour?

A: The most I can do is some push-ups and crunches. We don't go on stage until 11, sometimes midnight, and, before you know it, we're pulling out at 7 in the morning.

Q: Whew. I'd be worn out--just lie down on the stage.

A: I know. And take a nap. I've been moving more onstage than I've ever moved before so I actually work up a sweat now.

Q: Well, what were you doing before?

A: I used to just walk from side to side. Now I actually exert some energy and it feels good too. It's a wonder I haven't been doing that all along.

Q: You weren't ready. You're just watching your own progress.

A: Exactly. It's all done in time. Yeah, and then you feel more comfortable, you know? You don't allow the audience to determine how your mood or how your performance is going to be. You do that prior to coming to the stage and then they fall into the loop of what you've already started.

Q: Want to talk about food?

A: Food--my weakness is pasta, of course. But on the road I try to eat a lot of fruit and salads--little, greasy diners, God bless them, they all have salad.

Q: And when you're not touring?

A: I'll have cereal, maybe throw a banana in there and sometimes I'll have some turkey sausage or turkey bacon. If I'm working out I'll just have a piece of fruit. Then for lunch I love smoked turkey. I love cantaloupe and all types of water-based fruit. Also, what's good is chicken or fish with rice--or I'm allowed to have a yam--and vegetables. Then later on at night, just meat and vegetables--no starches--and that's it for the day.

Q: What do you drink?

A: Oh, all kinds of juices--apple or cranberry. I love ginger ale but that's a whole 'nother issue. Lots of water, not my eight but I do about six. And onstage I have at least six glasses of water and that really started in the last year.

Q: Are you taking vitamins?

A: Oh, yeah. I have to because I don't have time to nurse myself from a sickness.

* Guest Workout runs Wednesdays in Life & Style.

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