Diet & Nutrition

How Jessica Rowe got her incredible body on The Real Dirty Dancing

Would you look at those abs!

By Rebecca Sullivan
Let's just say it: Jessica Rowe looks absolutely incredible on The Real Dirty Dancing.
The 49-year-old mother of two showed off her rock-hard abs in a tiny white crop top during the season premiere on Channel Seven, as she shimmied her way through the iconic dance routines from the hit 1987 film.
So, what's her secret?
"It was more because of the outfits that I had to wear!" Jess told TV WEEK of how she managed to look so good onscreen.
"Let's keep it real – I am wearing stockings and that makes a huge difference. You have undies over stockings. It's like wearing Spanx.
Jess' body looks absolutely incredible on The Real Dirty Dancing. (Image: Channel Seven)
Jess revealed her her body definitely toned up as a result of the intense dance rehearsals required for the show.
"I was doing dancing each day and also holding [my] body in a way that you don't do each day. I think that also makes a difference," she said.
"Also it's about confidence. I think if you do anything with confidence, that also makes a difference too, if you own it.
"That's why when wardrobe said 'We want you to wear this', I said, 'What?!' I put it on and thought you know what, if I've been given this to wear, when else am I going to dance in my underpants on the TV?"
Jess (left) with her fellow cast members. (Image: Channel Seven)
Jess rehearsing her moves with Todd McKenney. (Image: Channel Seven)
In terms of her diet, the self-described "crap housewife" doesn't diet or restrict herself.
She loves to document her simple, family-friendly meals on Instagram - burnt sausages, burgers, takeaway pizza, ice cream and sneaky chocolate bars in bed - so those abs aren't the result of strict dieting or sad desk salads everyday.
"I am skinny. Always have been, always will be. And no, I don't have an eating disorder," Jess wrote in a column for Essential Kids in 2013, shutting down the comments she often receives about her slim figure.
"I like my body. Sure, there are things I'd love to change. Don't we all want to suck this in, tighten this up, stick this out? I'd love to have boobs, no stretch marks, no cellulite and no varicose veins. But my padded bra, chicken fillets (the type you stuff in your bra, not in the oven) and a spray-on tan can work magic. What I can't change is my body type."
Jess and her daughter at the beach. Look at those abs! (Image: Instagram @jessjrowe)
Jess explained she loves weight training, because it makes her feel strong and empowered.
"Though I'm skinny, I love to lift weights. Dead lifts, bench presses, squats and chin-ups are not only good for my body, they're good for my head.
"I love to feel empowered and strong. That endorphin rush, that hour of 'me time' once a week, helps keep my head together. I also get a natural high from eating healthy, fresh food most of the time. But I don't deprive myself of my nightly fix of white chocolate. Plus some vino. It's about balance."
Jess on the cover of Body & Soul a few years ago. (Image: Supplied)
And no, she doesn't diet.
"I think diets are crap. They make me so cross. It's nonsense. It's not a healthy way to live your life or lead your life because it's all about denial and that's not healthy," she told Body+Soul in 2018.
"Also anyone who has ever dieted knows that once you go back to normal it doesn't carry over. To me it's about balance, you eat more healthy food than crap food and you get your body moving, but you do it sensibly, not in extreme ways."
On weekends she likes to treat herself with "an almond or choccy croissant for breakfast", along with a "big coffee in the morning."
"I think it's important for people not to get too caught up with having to put certain foods on their plate because life is about enjoying, and for me, it's about enjoying food and the joy it brings you rather than thinking 'I've just got to have this on my plate'," Jess said.
She also explained she stays fit and toned with "Pilates once a week" and "walking to the car" to get her steps up.
WATCH BELOW: Jessica Rowe reveals her nickname for husband Peter Overton. Story continues after video.
And as for her incredibly youthful-looking skin, Jess is not shy about admitting that she gets Botox injections.
"I don't want wrinkles. Well, I am a little vain. I feel fresher when I have it done," she told Whimn.
"For me, I do it for myself. I've never felt under pressure to do it and I'd rather be honest about it."
We love your honesty, Jess!
The Real Dirty Dancing airs Sunday, 7pm, and Monday, 7:30pm, on Channel Seven.