Anna Paquin's All-Day Energy Secrets

Brian Bowen Smith
You could envy Anna Paquin a lot of things. Starting with her rocking body, which is on full display one hot morning when the 28-year-old Academy Award–winning actress shows up for our chat at a cafe in Venice, California, absolutely killing it in cutoff jeans shorts and a paper-thin white T-shirt. Then theres her red-hot career—her fourth season playing telepathic waitress Sookie on the HBO hit True Blood debuts this month. And what about her recent marriage to hunky co-star Stephen Moyer?

But after our day with Anna, we long most for her amazing energy. This is a girl who likes her workouts hard, her coffee "giant," and admits that she doesnt like to sit still. After Stephen drops her off and takes their two dogs to the park, Anna dishes about everything from the pressure to stay thin in Hollywood to whether she sees True Blood kiddies in her future.

Q: You started out acting and got an Oscar for The Piano at such a young age. How did you turn out so, well, sane?
A: I have a really, really, really normal family. And by normal I mean were all nuts on some level. I think youve gotta be a little nuts to pursue any kind of creative job. I was also a really good kid. I know that sounds really dull, but I didnt rebel in the traditional sense.

Q: In what areas of your life are you healthiest—and less so?
A: Well, I could probably drink less coffee and drink more water. I try to eat well, but sometimes you can be a little too obsessive. Its good to remember its actually not the be-all and end-all, and if youre absolutely falling down with exhaustion, really, do you need to go to the gym? Im very hard on myself. So Ill be inclined to go until I hit a wall and collapse, or someone is like, "Mmm, stop." Contrary to what you believe, you are not actually superhuman.

Q: Right, youre not being chased for your life.
A: As I get older, Im learning to balance that stuff better. Not focus on one thing at the expense of everything else. Sometimes its like, walk away from the elliptical machine. Go sit outside. Do something relaxing. Because youll be in a better mood.

Q: Your character is a tough cookie. Were you already like that?
A: Ive always been a tough cookie. I just didnt do it in short shorts and a blonde ponytail. I mean, if youre going to be spending literally every single day of your working life wearing clothes that barely cover your body, youre gonna be extra-diligent. Ive always been pretty diligent. Just that, theres just a little extra motivation of, "Hmmm, teeny white shorts and a bikini top? I think I will go to Pilates this morning."

Q: What do you love doing?
A: My favorite workout by far is boxing.

Q: You go a couple of times a week.
A: At least. Its so much fun. You do a full proper boxing workout. You start jumping rope, and you do the pads, where your trainer calls out the combinations and you do them.

12 Next
Amy Spencer
Last Updated: May 11, 2011

Get the latest health, fitness, anti-aging, and nutrition news, plus special offers, insights and updates from!

More Ways to Connect with Health