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Carmella Speaks Openly About Pressure To Have A Certain Body Type In WWE

Coming off an impressive showing at Elimination Chamber, WWE Superstar Carmella opens up about her body and eating habits.

By Chris Phelan
Carmella standing in the ring with her arms above her head

Last weekend’s Elimination Chamber featured plenty of can’t-miss WWE moments. From Sami Zayn heroically falling short in his quest to dethrone Roman Reigns, to Logan Paul attacking Seth Rollins mid-match setting up a likely WrestleMania showdown as well as Asuka becoming the #1 contender to the RAW Women’s title, the event highlighted major storylines that the WWE Universe is already buzzing about.

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Lost in the shuffle, however, was the breakout performance by Carmella in the women’s Elimination Chamber match. Thanks to a dazzling array of superkicks and an uncanny ability to seize the moment, Carmella was one elimination away from heading to WrestleMania to challenge Bianca Belair. Although Asuka ended up victorious, many fans were blown away by Carmella’s skills and longevity in the match. To say she made the most out of her opportunity is an understatement.

We’re excited to see how the Queen of Staten Island regroups in the coming weeks — clearly, she will be looking to parlay her momentum into an unforgettable WrestleMania moment! Although she has plenty of forward trajectory in WWE at the moment, Carmella hasn’t had the easiest year. From suffering an injury that took her out of action to personal health complications, she’s shown strength most Superstars can only dream of. 

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However, struggling with her body is nothing new to the Superstar. Carmella recently caught up with Yahoo Life to shine a light on her struggles with her body early in her WWE career in an effort to de-stigmatize a lot of misperceptions about women’s body issues. In typical Carmella fashion, she didn’t hold anything back during the interview, and the WWE Universe was privileged to see her in a different light.

Before signing with WWE, Carmella was famously an NFL cheerleader where she said she was introduced to the pressure of having the perfect body. During her interview, she mentioned that NFL teams at the time had a strict set of guidelines meant to keep all cheerleaders looking a certain way, which translated into some stressful times for her when she was in her early 20s.

“There's a lot of pressure to look your best and be fit and healthy,” she said. “And I think I was sort of doing it more in an unhealthy way.”

Unfortunately, things didn’t get easier for her once she joined WWE, as her career as a Superstar made her an even more high-profile person thanks to being so prominently featured on television.

“When I started out, I had so much pressure like 'I have to be fit, I want to have a six-pack, I need to keep this up.' I mean as a wrestler, you need to have a specific physique and look a certain way,” Carmella revealed. “And that's kind of what set me apart too is I always had a defined body and things like that. And I tried to keep that up.”

In trying to “keep that up,” Carmella went on to confess that she became a gym rat, frequently working out and weightlifting way past the point of exhaustion. Internal pressure coming from the wrestling industry combined with her own desire to keep up with the rest of the Superstars on the WWE roster translated to her nearly destroying her body through nonstop workouts at home and seemingly endless workouts while performing inside the ring on the road. 

It was a rigorous lifestyle — and not healthy. She confessed that her body “hurt so much” at that point in her wrestling career. Dietary restrictions she placed on herself only compounded matters.

“I did it just because that was what I thought I needed to do. Because I wanted to project this image. I want everyone to know that I'm fit and I'm healthy and I have a six-pack and things like that,” Carmella said.

Thankfully, the WWE Universe will be happy to find out those days of limiting what she eats and overworking herself in the gym are currently in Carmella’s rear-view mirror. The Queen of Staten Island is, in our opinion, in the healthiest shape of her life and she showed the world what she is capable of at Elimination Chamber.

“I've finally gotten to a point where I don't want to restrict my diet,” she said proudly. “I don't want to tell myself I can't have something. And I feel like now this is the best I've ever looked and the best I've ever felt because I just am doing what's right for me and eating intuitively.”

So what is Carmella’s secret? Well, she started listening to her body more, which naturally gave her more recovery time between workouts. Carmella also started eating more intuitively, which led to fewer restrictions as a result of — you guessed it — listening to her body, something which is infinitely healthier than forcing a specific diet. 

All in all, Carmella is absolutely living her best life in 2023, and the sky's the limit of what she can accomplish this year in WWE.

Judging by a recent Instagram post, we think Carmella looks healthy, happy and amazing.

(And just by scanning through the comments of that photo, the WWE Universe agrees!)

Here’s to Carmella being an inspiration to countless wrestling fans around the world.

Catch up on all things WWE Universe on Peacock.

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