Madonna's Right To Bare Arms

Poor Madge just can’t win. First, her efforts to adopt a little girl from a third-world nation were thwarted by people who claimed she was doing so for the wrong reasons. Then she lost her friend Michael Jackson. Then two workers died in a horrible accident while building a stage for her performance. And now, as if that wasn’t enough, Madonna, 50, is being attacked by news outlets around the globe…for her ARMS. See the photo that sparked it.

Yup, Google “Madonna” and “arms” and 4,300,000 results come back, including:

“Madonna's 'veiny' arms spark health fears”

“Madonna's muscular arms prompt criticism she has been exercising too much”
“Madonna's freaky arms causing a frenzy”

"Time to quit the gym Madonna! Madge proudly shows off her stringy, muscular arms in London”

We all know Madonna smuggles some serious guns. And yes, in recent years, they have grown more and more muscular, as her overall body has become leaner and leaner. The overall effect can be extreme. But does she really need to be treated like some sort of freak about it?

Check out this visual retrospective of Madonna’s bi’s and tri’s. addressed the topic from a workout POV, asking if the Material Girl has gone too far with her punishing two hours, six days a week exercise regimen and strict diet, which bans dairy, processed foods, spices, oils, sauces, alcohol and caffeine.

Shawn Eisenbach, a personal training manager at New York Health & Racquet Club, told PopEater he believes Madonna's leaner look is a result of her dietary constraints. "I know she is into Pilates, but I just think it is her diet. She is super lean [and], eating is sixty-percent of any look. She's definitely on some very strict eating.” Eisenbach said he wouldn’t be surprised if some of the crazy bicep photos were “distorted," but added that he would never advocate his own clients looking as lean as Madonna. "People can do cardio four days a week and do weight training two days a week, [but] this is definitely too much. It doesn't look good.”

Madonna works out with personal fitness trainer Tracy Anderson (who also trains Gwyneth Paltrow), who has called Madonna is her hardest-working pupil and dismissed the critics who say the singer has taken exercise too far. “Madonna is an athlete. That's what I try to hammer into people's heads, people who criticize her for training two hours, six days a week. She's just like a baseball player or a soccer player. I don't have to scream at her because she's so motivated. She organizes her time so she can train – she makes an appointment to do it and she keeps it, but two hours is the most she ever exercises in a day. Madonna will never look her age. She doesn't even look half her age – she looks 19."

That’s a bit hyperbolic - I don’t think she looks 19 - but she ain’t lookin’ 50, either.  I guess when I look at Madonna, I don’t see age; I see a talented entertainer who I’ve loved for years, from Like a Virgin to La Isla Bonita to Ray of Light.  And of course I see her body and how unreal it looks – “Madonna” and “ripped” are practically synonymous at this point. If anything, it’s motivating to me in a slight “You can have a fab post-baby body, too!” kind of way. I can’t help but believe, though, that if she were photographed in a tank top looking less defined, I’d be blogging about the media headlines like “Madonna’s sleeves need more material, girl!” or “Madge’s bat wing arms flew the coop!” She just can’t win – no women in Hollywood can.

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