Alicia Keys on fitness, fashion and her new sneaker collaboration with Reebok

Alicia Keys Reebok collaboration
Photography courtesy
Alicia Keys Reebok collaboration
Photography courtesy

Preview the Reebok Classic x Alicia Keys Summer 2013 collection »

In the midst of her Girl on Fire world tour, we sat down with Alicia Keys in New York (looking very uptown-downtown in a printed Givenchy shirt and sneakers—the new A.Keys wedge from her fall Reebok collection) to talk Crossfit, vitamins and being a slave to fashion.

She was ahead of the curve on the sneaker resurgence:
“When I was a kid, I’d get the Reebok Freestyle sneakers because they were a good price range, multiple colours and I could match them with my jacket and shirt. In 2002 or 2003, I did a song called ‘If I Ain’t Got You.’ For the video, we were in Harlem and I brought the Freestyle and I painted it purple. I thought, ‘Man, it’d be cool to bring the sneaker back.’”

She follows Kate Middleton’s approach to repeat dressing:
“I don’t care if I wear a jacket three or five times. I don’t want to be a slave to fashion, but I love when it can complement you. I love Givenchy, Celine, Chloé, Zac Posen and Stella McCartney.”

She knows what it is to be thincouraged:
“I’ve felt pressured [to be skinny], especially in the beginning. You’re just figuring out who you are, what is sexy and beautiful. I think you search for people’s approval. I’m glad I never went too far. I’ve always loved to be myself and curvaceous. I found a good balance…rather than being obsessed with being a certain pound or number.”

Her two-year-old does push-ups:
“You’re always busy working, dreaming, sleeping. Then you have a baby and it’s so hard. I’ll work out with my son, [Egypt], he’ll try to do a couple push-ups, or he’ll count for me. I’ll find creative ways to work it in. That’s the part that is the most important. If I can’t get in 40 minutes, I could do 20 minutes. I love variety and do yoga, weight training, running and swimming. I did Crossfit before and I almost died. But it was a death that I liked. On tour, I don’t have trainers that travel with me. There are different websites I’ll go to and I love workout DVDs.”

She has no time for crappy vitamins:
“I believe in vitamins. They can’t have synthetic crap in them. I can’t call in sick for a day off from work—I have to be there and be healthy. I have a new thing, I try to drink a big bottle of water in a day. It’s so hard. I’m trying. I eat well, I don’t eat meat I just eat fish. [But] I really like pizza. I’m happy when I chose the salad over the pizza.”