Michelle Obama's Right to Bare Arms

02/27/2009 at 01:43 PM ET

Ron Edmonds/AP

It may be February and freezing, but Michelle Obama is heating up D.C. with her toned arms — often bared and on display in the First Lady’s fearless fashion choices. From the Inaugural Ball, where Obama showed off her shoulders and arms in a Jason Wu strapless gown, to the pink Tracy Reese frock she chose for her PEOPLE cover, her lean limbs are what everyone is buzzing about. But don’t think they come that easily. Her workout regimen includes cardio, calisthenics and weights, she told PEOPLE when she was on the campaign trail in 2007, and don’t forget good old-fashioned pushups. “It’s jump squats, you go down into a pushup then you jump up,” she said then about her routine. “What does [my trainer] call it? Squat thrusts! That’s the one I really hate. Squat thrusts with a pushup.” Celebrity trainer Elisa Gulan said not only push-ups, but probably light weights and heavy repetition helped sculpt her arms. “She has amazing tone and definition, but her arms are also sleek and streamlined,” said Gulan, whose clients include actress Becky Newton and host Terry Seymour. “You don’t get arms like that just from being on a diet.” And how does the American public feel about her predilection for sleeveless dresses? In a USA Today poll, 2,600 readers weighed in on whether it’s appropriate for the First Lady to go sleeveless so often. Forty percent said, “Yes, she’s a modern first lady,” 11 percent said, “No, it seems too informal.” The remaining 49 percent said, “Who cares [DASH] it’s her decision.” After all, voters did choose change in November! – Additional reporting by Sandra Sobieraj Westfall

For more on White House life, including family games, dinner-table conversations and new bedtime-reading habits, pick up this week’s PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday, and check out Michelle Obama’s First 100 Days of Style on InStyle.com.

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Showing 154 comments

Ronnie on

OMG! It would have been so nice if we all were able to make the decision on how we would look before we were born. All pretty people. How boring would that be?

The people that are talking about the First Lady in such a negative way, all I can say is… She is the First Lady and there is nothing you can do about it. Grow up and live with it!

Again, like a few said, this article is about her arms not her looks.

Daisy on

She is F-U-G-L-Y!

Sheene on

i dont like the black people that are living in the white house.

Dulce on

I think she is beautiful and classy and she is her own person and not afraid to be herself. They are a beautiful first family, like the Kennedy’s were.

Billie on

I’m am totally confused. How did talking about exercise and a sleeveless outfit become a talk of ugliness, liars, teeth, lips, etc. It is really ashame that people “AMERICAN PEOPLE” can feel and have such hatred in their hearts and to let it consume their thoughts is beyond me. Please don’t worry about what she wears, what she looks like, her husband, her family, etc. Some of your comments are the UGLY SIDE of America, the side the other countries see and the “WE” americans try to cover up. God bless all of you because HATRED is a ugly and miserable and lonely thing to live with, life is too short to be consumed in filth.

Sinead56 on

Snow is right, very ugly mouth. She is not a pretty woman at all. Big deal she has toned arms. She is a BIG woman. Big mouth, large hands, large feet, overall a large woman. She is certainly no trend setter. I don’t see anything unusual about what she wears. Jackie Kennedy was a “trend setter” Obama far from it.

Her dress at the convention was horrible. Her dress for the inauguration was a disaster. She isn’t even ladylike when she walks. I don’t find this couple attractive at all.

He isn’t good looking in any way either. Big ears, his mouth always looks like he just ate liquorish, lanky awkward arms and legs.

Have you guy’s watched him coming down the steps of the plane? His arms are in front of him shaking up and down. He looks like an idiot. He certainly is no Danzel Washington…..Now that’s a good looking man!

He isn’t even as great as people seem to think. He picked a bunch of crooks for his cabinet for goodness sake.

CORKY on

SHE NEEDS TO GET A NEW “DOO” AND GET HER GRILL FIXED!!!! TO HER CREDIT,HER ARMS DO LOOK GOOD; HOWEVER,THERE IS A TIME AND PLACE FOR SLEEVELESS. IN MY OPINION, SHE DRESSES MUCH TOO CASUAL.

Allen on

All I can say is BANANA anyone? She should be hanging from a tree! You either got it or you don’t. And she doesn’t have it….shes one homely women.

Krys B on

I’m very very surprised by all this hate-mongering. Beautiful or not, black,white, yellow, red… I thought America was about something more than all this hate. Surely she may not be the most beautiful person ever, but she does have a nice sense of style that transcends what often passes for fashion these days. She’s well educated and seems to love and care about her family and her(our)country very much. This hate talk should stop…you people are shaming our nation…BTW her arms are great.

Karen on

she looks really pretty seriously people its fashion not a debate let it go.

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