Sparks lost 50 lbs. back in 2009 after a lifetime struggle with her weight. "I never felt like I was suffering by eating less and exercising more," Sparks told Redbook. "The key was finding exercises I enjoyed. If you don't, you won't stick with it."
Sparks said she started walking every day with her cousin and really thought about what she was putting in her body. "Ask yourself, 'Am I really hungry, or am I having this because it looks good?'" Sparks said. "It doesn't have to be about sacrificing all the things you love. Just be conscious of portion size and why you're eating."
Sparks also revealed to Shape Magazine that she really lost the weight for her health. "I just wanted to be healthy," Sparks said. "I knew I had a long road ahead of me. I was barely working out, and my diet was a mess." After all, the singer does have to be on stage a lot and that takes stamina.
"For me to be on stage singing and dancing, the stamina that I have now is better. I don't get sick as much anymore. I feel better, I have more energy, I sleep better, everything is better."
Sparks also got sick in 2009 with appendicitis and had to undergo surgery to treat it.
"In December of this year it will be three years since I got really sick," Sparks told the New York Daily News. "It was then that I made the decision 'I'm supposed to be in the prime of my life. This changes right now.' And I really started making my health a priority."
Sparks started replacing sugary drinks like soda and Starbucks with healthier options. Her go-to snacks included Smartfood popcorn and Apple Chips.
In terms of exercise, Sparks wasn't unrealistic. "I had to start gradually," Sparks said about her walks. "Soon I was able to shift to a more challenging pace and go hiking in the nearby mountains."
The Idol winner then joined a gym and started doing Zumba classes, where she said the pounds just fell off!
Now her workout is much more intense!
Sparks revealed, "StairMaster for 15 minutes, love that thing - kicks my butt, literally. Then I do arms. I do three sets of 12 reps with 10- to 12-pound weights. Bicep curls, butterflies and then overhead. I incorporate lunges and then come back to the arms. Then I do handstands. Then I use a resistance band and walk, and it works the thighs. I'm all about this," Sparks told the NYDN while slapping her thigh. "Gotta get this done."
Not only has Sparks maintained her 50 lb. weight loss, but she is in a happy relationship with singer Jason Derulo.
Sparks helped take care of her boyfriend after a 2012 neck accident that could have left him paralyzed.
"It's incredible because he was pretty fit before he broke his neck but literally as soon as the doctor said he could be in the gym, which was maybe like a month after, he was there," Sparks said. "He couldn't run but he could lift really light weights, and he was there on a stationary bike with 5lb weights. So I was like, 'Well if you're going to do this with a broken neck, I gotta get my butt in there too.' So we were doing it together."
"He's completely taken himself to the next level of where he can be in terms of everything. His music is new, his physique is great. He looks very good. And mentally as well he's been able to reevaluate things, and our relationship has gotten so much stronger."
Check out Sparks and Derulo on Ryan Seacrest below!