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Men's Health

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Q&A With True Blood's Stephen Moyer

The film and TV star talks to us about working with his co-star and real-life wife Anna Paquin, raising a family, and maintaining those killer abs.

Do you have a parenting philosophy?

It might be: Deal with stuff as it comes up. I don't want them to think they can't be honest about stuff. As kids, the default setting seems to be to hide the truth. My job is: "Tell the truth." Because someday, something really big is going to happen and you're going to hope they tell you the truth and don't try to cover it up.

Do you encourage your children to go into acting or are you actively campaigning against it?

[Laughs.] I'm from a very normal, blue-collar background. Nobody from my family ever was an actor. It wasn't something that you could do without falling on your face somehow. But my parents completely backed me, 100%. I want my kids to do what makes them happy. I'm not campaigning for them to go into acting, but if that's where their hearts lie, I won't stop them from doing what their passion is.

You and your fellow vampires are forever taking off your shirts. How does a bloodsucker stay in such fine form? You've got some pretty impressive abs.

[Laughs harder.] I actually don't, but it's awfully sweet of you to say! I don't think many of the men on the show naturally have washboard stomachs. But we've got Ryan Kwanten [the actor who plays Jason Stackhouse] on the show and he has the most insane body on the planet. He eats burgers and everything that I would love to eat and is still able to keep it, but he just says: "I'll run for an extra 30 minutes in the morning!" But see, I don't want to do an extra half an hour in the morning! I go to the gym. I've got a trainer. I train three times a week. I do a little running. I had a knee operation a few months ago, so I also have a recumbent bike in the garage, which I try to go on most days.

Have you had to give up those amazing English ales in the name of good nutrition and a flat stomach?

Yep. Sadly. The truth is, fitness is about what you put in. It's equally about exercise, but it's about what you put in, too. I'm sitting here as we speak eating a salad with seared tuna. When I've got a big scene coming up, the bread and potatoes go out the window. I'm an English boy and I like a bacon sandwich every morning. But when the kit's comin' off [English slang for stripping], the bacon sandwiches go out the window, too.

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