Yesterday’s Golden Globes ceremony kind of overshadowed another tradition of sparkly gowns, slim bodies and spectacle taking place over the weekend: The 2012 Miss America pageant, a multi-day, reality-TV-itized affair in Vegas that concluded Saturday night. Miss Wisconsin Laura Kaeppeler was crowned the winner. The random line-up of judges included Dancing With the Stars Mark Ballas, Kardashian mom Kris Jenner and actress Teri Polo. Contestants included Miss South Carolina Bree Boyce, who lost more than 100 pounds before competing, and Miss Idaho Genevieve Nutting, who wants to prove that she looks good in a potato sack. And, overall, the women seemed to have pretty healthy bodies—on the thin side, of course, and perhaps more perfectly proportioned than most of us, but ultimately more hot-girl-next-store than bone-baring runway model.
Some folks have complained that today’s contestants are still thinner or more sculpted, more self-consciously ‘fit,’ than contestants from past decades. But that might reflect the growing activity and athleticism of today’s young women. In their introductory videos, talent competitions and Q&A’s, many of the 2012 contestants talked about how they stay fit, and their answers are pretty cool, and diverse—from running to rock-climbing to ballet. Take a look.