The Stunning Transformation Of Jordin Sparks

It's hard to recognize the Jordin Sparks we were first introduced to in 2007. The freshly crowned, baby-faced winner of American Idol season 6 won the country's votes with her impressive pipes and bubbly personality. These days, Sparks is a little less baby-faced and a lot more glam. No surprise, considering that Sparks's journey has included a whirlwind of hard realizations, chart-topping hits, and new lifestyle ventures.

Born in Phoenix, Arizona, Sparks grew up around professional greatness. Her dad was former NFL player Phillippi Sparks (via TV Guide). She credits her dad for her perseverance, saying, "My dad played football, so all of us in my family are very athletic [and have an] athlete's mindset. It is very regimented. You see a goal, and you are going to go for it. We are going to practice and do whatever we need to do to get there, so I have always carried that with me" (via InStyle).

Jordin Sparks went from mrom music to fitness

Sparks' talent and interest in performing started at an early age. Before she could even legally attain a driver's license, she competed in America's Most Talented Kids, and was named the Coca-Cola Rising Star at the Arizona State Fair in 2002 (via TV Guide). After receiving the crown on American Idol, Sparks proved she could make a career with longevity from her win. Her 2007 reign on the pop music charts is stunning. Her songs, "No Air," "One Step at a Time," and "Tattoo" were smash hits, and her first two albums found a place on the top 10 Billboard charts (via Bustle).

After breaking into the spotlight through music, it appears Sparks has chosen to shift gears and focus more on her health. "I had gotten really sick," she admits, "and I was about to celebrate my birthday and I was like, 'I should be in the prime of my life right now. I shouldn't be feeling like this. I really need to make my health a priority'" (via Today). Sparks lost an impressive 50 pounds in 18 months. She told Redbook, "the key was finding exercises I enjoyed. If you don't, you won't stick with it."

Sparks uses her time to help and grow her family

Along with promoting her own fitness journey, Sparks is also using her time to raise awareness for issues that affected people close to her. Her step-sister, Bryanna, tragically lost her battle with sickle cell anemia and passed away at 16. "Her dream was to raise awareness and to find a cure for it," Sparks reveals. "People know about sickle cell, but they don't know how rampant it is or how many people are affected by it. It kills 100,000 people a year, so ... Why aren't we talking about this more?" (via People).

Suffering loss and adopting and healthier lifestyle has hopefully made Sparks stronger than ever for one of her newest roles: motherhood. Sparks gave birth to her little boy, Dana Isiah Thomas Jr., and expressed her utter joy over her son by exclaiming, "The love is different than anything that I have [ever felt]. I don't even know how to explain it. I can't. It's unreal and I know that I have way more inspiration" (via E! News).

When Sparks stopped looking for love, she found it

Jordin Sparks' new glow may also have to do with her finding "the one." In the past, she had a high profile relationship with fellow singer Jason Derulo. Derulo has been open about their relationship struggles, saying, "There was a lot of pressures of marriage. There was a lot of arguing and stuff like that that just weighed on our relationship over time" (via E! News).

Sparks appeared to be feeling the weight as well. After coming out of the relationship she claims, "I'd gone through a crazy time last year, so I was just like 'You know that? I'm good. I'm going to stay single. I'm just not going to look'" (via E! News).

Sparks accepting singledom didn't have to happen for long. She has since tied the knot with fitness-model Dana Thomas. Her appreciation for her husband is evident when she shares, "Thank you for being the most amazing man I know. For bringing me so much light & joy. For making me a Mommy. For constantly building me up & making me better. For loving me & loving DJ" (per E! News). We love love! And love what it has done for Sparks.