“To me, being healthy means feeling good about the choices I’m making, and most important, it’s about keeping fit mentally and physically,” the actress, 37, tells SHAPE for its November cover. “I’m constantly reminding myself it’s not about my thighs: It’s about my commitment and my happiness level.”
“It’s important to me to show my children that I care about my health and fitness enough to stay committed,” Bell says. “So when I’m in their room with them, I’ll do squats. When they ask what I’m doing, I’ll say I’m getting my physical fitness in. And because they copy everything I do, the next time they pick up a heavy bag they’ll say, ‘I’m getting my workout in.’ ”
“It’s a value I want to instill in my kids at an early age — that paying attention to your body is mandatory.”
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“I need fast workouts. I don’t have an hour and a half — I have 25 minutes, max,” Bell says. “So I incorporate sprints into my routine. I sprint up my driveway, walk back, repeat. I do it 10 or 15 times. The whole thing takes me maybe 15 minutes. It’s fantastic for your heart, brain and body.”
“At work, while I’m running through lines with my fellow actors, I’ll be leaning backward on a chair doing tripcep dips. At home, when my kids and I are on a walk, and they’re meandering and looking at leaves, I’ll do lunges. I get it in however and whenever I can.”
And if she can swing it, Bell will head to a yoga class.
“If I have a choice, I will always go to yoga rather than sit on the coach, because I feel so much better afterward,” she says.