Alison Sweeney: Life After 'Days' 'Feels Crazy'

The former soap star says she's rolling in free time

Photo: Austin Hargrave

Ever since she was 16, Alison Sweeney often logged 12 hour days, five days a week on the set of Days of Our Lives.

But the former soap star, 37, who sat down at her Hollywood Hills home to discuss her decision to leave the NBC show for this week’s PEOPLE, says she’s happy to be free, if not a little antsy.

“It feels crazy,” says the almost-stay-at-home mom of her new lighter schedule. After filming her last scenes on May 23, “I’m like, ‘I think I’ll go work out.’ It’s whatever I want to do right now.”

She still keeps busy with hosting The Biggest Loser a few months out of the year, and penning novels (her latest, Scared Scriptless, hit shelves in June).

But Sweeney’s relishing the time she now has to spend with husband Dave Sanov and their two kids, son Ben, 9, and daughter Megan, 5.

Before, “Ben would wake up really early just so he could have breakfast with me before I went to work, and that sat with me. I’d like to be there for them and not feel like I have nine other things going on.”

And the little ones couldn’t be happier. “They were jumping up and down,” Sanov says of when his kids heard the news. “They don’t watch Days but knowing the character of ‘Mom’ will actually be taking them to school in the mornings is super cool.”

For more on Alison Sweeney’s career move, including highlights from her decades playing the conniving Sami Brady, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday

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