Jessica Alba: 'If I Work Out Four Times, I Consider It a Successful Week'

"For me, the benefits of exercise are more mental than physical," says Jessica Alba

Photo: Adam Franzino/SHAPE Magazine

As a busy mom-of-two, actress and business owner, Jessica Alba isn’t too hard on herself if she skips a workout.

“If I work out four times, I consider it a successful week,” Alba, 35, tells SHAPE in the October issue. “But it’s typically more like two to three days a week because that’s what I have time for. I take Spin or hot yoga classes in the morning, and I sacrifice sleep to fit them in.”

Alba likes staying active for the way it makes her feel.

“For me, the benefits of exercise are more mental than physical,” she tells the mag. “Working out takes away that little edge so that I feel happier and more productive, and my brain can get kick-started.”

When it comes to losing weight, Alba says it’s all about what she eats.

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“With exercise, I get a little more toned and I definitely feel stronger, but my diet is much more important if I’m trying to slim down,” she says. “In that case, I usually don’t eat gluten, dairy, fried foods or processed foods. I try to stick to a diet that’s low in sugar and carbs, and high in lean protein and vegetables.”

But she’s definitely not against the occasional indulgence.

“I’m not big on carbs, but some of my Honest colleagues and I just ate like a gallon of popcorn!” she says. “Also, while I don’t usually have dessert, I do really like strawberry shortcake. I mean I really, really like it.”

Most importantly, Alba says she is thankful for the body she has.

“I love my shape because it does what I want it to,” she says. “If I want to go on a hike or a bike ride or go for a swim, I know my body will do everything I tell it to. I also appreciate that I can push myself through when I’m feeling tired. There’s always a little extra something to get me past the tired moments.”

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