Kelly Ripa hardly ever skips a workout.
“There are a lot of people that don’t have to work out, and I am so happy for them, but I have to work out for my body type,” she tells PEOPLE. “It’s part of my routine. It’s part of my ritual. It doesn’t just make me look better, but it makes me emotionally feel better.”
Ripa likes to mix up her regimen with a combination of activities, including the dance-cardio class AKT four days a week, SoulCycle two days a week and running one day a week.
“I love the dance class,” says the Live! with Kelly and Michael host, who has three children with husband Mark Consuelos. “Because I think I’ve aged out of going clubbing, really, that’s my nightclub. Everybody there is my age, so it’s like a bunch of us old ladies working out.”
The daytime TV star, who’s now the face of the My Unstoppable Mom Campaign from Children’s MOTRIN, also pays serious attention to what she eats, which she revealed in May had completely changed her life. Ripa swears by her high-alkaline diet, a low-acid meal plan that she says is “responsible for [her] not being in pain.” “I actually eat much more on this cleanse than I do in my actual life, but it’s what you eat and how you eat it,” she said at the time.
Ripa tells PEOPLE she still follows the diet, though she has made a few adjustments.
“I like to drink coffee. I occasionally will have fish. The alkaline diet is primarily a vegan diet, but I like cream in my coffee. I like to have a glass of wine. So I don’t adhere to it strictly, but when I do a cleanse, it will be seven days, and then I go back to my normal life. But my normal life, like I said, is not that different than the alkaline cleanse.”
That doesn’t mean it’s easier for her to be vigilant about health and fitness than it is for the rest of us. “I think it’s a problem for everybody,” she says. “I just do it. It becomes like any habit. You can make a habit of anything.”
“My sister-in-law told me this a long time ago when I wasn’t working out, and she was running, and I was like, ‘How do you do that? Why do you do that?’ And she said, ‘If we wore our insides on our outside, everybody would exercise.'”
Ripa tries to make a habit out of cooking, too, though admits she has a long way to go.
“I do make a lot of Italian food. My husband likes when I make a roasted, slow-cooked pork with hot chile peppers,” she says. “But I’m not particularly good at it! I think [my family] is just being nice to me. I think they’re trying to encourage me to keep trying.”
“Lucky for me, we have a lot of friends that are still single, like unmarried, and they come over; I think because single men or women are so malnourished…that they walk in and are like ‘Oh my God! It smells amazing in here! What are you making?!’ Like… I just burned a chicken breast. I can’t believe you’re saying that.”
– Maria Yagoda, @mariayagoda