Eva Mendes talks about getting back in shape after the birth of her second daughter, and how she loves being at home with her girls and partner Ryan Gosling
Credit: Arthur Belebeau/SHAPE magazine

Eva Mendes has plenty of glamour in her life between her career as an actress, her own fashion line and her partner Ryan Gosling. But it’s the simple things that make her happiest, like being at home with Gosling and their two girls.

“What people don’t know about me is that I love being home,” she tells SHAPE for their April cover, on newsstands March 14. “Instead of hitting the red carpet, I’d rather be with our girls.”

The couple has two daughters — Esmeralda Amada, 2, and Amada Lee, 11 months — and Mendes, 43, says staying active by keeping up with her little ones has helped shed the baby weight.

“In some ways, it’s been more challenging to get back in shape after my second daughter. Yet it’s not as hard as I thought it would be, because I’m always running around with the kids,” she explains. “I never sit down — I’m on the move all day.”

Credit: Arthur Belebeau/SHAPE magazine

Eva Mendes

When she isn’t boosting her heart rate by chasing after Esmeralda and Amada, Mendes heads to the gym.

“Working out allows me to spend time on myself,” she says. “Knowing that I have an hour to dedicate to my wellness is a priority for me now.”

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There, she sticks to short, high-impact cardio workouts.

“I love doing intervals, like running and sprinting, and I see great results with that versus the 30 or 45 minutes of steady cardio I used to do on the treadmill,” Mendes explains. “Between intervals, I lift weights. Right now I’m sticking to light weights because I have a herniated disc in my lower back.”

Credit: Arthur Belebeau/SHAPE magazine

Eva Mendes

“I’m off-season right now, so I work out three days a week. But when I’m getting ready for an event or in the summer, it’s five days a week. I don’t exercise more than that though, because I see better results when my body has a rest period.”

Mendes knows what works best for her body type, and makes sure to celebrate all shapes with her clothing line, the Eva Mendes Collection at New York & Company.

“There are diverse body types in my family. One of my sisters is very voluptuous; the other one is skinny. It was really important to me to create a clothing line that embraces all those differences,” she says.