Jessica Alba is reflecting on all of the things the unprecedented year of 2020 has taught her and one of the actress’ most glaring revelations is that she was pushing herself too hard during workouts.
The Hollywood star has had quite a busy 2020 despite the coronavirus pandemic upending the normalities of her day-to-day work and home life. Alba runs her own business — The Honest Company, which sells eco-friendly consumer goods — and juggles parenting her three kids — Honor, 12, Haven, 9, and Hayes, 3 — with her husband, Cash Warren.
On the side, Alba has prioritized her own health and wellness. Most recently, the actress-turned-entrepreneur is the star of the January/February 2021 issue of Women’s Health, where she talks all about her successful company and how she finds the time to take care of herself in between her many responsibilities.
While reflecting on her fitness regimen as of late, Alba revealed that she’s learned her past approach to exercise was all wrong.
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“I always thought, I need to sweat out my weight in water, I need to have muscle failure, I need to feel like I just ran a marathon—that’s how hard I needed to work out,” she told the magazine.
It wasn’t until the pandemic forced gyms to close that she realized she didn’t need to go so hard during workouts.
“I’ve learned to mix it up and not feel like I’m a failure if I’m not, you know, killing myself,” Alba continued.
The actress said she now works out two to four times a week and has since taken up reformer Pilates.
“I feel every muscle in my core,” she said of her new exercise of choice. “I never even knew I had those things.”
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Additionally, Alba cleared up some assumptions about her fitness regimen. She went on a vegan hiking retreat over the summer but cleared up any beliefs that she was an avid hiker, or a vegan.
“We’re not hikers. Every time we were shocked to get up the mountain, then the people ahead of us would be like, ‘Halfway point!'” she recalled of the trip, which she went on with a friend.
She admitted that she attempts to eat plant-based four days a week and doesn’t drink alcohol. Her non-plant based diet comes back in full force on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, though.
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“All bets are off. That feels like moderation to me,” she said of her eating habits on the weekends.
Alba also dished on how she stays calm and practices wellness during her long workdays. At her office, she said she has amassed a collection of crystals, and is often working on breathing exercises throughout the day.
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All in all, Alba said 2020’s unpredictable events led her to see the positives in letting go of her past routines.
“The pandemic has forced me to be comfortable with things not being completely buttoned up, with allowing myself to not always have the answer, for mistakes to kind of stay as is,” she shared. “It’s also reinforced that real joy comes from the moments when, you know, we’re playing a game with the kids at dinner, or when [son] Hayes wants to show us his latest trick on the scooter, or from our family walks. That’s the stuff that truly matters.”