Keri Russell: I’m a Better Mom If I’m Interested In My Own Life

04/11/2013 at 03:00 PM ET

Keri Russell The Americans Women's Health
Courtesy Women’s Health

Keri Russell is abs-olutely fabulous.

The Americans star credits her “nerdy workout” – complete with personalized soundtrack! — for helping her stay slim and impressively toned.

Russell, 37, tells Women’s Health in its May cover story that she has “this really nerdy workout I do in my walk-through closet in our brownstone. I do a workout video and use my own music — whatever is inspiring to me at that time, like Alabama Shakes, the Cure, or Mumford and Sons.”

Plus, she says residing in Brooklyn offers a bonus workout — walking!

“That’s one of the great things about living in Brooklyn and in New York. You get to eat a big rich fatty meal but then you can walk home,” says Russell, who admits she didn’t start eating vegetables until about 30.

“I didn’t grow up with a mom who enforced that at all.”

The former Felicity star, who is mom to daughter Willa Lou and son River, 5, with husband Shane Deary, plays a Russian spy-next-door on the hit FX show that airs Wednesdays at 10, and when she’s training for her role as Elizabeth Jennings she isn’t afraid to break out of her indie workout groove.

“We did do a little fight training type stuff a few weeks before. I did get a bloody lip, which I am sort of proud about, in the boxing training. You should see the other guy though,” she jokes.

The funny, self-deprecating star admits it’s not easy juggling a career and motherhood, but carves out girlfriend time every few weeks and is honest about the difficulties of her competing demands.

“It’s tough,” Russell admits. “I try to quell my guilt by saying I’m a better mom if I’m interested in my own life. I’m not resentful. I can be really engaged when I am there. I like the yin and yang of both worlds, and I think it would be hard for me to give up either one.”

But she’s satisfied with her life for now, except for one thing — her rear-end.

“I’m not a complainer about age. I think my girlfriends all look so much better now than they did 15 years ago. But the thing I notice most is my butt. I used to have a really good, plump butt. Ugh — now my butt’s gone. I do wish I had my 25-year-old butt!”

— Kathy Ehrich Dowd

FILED UNDER: News , Parenting

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klutzy_girl on

Keri looks awesome!

So glad I decided to give “The Americans” a shot because it’s quickly become one of my favorite shows.

MommytoanE on

I think she’s right in many ways. “ME” time is essencial. Weather its a half hour in the morning to yourself, or a night out with friends..its important to have that time. I know when I don’t get my “me” time, I tend to become cranky, and short. But when I get time to relax, be myself and focus on something nonkid related, I remain happier.

lifeasahouse on

I’d work out in the closet if it made me look like that! She looks amazing!

meme on

She looks fantastic. That toned tummy is impressive.

Jen on

Haha! I do my nightly ab workout in my walk in closet too! It’s part of my pre-bedtime routine.