Gina Rodriguez is feeling strong and fearless.
The stunning Jane the Virgin actress is October's Shape cover girl and inside the magazine she's opening about her life, health and how she won't give up her joy to hit the gym.
Working long hours on her TV show, Rodriguez doesn't get a lot of free time to train, but she's learned to be OK with that.
"…when I started working on Jane again, there was no time for training, even at night…I couldn't fit into certain clothes, and I was a little curvier," Rodriguez tells the magazine. "Before, I would have beaten myself up. But my boyfriend gave me some great advice. He said, 'Don't be angry with your body—it changed because your routine shifted.' And that was like a gift."
Rodriguez continues, "As an actress, there are so many pressures to look a certain way and fit into a sample size. But I've got to embrace the fact that when I'm shooting Jane, I can't work out as much. My body is going to look different, and that's OK. I'm not willing to wring the joy from my life to kill myself in the gym."
When the Golden Globe winner does get some time to work out, Rodriguez loves Muay Thai.
"Doing Muay Thai taught me so much about my body," she shares. "Now I view it as an engine that keeps me active and healthy. To do Muay Thai, you have to build up your strength and stamina. It's mind over matter; you're pushing yourself. What I like best about it is the sense of inner strength it gives me. Knowing I can protect myself is a powerful feeling."
And when it comes to food, Rodriguez uses it to fuel her.
"Food fuels me now, and that feels so good," she explains. "It doesn't make me lethargic anymore. Now I'm eating when I'm hungry and to power my body, I'm not feeding my emotions. Which I did. And which I'll do again in the future, let's be real. But I'm trying to be conscious of not doing it right now."
Rodriguez wants us to celebrate every body type on the spectrum, because we're all beautiful.
"I love my shape because it makes me strong and fearless," Rodriguez says. "There's a huge spectrum of body types, and we need to celebrate all of them—the model shapes, the beautiful new wave of curvy full-figured women, and those who are in between. I feel blessed to be part of that spectrum."
Rodriguez took to Instagram to share her upcoming cover, telling her followers how she really feels about being on the magazine.
The actress wrote, "It feels incredibly bizarre and unnatural to celebrate during these times. My mind is constantly working to try and see where I can help, contribute and grow. So then maybe it is right to share this cover of @shape magazine because it marks a time in my life where I pushed myself to the max. Where I learned that being healthy was self love. That putting myself, vulnerabilities and all, out there for the world to judge isn't as scary today."
Rodriguez continued, "We must make those risks in order for change and growth to occur. I love this cover. Not because I feel good and myself and real in it but because it pushed me to a place that wasn't easy and I conquered."