Actress Alexa PenaVega Gets Real About New Motherhood

The former FP cover model and Spy Kids actress shares her insights into life with her new baby, Ocean.

Skyword Image 408710 Image courtesy of Clorox
Actress Alexa PenaVega opened up about everything from her struggles to conceive to having sex while pregnant with us in her December/January Fit Pregnancy and Baby cover story, and she's been just as open with the details of new motherhood since she gave birth to her son, Ocean, in December. Now the new mom, who is currently filming Hallmark Channel's film Destination Wedding, answers questions about how she and her husband, Carlos, have made the transition to parenthood.

FP: Staying in shape was important to you during your pregnancy. How has your fitness journey been after giving birth?

APV: The most important thing for me is being strong. It took me a little longer to recover than I would have liked, but I'm just happy I'm bouncing back. Everyone thinks you have to go to the gym to work out, but you don't. Hello, cleaning is a workout. Put some music on, have fun, clean stuff or play with your kid. I do squats holding Ocean, and he thinks we're playing a game.

You were so honest and open during your pregnancy. Do you feel the same way now that Ocean is here?

My husband and I do vlogs on our YouTube channel "LexLovesLos". Everyone always talks about the pretty parts of pregnancy and parenting, but there are really tough times. I feel like if we're not honest with each other, it's really hard, especially for new moms who don't know any different. Everyone always talks about how amazing motherhood is, but they never admit they need a break. But for me, I want to be really honest and transparent because I wanted people to be honest with me.

How has life been as a new mom?

It's so funny—life as a new mom really hasn't been that different. You get a little less sleep, but your heart is much fuller. I was a bit overwhelmed at first because I've never done life with a baby before, but for Carlos and me, we didn't want to change up our lifestyle. Instead, we have just incorporated Ocean into everything we do.

What's your favorite part of being a mom?

I literally just stare at him and wonder what is going through his head. That kind of love that you have for your child magnifies your marriage. I feel like our family as a whole is becoming so much stronger and more loving in general by bringing a baby into the picture.

How do you and Carlos keep up with everything?

Carlos is so unbelievably amazing and a very hands-on dad. He really helps takes the burden off of me. The one thing I think is really awesome is that we really tag team. It gives us each a bit of time we need away from either our daily chores or from Ocean. We'll start cleaning together if Ocean is asleep, and then when he wakes up, I'll go feed him while Carlos keeps cleaning. And then we'll switch off. Being a parent is hard, so every so often we need a breather.

How do you balance baby, work, and managing your home?

The one thing that Carlos and I try to do is make it fun, which is why we were really excited to team up with Clorox. I'll be honest, Carlos is much more of a clean freak than I am. I need a little motivation. I sometimes get overwhelmed because I feel like I have to clean the whole thing, but you don't have to do that. Instead, make a plan and take it one room at a time, especially when you have a baby. You don't have tackle everything at once.