Many of us have known America Ferrera to be a body-positive queen since the early days of her career, but she admits that it hasn't always been easy to inspire that kind of confidence in others. The Superstore actress appeared on a Motivational Monday episode of The Kelly Clarkson Show this week, where she spoke briefly about her journey to loving her body and the confidence she's gained since landing her first role in Real Women Have Curves as a teenager.
"I had to be in my bra and underwear and dance on camera, and I had to play this character with so much confidence about her body," she said. "And people watched that movie and gained so much confidence watching it and felt so represented. But at the same time, I was just a 17-year-old girl coming to terms with my own body image, and that was hard."
Luckily now, though, Ferrera's relationship with her body at 35 has changed. As a new mom to a 6-month-old baby boy, she explained to the host that she'd rather celebrate her body than punish it because of the miraculous things it can do.
"I've trained for triathlons starting in 2016, so when I got pregnant, I was in triathlon shape. I was very strong and healthy, and then I had a baby," she explained. "My body can do both of those things. I can train for a triathlon and my body shows up for me in the ways I ask it to, and it created life and brought this baby into the world and fed this baby. To mourn one past version of my body versus celebrating what it is now and what it did — what it did for me [and] what it did for my son — would be a shame."
She continued, "I'm just committed to loving my body and being so grateful to be in it every single day." Catch Ferrera's comments in the full clip above.