The actress and fitness fanatic, best known for playing Alice Cullen in the Twilight movies, and who now stars in the DirecTV crime drama Rogue, is hooked on an intense climbing routine that she credits with making her stronger than she has ever been. “It’s an insane full-body workout that gets your cardiovascular levels very high very quickly,” Greene, 29, says. “It really pushes you, but it’s so fun that it’s addictive.” She’s not exaggerating—she just completed a challenge in which she did the workout every day for 31 days straight. “I wanted to increase my strength and endurance and prove to myself that I could do it,” she explains. Three philosophies guided Greene to her victory and continue to help her move forward toward even bigger fitness goals—and the good life in general. She runs us through them.
Be a morning person, even if you’re a natural night owl
Greene swears by exercising first thing in the a.m. “To fit my workout into my day, I have to be out the door early. That means I don’t have time to think about whether I’m tired or to come up with excuses,” she says. “And I’ve found that when I exercise in the morning, I have a much more productive day. After I finish my workout, I feel as if I can conquer the world.”
Eat for energy, but make sure you cheat
“What I put into my body has a huge impact on the results I get out of it,” Greene says. “Eating keeps my metabolism cranking.” She mainly eats fish, chicken, and vegetables; swaps spaghetti squash for pasta and cauliflower for mashed potatoes to keep from feeling sluggish and bloated; and drinks green juice. “These foods energize me for my workouts,” she explains. But she also builds splurges into her diet. Her favorites: grits (she loves them so much that her parents gave her a package of them as a stocking stuffer last Christmas), cheese, and a glass of red wine with a piece of Mast Brothers Sea Salt Chocolate.
Give yourself a break
Greene balances her intense fitness sessions by hiking with her dogs (she has four) in the hills near her L.A. home. She also loves to surf and plans to learn how to parasail this year. “Getting outdoors is so refreshing to me,” she explains. “It’s a combination of the exercise, soaking up my surroundings, and clearing my mind. It’s my happy place.”