How having a baby permanently changed her body image, why she never "cheats" on her diet, and the super accessible workouts she loves most

Photo: Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images

Actress Sonequa Martin-Green, 32, is known for her role as Sasha Williams on AMC's The Walking Dead, and CBS's new Star Trek: Discovery. If you've seen her on-screen moves, you won't be surprised to know that she learned how to throw a proper punch at the not-so-tender age of 5. Her fierce discipline hasn't slowed down, and it's helped her slay physically, emotionally, and professionally. Here, the five wellness pillars she lives by.

1. Stay the course.

"I have always had a close relationship with fitness. My dad was very into martial arts, so my sister and I were throwing proper punches and doing push-ups before bedtime when we were 4 and 5. I played sports my entire childhood. In college for acting, I got certified in stage fighting by the Society of American Fight Directors. I had grown up watching Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris. What they did really fascinated me. Of course, this all translates to what I do now." (Here are more badass celebrities who will inspire you to take up martial arts.)

2. Think outside the gym.

"I'm a big proponent of home fitness, especially for people with crazy schedules like mine. I do online workouts with Zuzka Light and Heidi Somers-their routines keep me strong and agile."

3. Show yourself the love.

"My son is 2 1/2 now. Having a baby made me appreciate my body more. You gain awareness of yourself as a vessel of life, and you come to value that over your body's aesthetics." (Related: Why This Influencer Accepts That Her Body Hasn't Bounced Back Seven Months After Pregnancy)

4. I'm the boss of my body because...

"...I am accepting of it and give it what it needs to thrive. I eat mainly from the perimeter of the grocery store [where the fresh food is], I breathe deeply, I exercise, and I stand up straight. As a friend once said, 'If you are successful in your life but your body is not in peak condition, then you have failed, because it's the most valuable thing you have.' "

5. Treat, but don't cheat.

"I don't want to define treating myself as putting unhealthy foods in my body. So I cheat with healthier versions of my favorite sweets, like brownies made with stevia." (Craving brownies now? Same. Try this healthy single-serve brownie recipe.)