June 4, 2007 — -- Most of America knows actress Marcia Cross as Bree, the "always perfect" housewife on "Desperate Housewives" and one of Hollywood's most beautiful stars, but when Cross was pregnant with twin girls, her body changed along with her food habits.
"I was eating for two, but really, I craved basically very nutritional foods," she said. "I mean, I would have loved a few more vanilla milkshakes, but I knew on the other side of it that I wouldn't want to have to spend months and months losing it. I still topped 190, so I was eating a lot. A lot."
Health and fitness has always been a part of her life.
"I really love and it is important to me to be physically fit, and so I'm really enjoying the process of slowly watching my strength come back, watching the scale go down," Cross said.
She has been working out with two longtime friends: Bonnie Stoll and Diana Nyad of Brava Body. They are racing against the clock to get back in tiptop shape before filming starts for the next season of "Housewives." Cross is due back on the set July 10.
"She's still got a pooch of a stomach," Nyad said of her friend. "I can say that, right? It's real life."
While Cross was pregnant, she lost a lot of strength.
"I was on bed rest, so [I'm] working back the strength in my arms and my legs and my stomach, especially, um, and my aerobic strength as well," she said.
Cross said the added incentive of being in front of the cameras wasn't her only motivation.
"You know, I actually do feel pressure to be back, you know, looking the way I did before I left. But I don't think it's just for TV, because I would feel that way regardless, because I just want to be at my best," she said. "Maybe I wouldn't worry about being quite so thin because the camera adds those pounds."
"I don't want to lose my fitness. I'm 45. I have two babies," she said. "I've got a long way to go and I want to keep in tiptop shape. There's no magic bullet."