Spring arrived this week; someone just needs to tell Mother Nature. As the temperatures eventually go up, most of us will be reminded of our failed New Year’s resolutions to get in better shape and dread the grand unveiling. But not some of your favorite country singers. Nope.
Since many country songs celebrate overindulgence is some form or another, it’s surprising to know a lot of artists don’t practice what they preach. Kenny Chesney is known for his chiseled physique and told Men’s Health magazine in 2011, he never misses a workout. “I have to train to do my show the way I want to do it,” he says. “I’m not one of these guys that just stands there behind the microphone. I work really hard to give the fans the best possible concert.”
What about his eating habits? “I grew up with a family where everything revolved around food. I love to eat,” he says. “But I’m very conscious of what I put in my body now.” But there’s room for some misbehavior. Sunday is his “cheat day.” “I eat whatever I want,” he says. “If I want a chocolate-covered double cheeseburger, I’ll eat it.”
Earlier this month, the singer told the crowd at his Keg in the Keys show in Key West, Fla., he hadn’t had a beer yet this year and apologized for needing to be a “good boy!” Tim McGraw also infamously gave up booze and dropped 40 pounds, telling People magazine in January it was something he had to do. “I drank a lot from my point of view and I needed to stop,” the 45-year-old related.
Tim’s “Two Lanes of Freedom” tour kicks off in May. To prepare, he’s been working out three times a day five days a week and now sports eight-pack abs. Yes, I said eight pack. He does admit, “I’ll eat a cheeseburger now and then, and I love sweet tea,” but he trains and diets before he goes on the road because “it’s part of my job.”
Jake Owen, 31, says he’s learned a great deal from Kenny and Tim, both in their 40s, when he was on the road with them on the Brothers of the Sun tour last summer. “I’m just trying to keep up with those guys.”
He may have taken that to the extreme this year with the “master cleanse.” “It’s weird. I’ll be honest with anyone who ever wants to try it. I had a lot of things in my life that were bringing me down — just a lot of cloudiness,” he told CMT Radio. He’s off it now, but is sticking to healthy eating. In case you’re wondering, the “master cleanse” is a concoction of lemon juice, maple syrup, cayenne pepper and filtered water six times a day.
There’s no question all the guys have worked hard to stay fit and fab, but perhaps they should take cue from George Strait, currently on his final tour, The Cowboy Rides Away. After nearly 100 singles and more 30 albums, the “King” is pushing for Sixty for Sixty, hoping to make “Give It All We Got Tonight” his 60th No. 1 single before his 61st birthday in May.
After receiving the CRS Artist Career Achievement Award last month, Country Aircheck asked him to describe a typical day on tour. “Hmmm,” he says. “I get up and have some breakfast, then probably go back to sleep. … I don’t get out much … I’m kind of confined to the bus. Then I’ll have some lunch and do soundcheck and watch a little TV and maybe play guitar a little bit, sing a little bit, practice and just wait for the show.” He doesn’t say, but I’m thinking lunch might include a cheeseburger or two.
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