Country icon Kenny Chesney is a busy man. Last summer alone, he performed to a crowd of 55,000 at the Rose Bowl, 58,000 at MetLife Stadium and 54,000 at Mile High Stadium — damn. And these shows weren’t nice, quiet evenings filled with acoustic guitar-laden ballads, they were two hour spectacles full of non-stop movement.
In order to perform such sets, Kenny has to make sure his physical fitness and stamina are up to par. For him, working out, eating right and consistency play a heavy role in his ability to put on a good show.
“I felt better on stage than I’ve ever felt this past summer,” he told GQ. “I wasn’t feeding my body negative things. I wasn’t killing myself in the gym, but working real hard when there. When I was 27, I didn’t have to make those decisions. Now I do. If anything takes away from me being able to do that, it’s not in my life anymore.”
So, basically, we could all use a little advice on being fit from Kenny Chesney.
5 Ways to Stay Fit According to the Fittest Man in Country Music, Kenny Chesney:
1. Get a fancy treadmill.
Kenny recently bought a Woodway treadmill called the Curve and he loves it.
“There’s no plugging it in. Your body does the work and moves the belt. Walking on it is hard, much less sprinting. Running on the Curve got me in better shape than I’ve ever been in.”
2. Don’t drink beer.
Wait, what? Kenny doesn’t drink beer?
“I didn’t drink out on the road, which might surprise some people,” he explained to GQ. “Once I make up my mind to do something, that’s what I’m gonna do. I have that mental makeup. I can go down and hang out on the boat in the island and stay for an overextended vacation, enjoy it, then come home and cut it off.”
3. Make a calendar for yourself.
Every year, Kenny puts himself on an annual workout cycle.
“After New Year’s, I put it on lockdown. I train hard starting the first week of January. I’m pretty tunnel-vision: I know what it takes to do what my body wants when I get up on stage,” he said. “Last year we worked every Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday from the end of March to the end of August, without a weekend off.”
After the tour winds down, Kenny takes a much needed break, but then it’s back to business as usual.
“I give myself a break for two or three months to do whatever I want. My body needs it. And after the first of the year, I put it on lockdown again.”
4. Set a weekly routine.
And stick to it.
“I don’t work out any more than an hour,” Kenny said. “But that hour is intense. There’s not a lot of bullshit going on; we get it done and get out. I’m not the kind of person who stays in there for two hours a day—I got too much to do.”
This is an example of Kenny’s weekly routine when he’s on tour:
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday: He engages in intense morning workouts.
“I wasn’t lifting heavy to try to gain size,” he says. “I was trying to lean down and gain flexibility.”
Thursday: This is his hard cardio day.
“We worked at keeping my heart rate up. When I left the gym, I was still burning calories.”
Friday: Thanks to setup, Fridays are days off, but if there’s time, he’ll visit the local gym.
“I’ll do that by myself—I can walk between the raindrops pretty good. But if we’re in a small market and there’s only one gym, that can be tougher.”
Saturday : He does light cardio in the morning and then counts his performance as cardio at night.
“There’s gotta be a way to measure it with all these gadgets we have now, but I’ve never done it,” he said.
Sunday : Sundays are cheat and rest days.
In order to really be in shape and be healthy, eating and eating right is important. Knowing your body and how much food you should consume is very important.
“I load up on carbs early. I don’t eat any after 5:00, whether on or off the road,” he said.
The key, he says is planning your meals and stick to a pattern.
“I’m an emotional eater. We all are. I was brought up not eating this way. And when you have that kind of focus on your diet, there’s no social life (laughs). Your friends, your girlfriend, everybody wants to go out and have drinks. But when you’re on this kind of specific diet, you look kind of weird when you go to a restaurant and bring your dinner with you, because it has to be measured,” he said. “Even if you order something really healthy, nine times out of ten it’s full of salt, and stuff you would not make at your house. And I don’t want to ask the waiter if everything’s made of coconut oil. That’s weird.”
This is an example of Kenny’s weekly meals when he’s on tour:
Breakfast: Kenny eats five egg whites scrambled with jalapeños, tomatoes, sweet peppers, and cilantro along with a small portion of fruit and a Quest Bar.
Lunch: He’ll eat a piece of salmon or chicken with vegetables and brown rice.
Dinner: Dinner is also salmon or chicken paired with vegetables, but this time cucumbers and tomatoes are added.
Snacks : “If I get hungry, I’ll eat some raw almonds now and then. It’s fat, but it’s good fat.”
After the show : “Instead of eating pizza and drinking beer, like I used to do 15 years ago, I’ll mix two scoops of chocolate protein powder in water—not a protein shake with a lot of carbs, just pure protein. When I’m in the zone, that’s my fourth meal of the day.”
Sunday night’s cheat meal: After getting home from a show, Kenny will treat himself to some Italian or Mexican cuisine.
“It helps you mentally. You have to allow yourself time to get away. I do anyway. I grew up in an area where everything revolves around food,” he said. “Once you feel that kind of love coming at you, it makes not eating bread worth it.”
Well, if this whole country music thing doesn’t workout, Kenny could always be a personal trainer.
Image Source: CMA