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John Andrew: 'I need a lot of sleep and go to bed early... I don't have much of a social life'

Me and my health

By Helen Carson

The 22-year-old, from Ballymena, is a hooker for the Ulster Rugby team. He made his Ulster debut last August alongside brother, Ricky (25), who is also a member of the squad - it was the first time the brothers had been on the same team in their professional careers.

Q: Do you take regular exercise - and if so, what?

A: Well, I do, as I exercise fairly regularly; I am in the gym four times a week as part of my training with the Ulster Rugby squad. I am also on the pitch four times a week, with a game at the weekend.

Q: What's been the worst illness you have ever had?

A: I have been very fortunate - touch wood, it stays that way. I've only ever had a few coughs and colds.

Q: How healthy is your diet?

A: My diet is a lot more healthy than it was before I joined the Ulster team. We, as a team, have all our food provided by Slim's Healthy Kitchen; they cook the food so that everything we eat has been thought out very carefully by them for maximum health benefits, and to ensure we get enough nutrition to meet the demands that playing competitively puts on your body.

Q: Any bad habits?

A: No, not really. As my food has been planned out to ensure it is nutritious and healthy, I eat well all of the time. I also know what snacks to eat to keep me in good shape.

Q: Do you drink/smoke - and if so, how much?

A: No, I've never smoked and don't drink. As I train so much, it wouldn't be a very smart thing to do - coming to training the next day after partying - I would be very tired.

Q: Do you take any health supplements?

A: As a player, I take a lot of protein, which helps with training. I also take vitamin C and zinc to help fight off colds when it comes into the winter.

Q: How do you take time out?

A: When I'm not playing rugby, I like to go out for a walk and I take the dog - that is the main way I like to relax ... or just lying about.

Q: How well do you sleep?

A: I sleep fairly well and I need a lot of sleep. I try to get at least nine hours a night, if not 10 hours, and go to bed early. I don't have much of a social life.

Q: Do you worry about getting old?

A: No, not really ... until I was asked this question - I don't really think about it. I would never consider anti-ageing treatments - I don't think it would make any difference to me anyway, so I think I will be better saving my money.

Q: What is your go-to product/habit that keeps you feeling healthy?

A: I try to drink a lot of water. There is always water about when I am training, so that would definitely be my go-to habit for feeling healthy. I always have a bottle of water with me, wherever I am.

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