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Me and my health: Emma McMaster discusses her lifestyle


By Linda Stewart

The 18-year-old Ballynahinch student is preparing to captain Northern Ireland at the Uefa Women's Under 19 Championships which begin here next week. The province is this year's host nation. Emma has just completed A-levels in biology, home economics and PE.

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

A: On Mondays I do running sessions, like sprinting and endurance and things like that. On Tuesdays I am in the gym doing exercises - it would be things like squats, lunges and upper body work such as bench presses for strengthening and conditioning. Then on Wednesday I'm out on the pitch and Thursday is a free night. On Friday I'm back in the gym and Saturday is long distance running. Sunday is the gym again and a pitch session, both on the same day.

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

A: Probably concussion. When I was 17 I was playing football and I ran into somebody's elbow. I blacked out and then I sat up again - but I was out for 23 days. I just had to rest up while I recovered.

Q: How healthy is your diet?

A: It's pretty good. I have a lot of pasta, rice and potatoes and I would eat a lot of chicken. I'm better with fruit than with vegetables although I eat plenty of onions, carrots and Brussels sprouts. My favourite healthy food is an avocado, onion and chicken sandwich, but my weakness is my mum's Sunday desserts, especially Pavlova.

Q: Any bad habits?

A: Sleeping in and not going for a run on a Saturday morning. I'm usually quite good but it happens occasionally.

Captain’s role: Emma McMaster will lead Northern Ireland’s U19s

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

A: I don't smoke. I drink very rarely. If I had a drink it would be a West Coast Cooler but that would only be on special occasions.

Q: Do you take any health supplements?

A: No, I wouldn't take anything like that.

Q: How do you take time out?

A: I listen to music - I tend to like R&B. Or I like spending time with friends and family, watching TV or just sitting around someone's house having a bit of a gossip.

Q: How well do you sleep?

A: I sleep a lot. I go to bed about 10pm or 11pm and I sleep until about 8am. If there is something exciting to do the next day, I might have trouble dropping off, but not usually.

Q: Do you worry about getting old?

A: No. It's part of life, isn't it?

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

A: I would drink a lot of water. I would drink two or three litres of water a day, especially when I am training. I take a two-litre bottle of water around with me and then you can see how much you are drinking. You can't really tell with the 500ml bottles because it's hard to measure how much you're drinking. If I don't drink a lot of water I feel tired and I can't concentrate.

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