Me and my health: Radio presenter Paulo Ross on his lifestyle
The 28-year-old, originally from Ardglass, co-presents the Cool FM Breakfast Show and sport every morning alongside Pete Snodden and Rebecca McKinney. An avid Liverpool FC fan and mountain fanatic, he lives in south Belfast with his partner.
Q: Do you take regular exercise and if so, what?
A: Yes, I've been nicknamed 'Mourne Man' on the radio show because of how much time I spend in the Mourne mountains. When not at work I'm either walking my pet dog Oscar, relaxing in a coffee shop or out rambling. Hiking is an excellent way to rack up some steps and get in some exercise. Away from radio, I care for my mum who has mental health difficulties. I find that a weekly hike is great for my physical and mental well-being.
Q: What is the worst illness you've had?
A: When I studied at university in Liverpool, I went through a period of experiencing awful stomach pains. In my final year, daily visits to A&E were a regular occurrence. The doctors couldn't figure out what was causing it. Thankfully in the end they went away by themselves. Apparently it's quite common among young people - they haven't come back since. Probably down to stress.
Q: How healthy is your diet?
A: Fairly healthy, but I do enjoy the odd treat now and again. After the radio show my breakfast is always two poached eggs with wheaten bread, bacon and avocado. For lunch I'll have a chopped salad or a chicken wrap. I enjoy cooking at home most nights. I'm pretty good at making homemade burgers and I've recently become a fan of acai bowls - really tasty. If I'm feeling lazy I'll grab a Boojum. With the amount of hiking I do it's important to fuel up with decent nutritious food for energy and recovery.
Q: Any bad habits?
A: I'll treat myself to a chocolate bar or bag of popcorn when bingeing on my favourite box sets. I'm addicted to Luther at the moment and can't wait for the finale of Game of Thrones. I'm quite conscious about spending too much time on my mobile phone. I've set myself an aim in 2019 to try and look at it less and keep it in my pocket for longer, not a new year resolution though as I always end up breaking them.
Q: Do you drink and smoke/ if so how much?
A: I'm not a smoker, I need my lungs to climb the mountains. I tried it once as a teenager but hated the taste. I enjoy a gin from time to time when celebrating special occasions or catching up with friends. The local gin market is booming at the moment which is great to see.
Q: Do you take any supplements?
A: I find supplements confusing - it's hard to tell which products can positively impact my health and which are simply marketing jargon slapped on a fancy bottle. I'm a big believer in that you can get all the nutrients you need from a healthy diet and lifestyle, although, if I feel fatigued or rundown with a cold I'll sometimes reach for a Berocca.
Q: How do you take time out?
A: I'm usually at my happiest when I'm hiking or planning a hike. It gives peace of mind, time to think about everything, or nothing at all. A hike, long or short, leaves me feeling amazing. In our world of always-on social media and smartphones, it's good to disconnect. The Mournes are my 'airplane mode'. Away from the mountains I love my box sets and nights out at the cinema.
Q: How well do you sleep?
A: I make a point of trying to get seven to eight hours sleep a night, but with an early 5.45am wake-up for the breakfast show it can be challenging.
As I get older I have definitely noticed myself waking up more often during the night. I make up for the lack of sleep at the weekends.
Q: Do you worry about getting old?
A: I haven't really given it serious thought yet - maybe I will after I turn 30. I'm starting to lose my hair. I used to think guys like James Nesbitt and Wayne Rooney were mad getting hair transplants, but now that it is affecting me, I wouldn't rule it out later in life. They are definitely becoming more common.
Q: What is your go-to product that keeps you feeling healthy?
A: Coffee. I couldn't live without it. It sets me up for the day and makes me feel energised. When it gets to 2pm in the afternoon and I have been working since early in the morning, I get that energy crash, so I love a good strong espresso. It gives me another lease of life and I can keep going for another few hours.
They say that drinking coffee has some health benefits apparently, in moderation, of course. I try and limit myself to two cups a day.