It’s official! Former NFL star Michael Strahan will be kicking off once again – but this time as Kelly Ripa’s new co-host on Live.
Strahan will begin appearing on the show September 4, replacing former co-host Regis Philbin, who left the show last November. Apparently Strahan made more than an impression with his TV personality on FOX NFL Sunday where he became a part of the broadcast team in 2009.
Strahan, 40 – making him one year younger than Ripa – stands tall at 6 feet 5 inches tall, weighed 275 pounds while in the NFL, and is at complete ease in front of the camera. Since Ripa has been on the search for a permanent co-host, Strahan has appeared as a guest co-host a total of 15 times.
Around 59 other men were considered for the position including NY1 anchor Pat Kiernan; Ripa’s husband Mark Consuelos; SNL funnyman Seth Meyers; pop-rock singer Josh Groban; and CNN anchor Anderson Cooper.
Considering fitness and nutrition are such a large part of Ripa’s life, will Strahan be able to keep up with her active ways? We did some digging around to find out what the retired defensive end and former New York Giant is doing to keep himself in shape.
In his professional football days, Strahan followed a pretty intense program. His workouts lasted two hours and started with stretching before transitioning straight into cardio. He’d begin with 100-yard sprints and shift down to 40-yard sprints. Studies have shown that short distance sprints like these are actually better for the body than a 45 minute long distance run.
While sprinting, your VO2 max is at top capacity and the body will see quicker and better physical changes as a result. After sprinting his heart out, Strahan would move into the weight room to focus on heavy compounding movements to build as much strength as possible. Workouts would typically end with rehab sessions to work on old injuries.
These days, however, Strahan is taking a completely different approach to fitness and is strictly training to just stay in shape. His weight lifting routine is more focused on range of motion while using mostly his own body weight, instead of the heavy lifting that used to be so hard on his joints.
He also does a lot of core workouts, including one-leg ab crunches. A strong core will actually assist your body with explosive lifts. Strahan has said he ideally loves to workout in the afternoons, but with his hectic work schedule and family life, he has to take it day-by-day and get a workout in at whenever he can.
His diet is also much different than it used to be. In his NFL days, Strahan used to clean his plate at every meal. With all of the training hours he was putting in every day, he had to keep his energy levels high with a high calorie diet. But now that he’s retired, Strahan focuses on eating several small meals throughout the day and eats only until he’s full, then stops.
One of Stahan’s favorite protein shake recipes includes two scoops of protein powder, flax seed oil, glucosamine chondroitin liquid (for joint health), bananas, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, oatmeal, and peanut butter. Even for a big guy, that’s a big protein shake!
Live is taped in New York City Monday through Friday at 9 a.m. and is aired on WABC. One might think news of Strahan joining Live means there’s a sports broadcaster opening on FOX. But surprisingly, Strahan has announced he will be keeping both jobs, which means he’ll be working in his current home of NYC during the week and flying to LA every weekend where FOX NFL Sunday is filmed. Sounds like Strahan will be one busy man these days, and we look forward to seeing how he juggles it all when he joins Ripa on Live next month.
*Photos via justjared and Men’s Fitness