On Daily Routines, we profile successful leaders, entrepreneurs, artists, business executives and athletes to explore their routines, schedules, habits and rituals.
In between managing his 35 worldwide restaurants, yelling at wide-eyed cooks on TV shows, starring in reality TV hit shows, Hell’s Kitchen and MasterChef, and building his media empire, Gordon Ramsay also likes to compete in Ironman triathlons twice a year.
“My father passed at 53 with a heart attack. My brother’s an addict,” Ramsay said, talking to Delish about the motivations behind maintaining an active lifestyle. “So I’ve got that scare-mongering going on, on a weekly basis, that I need to stay fit.”
There’s also the fear of the cooking industry consuming him, like it has so many of his peers. “I don’t want my industry to kill me. I know how unhealthy chefs are at the top level,” he told The Daily Mail in 2018. “Stress. Suicide. There’s a big downside to cooking loads for a living. It’s lethal: from obesity to heart attacks to cocaine habits.”
Ramsay’s intense persona on TV is no act, and is indicative of his daily routine. On most days, he’s up at 5am, working 15 to 16 hour days and juggling multiple time zones at any given moment. During a 2015 reddit Q&A, when asked how he manages work-life balance, Ramsay provided a breakdown of his typical working day:
I work my ass off – you know, 15, 16 hours a day. I quite enjoy the time difference when I finish, for instance, last night we were taping Master Chef until 9 or 10 PM at night, I’ll have a quick bite to eat, and then I’ll call the UK at midnight – because come midnight LA time, West Coast time, it’s 8 o’clock in the morning. I’ll say good morning to the kids, I’ll catch up with my business in London, and then from 2-5 o’clock, I sleep, get up, go to the gym, and then start my day again.I am Gordon Ramsay. AMA. | Reddit
To cater to his demanding lifestyle, as well as maintain his health, Ramsay keeps a close eye on his diet and exercise. For breakfast, he’ll usually keep it simple with a bowl of oatmeal. During the reddit Q&A, Ramsay described his go-to oatmeal recipe:
“The night before, put 3-4 bananas in the oven on a pilot light. And the next day, squeeze the bananas into almond milk, bring it to a boil, then add the oatmeal and dried cranberries, and you’ll have the most amazing oatmeal for breakfast.”
When it comes to the rest of his meals, Ramsay likes to stick to grazing on small dishes throughout the day. “I like the Asian approach of four, five meals a day—small meals—because by the time I get to an entree, I’m full,” he explained to Delish. “I like eating small bits and moving on. I’m pretty picky on that front.”
For his Ironman training, Ramsay will train up to 5 days a week; swimming on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, then putting an 8-hour day on Sunday, which includes an 180 kilometre bike ride and then a 10-15 kilometre run after that.
With a bedtime of 2am, Ramsay averages about 3 hours of sleep every night — similar to Dwayne Johnson’s daily routine, who survives on 3 to 5 hours. It’s certainly an intense schedule, but Ramsay balances it out by backing off on the weekends — Saturdays and Sundays are strictly no work days.
My flagship restaurant in Chelsea has never been open on a Saturday and Sunday – it’s never been open on a week-end, because I thought if we’re going to do this, I’d like to do this properly, so my staff needs time off. So I work hard, but I give myself time off on the week-end. I cut it off, and power down for 48 hours.I AM GORDON RAMSAY. AMA. | REDDIT
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