Saturday 20 January 2018

'I've a secret stash of sweets and other rubbish at home'

Opiniated: PJ Coogan of Cork 96FM
Opiniated: PJ Coogan of Cork 96FM

Edel Coffey

He says he's 'not great' at breakfast despite fronting one of the most popular morning shows on radio - Cork 96FM host PJ Coogan talks swimming, not passing up a bit of fruit, and turning 50

Do you consider yourself to have a healthy lifestyle?

I'm conscious of what's good for me and what's not, and I'm reasonably careful - but I'm not a saint! I eat reasonably well - a lot of fresh fruit, fresh fish, you know the sort of thing - but I'm fond of my pizza too! I guess I'm constantly carrying a few excess kilos, but every so often I'll decide it's time to lose that, and I usually can without too much effort.

Do you exercise regularly?

I like to swim - in fact I've just rejoined my local club after a few months' break - when I'm swimming regularly I do 1000m four or five times a week, and always try to complete it inside 25 minutes.

Do you do it willingly or begrudgingly?

Getting started is an effort - going back after a break it can be hard to get motivated, but once I get into a pattern I hate to miss a session.

What time do you go to bed?

Usually after Vincent Browne - although I'm a terror for pottering about until around 1am!

What time do you get up in the morning?

I'm generally in the shower for about 6.20am on a work day. At the weekends I like my extra couple of z's though. Sunday in particular I usually have to be dragged out of the cot!

What do you have for breakfast?

I'm not great in the breakfast department. I always have fruit, and I simply cannot function without coffee - but offer me a fry and I'm yours!


I graze a lot during the show - usually on fruit, coffee and water - but if there's chocolate to be had... So by lunchtime I'm not all that hungry but when I am, I'm partial to a toasted sarnie.


Dinner is important. I like my fresh fish, but I also eat a lot of chicken and pork. I'm fond of a spud, but often substitute rice/risotto for it. I like a curry and we'd get a takeaway once a week or so.

Any snacks?

Unfortunately, that's my downfall! I'm a grazer, a nibbler, call me what you will. I'm a holy terror for a midnight snack before bed!

Do you take any supplements?

Not really. Maybe one of those Omega things and a few extra vitamins in the winter

How much water do you drink?

At least a litre during the show every day - and maybe another two or three pints at various stages including one late at night before bed.

Do you have a skincare routine?

Soap and water and a shave every day, if that counts! I don't bother with any fancy products!

Any allergies?

Not that I know of - except the odd bout of hayfever.

Any vices?

How long do we have to talk? I'm partial to a few pints, for a start. I don't smoke, never have, but I do have a secret stash of sweeties and other rubbish at home - and don't let me alone in a room with choccy biccies! I'll also decide at a whim to chuck dinner plans and just grab a pizza - and if I'm out late, I'm no stranger to a 2am cheesburger.

If I could change one thing about my lifestyle it would be …

Well, I'm approaching 50, and I reckon I'm in pretty good condition on it, but I know that from now on, it'll get a bit harder to maintain that. I guess it's time to take a bit more care - but you know what? I'm rarely sick, I hardly ever miss a day's work through illness, and with my swimming, I'm at least half fit. I believe in the EIM system - everything in moderation, and so far at least it's working for me!

PJ Coogan presents The Opinion Line on Cork 96FM, 9am-12noon every Monday-Friday

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