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Celebrity Diary: When my alarm goes off at 4am I'd love to roll over...then I remind myself I have this great new job

AFTER keeping my new job with 98fm quiet for so long, it was a great relief to finally begin presenting the breakfast show alongside Claire Solan.

It was a busy lead-up to getting on the air as it's been quite a few years since I did any radio.

It's something I'd always wanted to get back to and never really had the opportunity to as I was so busy with other projects on the small screen. So needless to say I was delighted when 98 approached me about coming on board with them.

I'm really enjoying it. I even had the opportunity to meet one of my childhood heroes, Elmo, this week when he came into studio for an interview.

I was actually away in the States filming until literally last week so I only had four days to prepare and get myself acquainted with the studio and all the various buttons and technical tools you need to be able to use in order to get a daily show on the air.


I know the women always rave about the joy of doing radio in comparison to TV because you don't have to worry about what you're wearing or doing the hair or the make-up or any of the rest and I have to admit, I completely agree.

While I don't have to worry too much about the make-up side of things when I'm filming a television show, it's lovely to be able to fall into studio in the first pair of jeans I throw on and only have to worry about Claire and the team seeing me.

There's been some good banter between myself and Claire so far and I'm happy to say we've had no major on-air disasters.

We had worked together previously on The Cafe so we knew we worked well together before we started. That takes a lot of the stress out of it, because obviously it's very important that you have chemistry together if you're going to be on air five days a week.

She's not afraid to tell you her point of view or make it known if she's not happy with something, which would be my attitude as well.

I'll admit the early mornings were a big culture shock at first but I'm starting to get used to them now.

There are a few minutes when the alarm goes off at 4.40 that I think I'd love to roll over and go back to sleep but then your brain kicks into action and reminds you that you have a great job to go into so that makes it easier.

As it was my first week on the new job, the old social life has been suffering this week. Whereas usually I would try and go to the gym a couple of times a week and maybe fit in a trip to the cinema or something, this week it's been straight home to the couch every evening. It was actually quite a big deal for me to stay up late the other night to watch the football. It was straight to bed after as the one thing I've been warned repeatedly about is that you have to listen to your body and make sure you get enough sleep.

Dermot and Dave, who had presented the show for many years, gave me lots of advice and were adamant that you have to just change your routine to adapt. I've also been told to avoid those afternoon naps no matter how tempting they may seem. I'm sure once I get the hang of it and get into a routine, I'll bounce out of bed every morning.

Luckily I managed to fit in a holiday before I started the new show as it was just what I needed to prepare me and relax before a busy few months.

Myself and my girlfriend Vivienne Bushell went to Sicily for two weeks and just did very little for a fortnight. We've been together a long time now and all's going well. I don't like to say too much about it though. I think it's important to keep your private life private.

On top of the excitement over the 98 show, I've also got a new television show kicking off this Sunday, when the first episode of the third season of Celebrity Bainisteoir goes out.

There's been a bit of confusion about my role on the show. I'm not actually going to be training any of the teams -- instead I get the easy job of presenting the programme.


The series is still in mid production at the moment so I don't know what's going to happen but I think it's definitely going to be one of the biggest and best yet. We've got a lot of big characters and big personalities so there's plenty of drama and competition ahead.

RTE have been great about allowing me to combine my TV work with the radio show and I'll still very much be working with them this autumn.

As well as Celebrity Bainisteoir, I'll also be presenting a new talent show called Supercrew, which aims to put together a team of performers to join Jedward in panto.

That was quite a different direction for me and I have to say I enjoyed it a lot. I'm looking forward to seeing it on the air next month.

On top of that I'm working on a new sports magazine show which has allowed me to do lots of travelling.