Jacuzzi Performance Podcast

Ep.4: Peter Andre joins the Jacuzzi Performance Podcast


Hi, welcome back to the Jacuzzi Performance Podcast. I'm Ed Baxter, and today, we're joined by the legendary Peter Andre.


Oh, legendary. I like that. How are you, mate?


Yeah, really good thanks. How are you doing?


Yeah, I'm really good. As you can see, I'm loving my bad boy behind me. It's brilliant.


You touched on it earlier, your new tub in the background, it looks very nice. Was that installed during one of your shows, is that right?


So, Euphoria Lifestyle. I knew Mike Robinson who works there, I've known him for years. One of the first times I bought a house in the UK, I found Michael, he found me, I don't know how we found each other, but it was just – a hot tub was what I wanted because a swimming pool I always associated with Australia, but I never associated it with England because the weather’s unpredictable, and I thought with a hot tub what would be amazing is you have it as a hot tub in the winter and you can have it as a cold tub in the summer. You can have it as a plunge pool, you can turn the temperature right down. So I first got a hot tub with Mike years ago and I've never gone anywhere else. Every four years or so we've upgraded or we've gone to the latest technology, and this one is just, I mean, it's awesome. I tell you why I've kept a hot tub, at first it was for me. It was just when I threw parties or whatever I wanted to do, hot tubs were cool. Then of course it became for the kids, right? They absolutely love it; rain, hail or shine. Again, because you can change the temperature, it meant that in the middle of winter if it snows you can be in a boiling hot tub at 40-degrees if you want, or 38-degrees, and then in the summer when it's 30-degrees outside you could have it at under pool temperature, you could have it really cold. So, it became for them. But then something else happened. Now that I train a lot, in my 40s I train quite heavily, I use it as a massage treatment after my training – and even though it was always there, the massage side of it, I never really looked at it like that.


Yeah, it was more just floating around in something nice.


Yeah because it's got all the jets and it does all the different muscle parts of your body, so for me, it's a game-changer. Now for training I use that as part of my routine. It also happens to be a great thing for the kids who absolutely love it. So basically, for me, it's a game-changer. It's one of those things that when I first got it my dad said 'why would you get a hot tub? Will you ever use it?' and years later he goes to me 'I must admit, I never thought you would.' He rings me from Australia, he goes 'are you going in again?' I'm like 'yeah, Dad’. For England, this for me, is perfect. The only other one I'd go for is probably the exercise pool which is slightly bigger. That would be amazing for training because it pushes against you.


Touching on what you said there about training, you said you're 25 years old now. You definitely don't look it.


47 I am. Can you believe it?


This training side of it, is this something that you've picked up now and you're like, 'I can't get enough of it’, because once people get that fitness bug – CrossFit, road cycling, whatever it is – people just get addicted, don't they?


Well I've been training since I was 14, actually even a bit younger. I was really skinny as a kid and I got picked on a lot because I had black curly hair, a big nose, an English accent. I was skinny as a rake and I was living on the Gold Coast, right? Everyone was blonde haired, blue eyed, beautiful looking Aussies. So I used to go to the gym and try and do some boxing. I used to do sit ups but I was too skinny to lift weights, so all I did was sit ups and boxing; sit ups and boxing, and then I did kick boxing. Eventually I started getting abs and I loved it, and then fitness just took over my life for all of my 20s, and then in my 30s I was like 'ugh, I've been doing it for too long. I just wanna chill’. Then in my 40s I found a new love for it again, but I've on-and-off trained all my life, and the thing is, I love eating whatever I want. I love eating chocolate, I love eating pizzas, I love going to Maccas – but I also love healthy stuff. I mix the food, healthy and junk, but where I counter it is training. I train hard. I do sprint training, I do HIIT training – I guess, is what we used to do as kids, but I never knew it was called HIIT training. It's a lot of stop-start, which swimming is of course.


Yeah, so that’s the thing I found. I ended my swimming career just after the start of lockdown because – you know when you go without something and you think ‘actually this isn’t for me anymore’. I’m used to doing 20 hours in the pool a week, five gym sessions – so five hours lifting or circuit – and then stretching, which you wouldn’t consider exercise, but it’s still a form of being active and looking after your body. So I’d be doing 30-35 hours a week, and that was my routine,  that was my life from age – obviously it wasn’t that intense when I was 13 – but 13, 14, 15, and about age 18-22, that was all I did, and there was no sessions missed or anything like that. But now I don't swim, the last thing I want to do is exercise, and I want to eat, like you said there, I want to eat anything I want… but I still want to have abs and I still want to have biceps. That is the hardest thing for me. I can't motivate myself to do it.


Yeah, but I think give yourself a break. Your body will take years to look bad, so to speak, if you're going to say ‘bad’, because your body is conditioned for so many years. But I tell you what, even if you have a break for a couple of years or whatever, you'll get that bug and your muscle memory will be so unbelievably on it. In no time, you’ll be like 'oh my god’.


I hope so.


The only thing I recommend to people is, instead of worrying about everything you eat all the time, just somehow keep active, because I tell you what, it's good for your body, your brain and plus I always say to people; they say 'yeah but surely you need to eat well as well'. I'm like 'well, yeah I do a lot of the time. Like in the day I'm pretty good with what I eat, I have protein pots and that, but at night I'll eat anything. I don’t care’. They said 'but surely it defeats the purpose of training' and I said 'no because training, what it does is over time, any form of exercise, over time you end up making better choices in food’. For example, if you just did a workout and someone said 'let's go to McDonald's', you'd be like 'nah, man. I want to have a protein shake' or 'I'm going to have this', but then later on in the night you might go to Maccas. If you weren't training and someone said at lunchtime 'let's go to Maccas', you'd be like 'hell yeah, I'm going to go', so what I'm saying is that it doesn't mean you stop eating all the stuff you love, but you just end up having it less. Instead of having it twice a day you might have it once a day. Do you know what I mean? You just end up making slightly better choices, and so training for me is key.


So for you guys, I've seen you getting active with the kids, because like you were saying there, you've got a passion for fitness and keeping active. Have you dragged them along or did they want to jump on the bandwagon as such?


Well, Junior’s obsessed with football. He's 15 and he loves football, so he loves fitness. My other kids, yeah, I think they just saw that dad's doing it and they're like – they should join in, and they love it. I think it's me trying to get the kids active because, again, I think there's so much focus on what kids should eat and shouldn't eat – too much. When we were kids, our parents didn't say, 'no, you can't have a donut. No, you can't have pudding. No, you can't have that’. They would be like 'you go outside, play in the garden and when we're ready for dinner we'll call you in'. You're out there playing for hours, so you're burning so many calories without realising it, and then when you eat, you're not worried about; 'are my kids eating?' You do worry – you don't want them to eat bags of sweets all day, every day – but you're less worried about what they eat because they're keeping active and generally they're not inside eating sweets all day because they're outside playing.


Just touching on your hot tub earlier – as everyone watching this can see from looking behind you – that isn't just a tub, because everything these days is smart; smart watch, smart phone, smart TV, smart everything. That's a smart tub, isn't it, if I'm not wrong?


It's a smart tub, man. I mean it doesn't talk to me, I wish it would. It doesn't make my coffee, but what it does do is – you've got Alexa, you've got all the Bluetooth control, and what I love is on my phone. So say, for example, we wake up in the morning and it's pouring with rain, right? The day before it was boiling hot and you had the temperature low and it's pouring rain and you're thinking 'I can't be bothered going out, getting all dressed up to go and change the temperature' – you just do it on your phone inside and then within a couple of hours, I think it's a degree every half an hour or something, it changes. You can have it from cold to hot in a few hours. In the morning you've done it on your phone and then by the afternoon you're in there. It's things like that. It's these smart tubs, man. It tells you when you need to change your filters on your phone, it gives you all these alerts. It's really good. I could even do my shopping list from in there. What it won't do is go and pick up my shopping, which I'm a little bit annoyed about, but I think the next one…


You're going to have to get the next version from Mike.


But it gives me a massage so it can't be smarter than that.


Yeah, exactly. So one of the things I've picked up from you is some similarities. For me, high performance means training; it means eating right, sleeping right, resting – and that's what I think the mould of high performance is, but you're high performance in a completely different world. You're at the top of your game in show biz, in reality TV. Do you see any similarities in terms of – I don't know if you've spoken to athletes before, who wake up at 5am to go and get in a pool or go on a running track, but you're waking up at 5am to film a show or something.


Yeah, it's really interesting you say that because I've always been hard on myself with training and people have gone 'but you're not an athlete', and I'm like ‘yeah, I know’, but because I did the videos all those years ago, you kind of want people to see you in real life and not go ‘that's the guy that did those videos’.


I don't think they do that.


No and I always felt really scared that someone would see you in real life and they'd be like [pulls face], so I always wanted to keep it going, and in the meantime it made me feel better and I thought 'well, actually I feel great exercising’. But you're right, because you look at someone like David Beckham who's in great shape, he's really thin and he's athletic, but he's an athlete, he's a footballer – and I keep forgetting that it's okay. I do put that pressure on myself of being an athlete and I'm not an athlete at all. I'm hopeless at sport.


I think that's the thing though, isn't it? It doesn't matter what world you're in, if you're sport, if you're showbiz, if you're journalism, whatever it is – if you're at the top of your game, you've got to have that attitude. You're saying there you're hard on yourself and that little bit not good enough is nowhere near good enough. It's just the same in a different world, isn't it?


It's really true, and I guess the point is that it's good to look at people that are athletes and take from them, because that's how success is, by pushing yourself – but the other thing too, is that when you have an athletic attitude, so to speak, when you think you're not good, your standards are different to how other people see you. Say you did a swim and everyone is going 'oh my god, that was amazing’, you go 'that was my worst swim' – your worst swim is still fantastic. My wife, Emily, she's a doctor, but when she was at university I remember her wanting certain results for her exams, and she'd come back – this is when I remember meeting the family – and she'd say, 'oh, I didn't do very well in my exam’, then she'd get the results and it would be like, anyone else would dream to get those results, and that's because she had that mentality. I think you're right. It's a good mentality to have but what you don't want to do is be too harsh on yourself so that you don't enjoy life, because that sucks.


When I started to hate swimming, swimming had been my life forever, and I think when you've got something like that in your life, it's a constant. If you've got family problems – swimming is there. If you've got friend problems – swimming is there. And when I hated that, that's when dark times came for me. Do you mind going into what triggered it for you?


Basically, I don't know what happened, I was a happy kid. I got bullied a lot, like really, really bad. Racial abuse, tied to fences, beaten. I mean bad. It was a horrible time, but what I learnt from that was years later, I saw a lot of those people again, and they were like 'I'm so sorry I was like that'. They're not like that at all now. I went to therapy, I went to different doctors, tried different medication and it took me years. It took well over 10 years to overcome it, but I'm living proof that you can come out the other side. Man, I did, and I'm a different person now. I'm back to that half-full kind of guy. I don't do daily mantras, I don't get up and go 'I am this’. I don't do any of that, but the therapy made me understand that it was a part of my life and it just got me through it. I think therapy is amazing, I really do, and for me it was a combination of therapy and medication. For some people medication might not work, but for me it did. It's a long process but if you want to beat it, it's beatable. It is.


Cheers for that. That's a great story, I love that. It's just hearing about that kind of positivity and putting a positive spin on everything after hard times, that's what people live for, isn't it? To hear stories like that, I guess.


Well thanks, man. I'll tell you what, you guys in your 20s now are making us look bad. You're all in good shape and you're making us go 'right, we need to stick to it'. No, I appreciate your time. It's really nice to speak to someone that's a completely different age and that has similar aspirations of wanting to be great at something, but then also having a crossroad of not knowing where you want to go, and I think that's great, man. It's a good place to be, to actually take some time out and go 'I need to re-evaluate.' You've done so much conditioning in your body, your body is going to be great for years, bro. Honestly.


Just finishing off, when we've spoken to the other guys, we've mainly had athletes on so far and we've said 'what's your performance tips for your sport', but for me, I think this is our fifth podcast now, and I'm starting to get the hang – I hope – of hosting a podcast.


No, you're doing great.


You’re filming your own show, how do you host? Give me some tips.


How to host? I think you're doing a great job, man, because not only are you asking appropriate questions, but when someone then gives you an answer, you go on that lead. One of the things I was always told when I present is, you can have 5 questions that you have to ask somebody, but it's no good you asking them a question, they answer it, and their answer requires a follow-up but you just go to the next question. It's a really important thing. So for example, Mark Ronson. I interviewed Mark Ronson and I asked him a question that was about music and then he went into something else, and at that point they're in my ear going 'ask him the next question' but I thought 'but he's just said something that requires me to act like I've actually listened to him’. I went 'do you know, that's a really interesting point, Mark, because when you did that, how did you feel?' Completely not the question I was supposed to ask and it led to something really good, so that's what you do, man. You listen and when you do that, that's it, mate. That's a winner.


Thanks for that. I loved that, I’ve had great fun.


Mate, keep doing what you're doing, bud. Get yourself one of these bad boys.


Thanks very much for joining us, Peter, and we’ll see you on the next episode.