Ed Sheeran: ‘I loved chicken wings, wine, beer, and I never exercised’

Coldplay at O2 Shepherds Bush Empire

I’ll admit that I’ve never really been a fan of Ed Sheeran as a celebrity/person. His music is okay, but I just have that thing where I’m always like “ugh, that guy.” Maybe I was wrong about him though – while I usually go with my gut, perhaps there should be periodic reappraisals. Maybe Sheeran isn’t a whiner who makes a living off of his “normal guy” cred. Maybe he actually IS pretty normal and down-to-earth. All I know is that I sort of enjoyed his interview with the Sun – he talks about how lonely he used to get when he toured, how his weight ballooned from too many chicken wings and how fatherhood changed him completely. Some highlights:

He gained so much weight when he toured: “Since becoming a dad I’ve become quite clean-living. But I think actually taking time off and not being on tour was the worst thing for my health because I would drink every single day. I stopped three months before Lyra was born because I was determined I was going to be the person to drive my wife to the ­hospital. I was 15-and-a-half stone at my peak and I think I’m ten-and-a-half now – I was big, it really showed. I had a 36 waist — now I’m down to 28. I always knew I was big, but I knew why I was big too – I loved chicken wings, wine, beer, and I never exercised.

How he maintains his weight loss: “I do still do all the things I love. I drank wine yesterday, I just didn’t drink two bottles of it. I don’t ever want to ‘quit’ anything either. Because I feel like if you totally try to quit something at some point you’ll probably end up starting to try and binge it again.”

Cherry’s pregnancy: “It was when Cherry was pregnant the penny dropped. Lyra has been the biggest motivation in terms of detoxing my life, and I think it’s a change everyone needs to go through if they’re a parent.”

Quarterlife crisis: “I think this album is a bit of a quarter-life-crisis album. I spent my 20s travelling the world, no responsibilities, playing shows and having fun — and then suddenly things changed. I got married, I became a father, and I turned 30, and I remember that moment and suddenly feeling, ‘I can’t do those things any more’.

Becoming a father during the pandemic: “We didn’t have any help at all because of the pandemic – it was just me and Cherry — but I never wanted to be someone who just handed a baby over. We do have one girl who has started recently to help us out now that I’m back at work. But that has only been over the last three weeks and I’m still making sure I’m there each morning and night, even if I have a gig or something. I don’t know why you’d have a kid and then just hand it over to someone.

How he tries to help: “When Lyra was born, I’ve never felt more useless as a man – even in the hospital it’s all out of your hands. So when Cherry was breastfeeding I was like, ‘Well what can I do?’ And the thing men can do is just do all the nappies and cooking, so that’s what I did. I grew to enjoy it, it’s the one thing that made me feel needed in a situation where I otherwise didn’t really feel needed – so I became an expert nappy-changer. Cherry jokes that she’s changed like three but I’m proud of that, it’s the one thing I can do, but she does literally everything else.”

He wants more kids: “I’d love more kids man, I’d love it, but it does all depend on what Cherry wants to because it’s her body. I’m really proud of Cherry as a mother. She’s such an incredible human, I’m just in awe. She did a whole Cambridge degree which she started two weeks before giving birth, new baby, and I went to her graduation three days ago at Jesus College and people were saying like, ‘How did she do this with a baby?’”

[From The Sun]

It shouldn’t be news when any man – much less a rich rock star who can take as much time off as he wants – tries to be a hands-on father with his child. And yet, it is news. And good for him. I like what he said about how it’s up to Cherry to decide whether they have more kids, and I like what he says about changing diapers and all that. As for his weight… the “stone” system confuses me but I guess he’s saying that he was over 210 pounds and he lost more than 50 pounds? Something like that, my math is probably off. I’m reminded, again, of how easy it is for men to lose weight compared to women. They’re just like “I lost 50 pounds by not eating chicken wings and cutting back on beer a bit.” If only.

2021 MTV Video Music Awards

Photos courtesy of Backgrid, Avalon Red.

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13 Responses to “Ed Sheeran: ‘I loved chicken wings, wine, beer, and I never exercised’”

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  1. Eurydice says:

    One stone is 14 pounds. So he started out at 217, lost 70 pounds and is now 147.

  2. Minnieder says:

    Love him! He respects that it’s his wife choice to have more children, she’s breastfeeding (totally support that) and he’s handling baby and mom care. That’s more help than my ex ever provided so good for him! He seems so down to earth, I wish only happiness for him and his family.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      @ Minnieder, I find his response in regards to having more children depends on his wife. How wonderfully supportive and he is publicly acknowledging that it’s her body, her decision. I applaud his mindset!! I wish more men had this mindset, but they may already do. I also appreciate that he seems to acknowledge that it was time for him to “grow up” while she was pregnant. Sheehan seems to be a respectful husband and father.

      As for Cherry, may I say she truly an utterly badass!! Going to school at Cambridge while pregnant and completing her degree!! Cherry sounds like a brilliant woman on top of keeping her eye on her goals!

  3. Watson says:

    I can’t stand his music, but as a person i commend him for cutting back on the booze And helping his wife out after she gave birth. Some men do nothing so it actually is commendable that he wants to be an active participant in parenting.

  4. detritus says:

    I uh, like his music.

    And he seems nice. I also was kinda on the fence but he’s grown on me.

  5. ME says:

    I didn’t know they had two year degrees at Cambridge. Was it a Graduate/Master’s degree? How on earth did she do that 2 weeks after giving birth? I guess it was on-line and Ed was home to take care of the baby? But still…wow.

    • BeanieBean says:

      I was wondering about that, too, but I don’t know when their baby was born. Was it awhile ago? And their masters programs are one-year programs, so maybe she did that. I like what he says here, she’s clearly amazing, and they look cute in their Versace.

      • ME says:

        Just googled it. Their baby was born September 2020. She started her degree 2 weeks before the baby was born. He states in the interview she just graduated. So I’m guessing she did a one year degree…so most likely a Graduate Degree?


    RE: help. I don’t have kids yet (currently planning), but I don’t get it when people talk about help right off the bat. We definitely can’t afford a nanny and we live far away from family. I think a lot of people are like oh the baby is born the grandparents will come over, or the nanny will come over- that is so untrue for TONS of people. The people who have that built-in support system are super lucky, but I think people don’t realize that- they just think it’s the standard.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      @ CROOKSNNANNIES, I fully understand your point of view. You, like millions of other parents, don’t hire help or have family members close by. It was that way for me with my second child, as I was in a new state, no family members anywhere near me and I had a cheap, useless ex-husband that had the mind set of his parents from the ‘50’s where the men do nothing with regards to home responsibilities OR children’s day-to-day needs.

      For some reason it’s become much more prevalent in today’s society as well. Thirty+ years ago when I had my kids, I knew of no one that had hired help inside the home. There are millions of families that can’t afford to hire in-home help, yet alone have the space and the money to hire a live-in. In addition to the expense, they don’t live near either family. Plus, you have the matters of financial responsibility. Now it requires a 2 income household to pay for owning a home, cars, and the actual overhead.

      It’s quite foreign to me how people do it nowadays.

  7. Margo says:

    There is a great interview w Ed on Armchair Expert podcast. He is the real deal – down to earth, funny, and very normal (surprisingly!) Love him

  8. Onomo says:

    It irks me when men say they want a huge number of kids and then I talk to the wife who says she is done /exhausted /can’t even think about it because the amount she has is overwhelming. IMHO, every man should give the answer Ed Sheehan gave, and if the couple truly wants more kids, explore adoption of children who have lost all their family or look into supporting a family which is unable to make ends meet financially, and form strong auntie/uncle/great cousin type relations to understand that a child doesn’t have to yours explicitly for the relationship to be meaningful and still expand your family.

  9. Lyds says:

    30 is a quarter life crisis if you live to 120, just saying!

    I get that everything is delayed (marriage, child-bearing, home-ownership) but I remember my parents talking about people having a midlife crisis in their 40s, which works out mathematically but I don’t think many people that age think of themselves as midlife now. My husband is in that age group and we married when he was 42 (I’m a decade younger) and in that way, I am very happy it was “delayed”; can’t imagine re-evaluating your life at a time when the kids are young and you feel like it’s just beginning!