The Shape I'm In: Glenda Gilson, TV presenter

THOUGH she’s working at top gear, sometimes seven days a week, there is no other job TV presenter Glenda Gilson would rather do.

“I love it,” says the hardworking presenter of TV3’s Xposé and, more recently, The Driving Seat.

While hugely enjoying her career in Ireland — interviewing the who’s who from Michael Douglas, Cameron Diaz, Owen Wilson, to Justin Timberlake and Michael Bublé — she has a keen eye on what’s happening overseas.

And if an opportunity to work abroad presented itself, she’d “grab it with two hands”.

Aged 32, Gilson has been in the public eye since she was three years old, modelling for Bank of Ireland, McDonalds and Tivoli knitting patterns — a shot of her wearing a jig-saw patterned jumper won the picture of the year.

And the memory endures. “The odd time when I’m around the country I’d go in to these little wool shops, which you don’t see too often any more. They have big thick books of patterns and I find photos of myself in there,” she says.

From Dublin, her partner is entrepreneur Rob Macnaughton.

* Watch The Driving Seat, onTV3, Sunday, Nov 24 at 4.05pm

What shape are you in? 

I could be in better shape if I was in the gym all the time. I go through phases of loving the gym and then I give it a miss for a while. I’ve got to get back into it again soon. I’m lucky, I’ve got muscly genes, so you can see the results at the end of the training sessions.

Do you have any health concerns? 

No. I don’t want to even go there.

What are your healthiest eating habits? 

In the last year I’ve added a lot of fish to my diet, which I think is key. It’s great for your skin and your hair. I’ve always had a sweet tooth since I was a kid and enjoyed drinking Coca Cola — I’ve replaced it with bottles of water. I don’t eat as many sweets as I used to — as I’m getting older the taste isn’t there for them anymore.

What is your guiltiest pleasure? 

Chocolate and sugary sour jellies — I like to eat them at 11 o’clock at night, which isn’t always good for you. Then I can’t sleep. I also like bottles of Corona — it’s so fattening.

What would keep you awake at night? 

Usually when I know I have to get a flight at 5.30 in the morning.  I’m a worrier by nature — if I’ve a big interview the next day, I’ll be running it over and over in my head. Also, if I am worried about something or someone that’ll keep me awake.

Who is the person who most inspired you? 

My mum. She’s very grounded. She’s the only one who’d give me a call and say, I don’t like you doing this or that. We get on very well. She’d be a big inspiration in my life.

What is your favourite smell? 

Usually the smells that bring back memories. A baby’s powdery smell is an absolutely fabulous smell. I also love the smell of Rob.

What would you like to change about your appearance? 

There are so many things — especially on a Monday morning — but I’m not going to tell you.

When is the last time you cried? 

I am a big-time crier. I could watch a sad movie and get very emotional. I’d be sensitive. As I get older, I’ve got worse. Still to this day if my dad looked at me crooked I would be in tears. I wouldn’t like to let him down or upset him.

What trait do you least like in others? 

Jealousy — we all have it somewhere in ourselves — and I hate meanness.

What trait do you least like in yourself? 

I’m a stressor — it comes with being a worrier. I wish I had the ability to not care. The worry can eat me up inside.

Do you pray? 

I do and I don’t just pray when I’m looking for something. If I thought someone might need a prayer said for them, I’d do it. I  wouldn’t be a Holy Joe.

What would cheer up your day? 

Right now, if I knew I was going off to sit on a beach for two weeks in the sun.


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