"I forgot my phone," Erin Andrews says, after settling into a chair on the patio of a restaurant in Manhattan Beach, Calif.
"Do you need to get it?"
She breaks into a huge smile behind her oversize sunglasses.
"No! I'm just shocked that I actually let it out of my possession. I'm proud of myself!"
Considering everything the 36-year-old TV personality has going onfrom co-hosting Dancing with the Stars to being the top sideline reporter for NFL on Foxan hour-long stretch without calls, texts, tweets and Instagramming is a welcome (if accidental) breather. "It's nice to have time to clear my mind. It's kind of wonderful."
Born in Maine and raised in Tampa, Fla., Erin has been working nonstop since graduating in 2000 from the University of Florida with a degree in telecommunications. In 2004, she got her big breaka reporting job on ESPN National Hockey Nightand has since become a favorite sideline reporter for college football, the NFL and Major League Baseball. She has made a name for herself by holding her own during live postgame interviews (see: Richard Sherman's viral rant last January) and by bringing witty, sometimes controversial commentary to the often predictable Dancing with the Stars proceedings (see: telling rumored couple Peta Murgatroyd and James Maslow she wants "a Dancing with the Stars baby"). We sat down with the star to find out how she maintains her energy, her enviable bodyand her sense of humor.
Your fans love that you're so outspoken. Have you ever gotten into trouble by saying the wrong thing, like on Twitter, where you have nearly 2.5 million followers?
No, I have to be very careful with that. But it's hard when somebody says something and you want to put them in their spot. I've gotten "You look like Brad Pitt" or that I look like a bird, and I'm just like, "Really?"
What's been the worst one?
I recently tweeted a photo of a David Yurman ring I was wearing, and I didn't have moisturizer on, and they were like, "Your hands look like the old lady from Titanic." But you know what? This is coming from a person whose avatar is a cat. So what do you want from me?
Did you ever worry about being a woman in a male-dominated field?
I didn't even think about it until I was in the industry and people started bringing it up. I always saw so many women do it on television. Hannah Storm, who did NBA on NBC, was a big influence. Monday Night Football's Melissa Stark showed that it was OK to be, like, really good-looking and know everything about the NFL. The first time I met her face-to-face, I geeked out and told her she was my Michael Jordan.
How do you keep your confidence when there's a lot of testosterone around?
I feel like I'm one of the guys anyway. I'm such a guy's girl that even in the relationship I'm in now, my boyfriend [NHL player Jarret Stoll] has had to say, "OK, can I be the boy?" I'm usually the only girl at the dinner table. I'm not really allowed to be a female in my world of sports broadcasting, because if you don't blend in and be a guy, you're not gonna fit in. You're not gonna be included in the jokes, and they're not gonna want to take you to the bar at night to have a drink, and you won't hear all the real stories about what's going on with the teams, because everybody will be like, "She's just a girl." If there's a 1 o'clock pickup for the game, I like to be there at 12:50 because I don't want those boys sitting in that car waiting and going, "What are you, curlin' your hair?"
How did you keep your cool during the Richard Sherman interview and aftermath, when the media went crazy?
My biggest fear during that whole thing was not asking the proper follow-up question. I was like, "I better do this well, or I'm going to be absolutely ripped to shreds by the media." I knew he was talking about Michael Crabtree, but I was thinking, Do I try to change the subject? Do I mention Michael Crabtree? And then he just kind of gave me a layup. My phone obviously blew up afterward. My friend Chrissy Teigen was like, "Oh my God, that face you made was so you." Not panicking during that whole thing came from years and years of good training.
What kind of skills help?
I feel like a spy half the time. In the NFL, we can't report on injuries until the NFL has said what the injury is, but I hear so much stuff, like, in the huddles, a player saying, "I just ripped my kneeI'm done." I've gotten really good at lipreading, and my boyfriend hates that!
What do you do to maintain your energy and mood?
Working out is a main one. I just feel bad about myself if I don't, because I like to eat, and I like to have a few cocktails. I need an hour where I can just sweat my brains out and get a break from everyone.
Do you use a trainer?
I don't, and I never have. And if I worked out by myselfbecause I'm so ADDI'd check my phone, look in the mirror and pick a zit. So I need a class because there are other people there pushing me. If I see a woman who's pregnant, or older, and she's doing more reps than me, it's like, "Wait a second..." I love Physique 57 [for which she created a workout video]I've found that changes my body the most. I've always been tall and lean, but everybody has their issues. I've got saddlebags and a rear end that was always kind of flat and wide. Physique 57 is lots of squats and stuff for your inner and outer thighs.
Have any of the athletes given you workout tips?
One NHL coach told me something I took to heart. He said, "Whenever you land at the away team's city, don't lie on the hotel bed. Grab your gym clothes and head straight to the gym. If you start watching TV, you're not gonna get up. Go on the treadmill, or just walk around."
Do you have a go-to breakfast?
I'm not gonna lieI love the all-American breakfast, with scrambled eggs, bacon and hash browns, but I can't have that every day. We do a lot of Vitamix smoothies at our house: frozen fruit, almond milk, vitamins and some peanut butter.
Any bad food habits you finally kicked?
As gross as it sounds, I used to be a soda girl. I would pound soda on the sidelines just to stay caffeinated. It's amazing how much weight I was able to lose once I stopped with those drinks.
How do you feel about cosmetic tweaks?
I've never done it, but I'm curious about all of it. I've seen great work, and I think we've all seen bad. I'm very afraid of doing anything; I feel like I would be obsessive about it, like, "Wait, does this look real?" I'm sure there will be a time in my life when I'll want to look into it, but it's just not right now.
When do you feel sexy?
Oh God. I never look at myself like that. I feel good about myself after I'm done working out, but I'm definitely not at my sexiest. I think maybe it's at the end of the night, after a football game or Dancing with the Stars, and I'm able to take everything off and just be in a sweatshirt and a pair of boy shorts. Because that's me: casual, wearing cotton.
What I'm Into Now
Celeb on Instagram
Gisele Bündchen because I'm in love with her and everything she does. You know that music video where she's in a bathing suit and singing? I was like, "Is everybody looking at this?" She's everything.
Friend on Twitter
Chrissy Teigen is hilarious. She says what I wish I could say and get away with. You can tell when she's having a bad day and she's just on a roll. She'll send out maybe eight tweets per second, and it's like, whoa.
I'm not too sophisticated when it comes to cocktails. I like beer. And I also love margaritas. Guac and margs are a great thing.
Fried foodsfried chicken, or BBQ with grits and hash browns and biscuits. Really heavy comfort food. Sooo good.
I love Farmhouse Fresh lotions, shower creams and scrubs, which smell like baked goods.
Way to Wind Down
Zone out. Have a glass of wine. Watch mindless reality shows, like The Real Housewives of Atlanta or The Real Housewives of Orange County.
Piece of Jewelry
My guy got me a Jennifer Meyer necklace. He emailed her to order it. I love the necklace, but the fact that he reached out to her and picked this one out was wonderful.