Pat Kiernan: The Real-Life Diet of the NY1 Anchor Who’s Mastered Waking Up at 2:15 A.M.

Pop Culture

I don’t. I don’t like what coffee does to my digestive system. I also don’t like anything hot, though it’s not like I switched to iced coffee or anything like that. If I ever felt I wanted caffeine, I would drink Coca-Cola. I used to do that on this shift when I was in my 30s and 40s and my metabolism was better.

Why’d you stop?

I tried to get smarter about it. Around the time that Mike Bloomberg tried to put in the soda tax, I did roughly 1,700 stories on how bad sugary beverages are, all while I’ve got a Coke on the side of the set. I started to rethink things. It had always been a reflexive action throughout my morning: On this commercial break, I’m going to walk over to the vending machine and have a Coke. It proved to be unnecessary.

What’s the next meal after the Shreddies?

I used to make lunch at home around 11:00 A.M., but the show got more complicated, so my days start earlier and go later now. There’s one place downstairs, the Hale and Hearty, that will serve their lunch menu the minute they open at 10:00 A.M. You can line up there and see most of the morning crew ready to eat.

And then you head home for a nap? When is that, exactly?

1 P.M. to 3 P.M. is the ideal nap for me.

When you wake up from that, are you more or less on the same schedule as the rest of us?

Yeah. I like to have a 6:30 dinner. I have to be conscious of the fact that dinners can go late. Almost always when somebody says, “Hey, can you do dinner on Wednesday?” I say, “I can, but can it be 6:30 to 8:30, instead of 8:00 to 10:00?”

I used to adamantly say that a meal is not a meal unless there is a meat component to it. That’s still most nights, but now there are nights when there’s something plant-based. And I love dessert, anything based in chocolate. I don’t have to eat a whole dessert, but I like a sweet finish to my meal, and the sugar keeps me awake more than it used to.

Do you have time for exercise?

I’ve gotten to be much better behaved on that front. My wife is very committed to scheduling her fitness classes and so forth. I would see that, realize it was a good model, but never find or make the time. Now, it’s partly out of necessity with being older, and partly out of finding ways to enjoy fitness that I’ve embraced more.

I have a road bike and ride that regularly on weekends in Amagansett. Related to that, I find a spin class is a great way to get a quick workout in the city. My wife and I also see a trainer named Kira Stokes. Kira has a bunch of celebrity clients, but separately does a small number of group classes during the week. She’s really good and has small enough classes that you feel like you’re getting the almost-personal training level.

We’ve also started participating in mini-triathlons. I’m not a good swimmer, but it’s half-a-mile, 20 minutes in the water, and I can deal with that. You’re not doing anything for more than 45 minutes, or whatever. Those aren’t fun in the moment, but having a goal like that—and the goal, by the way, is not to win or even place, the goal is to not suck and drown—it’s been very useful in that you’ve set yourself up for this thing that’s going to be measured. That then forces you for all of June and July to go for a swim for 25 minutes as practice. It’s only a three-mile run, so it’s pretty easy to go and do two miles as a quick training thing. You want to be ready for it.

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