‘Below Deck’ Captain Lee Rosbach: The Real-Life Diet of the Reality Star Who Works Out Daily Even on the High Seas

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What’s your gym setup like when you’re out on the water?

It depends on the boat. If there isn’t a gym, I’ll take some weights with me or I’ll buy some when we’re docked. If there’s a local gym, I’ll hit that. Sometimes I’ll have to break the workout up throughout the day. A lot of times I take workout bands with me. I have some that are thick and braided, and you can get a serious workout in with those. I’ll use them in my room when there’s not a gym available, or I’ll go up early in the morning on deck, because I like working out outside. It just really puts you in a great frame of mind to start your day.

I almost always position myself where it’s gonna go unnoticed [by charter guests]. Or I’ll chase the camera boys out. They’re like, “Cap, I’m just doing my job!” I’m, like, “Get the fuck outta here!”

What is your sleep schedule like?

I’m a morning person. Usually I get up at six. When we’re filming, I go to bed anywhere between midnight and two in the morning. It’s not nearly enough sleep, so I try to squeeze in a power nap in the afternoon. Sleep is a premium. You get it when you can.

Does your diet change substantially when you’re on the water?

It’s hard to get my protein fill on the water, but I just eat what the chef makes. I’ll tell him that I don’t need a lot of pasta. Pasta is my weak spot. God, I love it. If I’m having a cheat day, I’m going straight for a big old plate of pasta. I mostly try to avoid large amounts of anything.

Is there anything you absolutely never eat?

Kale. It’s like somebody just cut their lawn and put it on a plate. So disgusting. There are other ways you can get the benefit of kale without actually ingesting it. In my morning smoothie, I used to add raw eggs, but my wife would get pissed at me. I said, “I’ve been doing it for years and it hasn’t killed me!” Anyway, now I hard-boil the eggs first to make my wife happy. Then I add 50 grams of protein, usually just whey, plus a banana, two cups of blueberries, two cups of strawberries, and two cups of spinach. I’ll have that around nine, and it’ll carry me through until the early afternoon. I don’t do a lot of snacking in between meals, because usually it’s something that I shouldn’t be having. When I get the urge, I’ll grab a protein bar.

Between the exposure the show gives you, the drama on set, and the wealth you’re surrounded by as a yacht captain, do you ever find it difficult to keep your head screwed on straight?

I’m a firm believer that you should dance with the girl you brought to the prom. I make a concerted effort not to change anything about myself for the cameras. If I find myself drifting in that direction, I kind of slap myself upside the head and say, “Get a grip!” You have to stay disciplined and focused, and I do my job the same way I’ve been doing it for the last 30 years.

There’s an old saying: What’s the difference between God and a captain? God doesn’t think he’s the captain. A lot of captains think they’re God. It’s hard to keep things separate sometimes, and you have to be careful that you don’t get carried away. But I make a concerted effort to be fair and firm. My wife helps me stay grounded. I talk to her every day. And before wireless cellular, it used to get quite expensive. Then she’d holler at me for calling her. Sue me!

How do you like to unwind?

With a good steak and a nice glass of Pinot Noir.

I read somewhere that you use the hot tub on boats when they have them.

Yep. The boat we have this year has a sauna and a hot tub. Last time we had a sauna, the sound techs filled it up with storage. I said, “Nope. That’s not happening this year.” I prefer a steam room, though, because you don’t have to get it as hot as a sauna, and you get that instant sweat. I love to sweat. I live in South Florida. Doesn’t bother me a bit.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Real-Life Diet is a series in which GQ talks to athletes, celebrities, and everyone in-between about their diets and exercise routines: what’s worked, what hasn’t, and where they’re still improving. Keep in mind, what works for them might not necessarily be healthy for you.


Image may contain: Ocean, Outdoors, Nature, Water, Sea, Human, Person, Sea Waves, and Trixie Mattel

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