When pop-country heartthrob Russell Dickerson first hit the road as a touring musician, he fell into what he calls the “Taco Bell trap”—a few drinks with the band after a show can apparently become a fast food run in a hurry. But these days, when he jumps onstage in a tight white t-shirt, it’s quite clear he’s a fit guy. His current tour, All Yours, All Night, bears the name of one of Dickerson’s hit songs, which is about finishing up a long workweek and going straight to his lover’s house to do, you know, sustained physical activity. That type of high-level performance requires a lot of stamina (we’d assume) that can only be achieved with a diligent fitness routine fueled by healthy eating habits.
In fact, Dickerson says, he’s completely reworked how he does food and fitness on the road—and kept up some of those habits when he’s at home. GQ caught up with Dickerson in between shows for more.
GQ: How many years have you been touring? And what have you learned about taking care of yourself on the road?
Russell Dickerson: It’s been about 10 years now—I graduated from college in 2011 and we hit the road immediately after that. It’s definitely easy to fall into the Taco Bell trap. You know, it’s after the show, you’ve had a few drinks, you’re in a van driving to the next place, and you stop at whatever’s open. When we graduated from the van to the bus, we had a refrigerator and a microwave. That’s been the biggest help. Also, you can sleep on the bus as opposed to driving through the night. That’s huge. Sleep is one of the biggest things that you have to preserve on the road.
How’s the current tour been going?
Beautifully. There’s been some weather reschedules, but it’s all good. We’re getting our reps in every weekend. Obviously in 2020 everything was shut down and then our tour in 2021 got canceled so we’ve been champing at the bit for two years now to get back out. We love touring. My wife and baby tour with us, and we love our tour bus and we’ve missed it.
How do you approach fitness and eating—do you have a general philosophy?
Oh, deep question. I mean I think it’s just sustainability. What works for you? What can you do? For me, going to a CrossFit gym five times a week is not a sustainable lifestyle, so I’ve had to figure out what works. It’s more like, what can you make a lifestyle and not just a phase of, “Alright, I’m gonna crush it for 90 days.” I wake up, get in my workout first thing in the morning and then it’s off to the races.
What does that look for you when you’re at home?
We’ve got a little home gym set up. We have a rower, a treadmill, adjustable dumbbells, kettlebells, and resistance bands. We have NordicTrack equipment and have been doing their iFit classes, which are awesome. There’s amazing rower HIIT classes where you go hard for two minutes and then pop off and do some burpees and curls. We’ve been crushing some iFit classes. And then we also have a trainer who will come over once a week.