He Doesn't Eat Like a Barbarian


I know it's impolite to stare, but I couldn't help it. Ralf Moeller and I were seated across from each other over lunch. Every time the "Conan" star lifted his coffee cup, I caught myself checking out his 22-inch biceps. Hell, they're bigger than my thighs. (I measured at home. The right one, flab and all, used up 21 1/2 inches of the tape measure.)

The 6-foot, 6-inch Moeller, who's in his mid-30s, maintains his Mr. Universe (1986) physique by working out at 6 a.m. nearly every day. He has one cup of coffee before putting in half an hour on a treadmill and one hour with weights for the upper body. At the end of the day he'll spend an hour on lower body work. That routine remains pretty much the same whether he's filming the syndicated TV series (seen locally on UPN) for six months in Mexico or spending time with his family in Pacific Palisades.

Moeller and his wife, Annette, who both moved from their native Recklinghausen, Germany, to Southern California in 1991, have two young daughters.

So, not only were the biceps impressive but that chest . . . .

Question: 51 inches, is that right?


Answer: Yeah, well, in centimeters, 147. But I don't measure it anymore. I don't have to.

Q: Why not?


A: I'm not on stage anymore, but since Arnold [Schwarzenegger, star of two "Conan" films], Conan has to be in shape and has to present muscles. Conan has to be more athletic--horseback riding, fighting, running and all this stuff. You know, most of the stunts I do myself because when you have close-up, they want to see your muscles and fighting. I have to run and jump in the water and fight.


Q: I'd like to hear how much you eat, but first tell me what you weigh.

A: 270. And breakfast I have my oatmeal or my fruit--pineapple is very good--or sometimes my scrambled eggs. Cottage cheese with some fruit. Lunch, I have salads, fish and some rice or chicken with vegetables. I have at least two days a week where I eat only vegetables and carbohydrates. Sometimes in the afternoon where people usually like to eat cake or whatever, I love it, too, but I eat bagels with cottage cheese and jam. Or when you need some sweet, watermelon. The watermelon, it's great--vitamins, water, everything sweet. And drink--drink a lot of water. Most of the people, they have not enough water. We have to drink at least two, three bottles.


Q: What do you do about dinner?

A: First of all, dinner has to be done between 8 and 9. Probably it will be better before 8. I love soups--soup with vegetables and chicken in it. A good dinner would be for me white fish with a little bit pasta on the side. Once a week or every two weeks, sometimes I have a steak but I don't like to have heavy meat in the late night.


Q: What's your workout like on the weekends?

A: Weekend for the family. We go hiking. Kid on my back, and then we go into Pacific Palisades and go for a hike. We go on a bicycle in Venice Beach. We go in the pool and swim. In the morning it starts already with my daughter. "Oh, let's go, Daddy." And "Oh, Daddy, I feel so sorry about your guys you're fighting with in 'Conan.' They're always skinny and small." So for sure we will have bigger guys in our second season. Tell that to the producer.


Q: What were you like as a kid?

A: I was always a kind of athletic guy. I was a guy who always, let's say, when the smaller ones got beaten up by other guys, I was always the guy who took care about it but, on the other side, he protected me. He helped me a little bit on math and things like that.


Guest Workout runs Mondays in Health.

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