Russell Wilson, the three-time Pro Bowler and Super Bowl champion quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks, will again host the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Sports Awards in Los Angeles, California, the network announced Wednesday. I caught up with him in early April while he was filming a promotional video for the show.
Wilson will be hosting the awards, which will air July 16 on Nickelodeon, for the third year in a row. He believes that the most rewarding part about being the host is “seeing the smile on the kids’ faces. That’s the best part because you realize there are kids all over the world that look up to you for different reasons.”
Rehearsal isn’t just memorizing lines and dances. “[It’s] a bunch of hours, but more than anything, it’s a bunch of fun,” said Wilson. He works on remembering the patterns and the order of the show. Once he is comfortable with the order, he becomes more relaxed, and it becomes very enjoyable. One of the keys to hosting is to be able to bring energy and realize that it’s for kids to enjoy.
Slime is a big part of every Nickelodeon awards show. And Wilson loves getting slimed! “As a young kid, I always wanted to get slimed,” he explained. “I wanted to know what it tastes like, what it feels like.” Wilson has been slimed numerous times as the host, and it is often a complete surprise to him. Despite getting slimed multiple times, the novelty hasn’t worn off, and Wilson said it is still so much fun to get slimed.
In addition to preparing for the show, Wilson has been very busy during this off-season. He loves to travel, but this year he has not ventured too far away from home. This is because his wife, Ciara, was expecting their first child. Their daughter, Sienna Princess Wilson, was born on April 28. Wilson explained that he had spent part of his off-season preparing to become a new father. “This is one of the best things I am getting super excited for,” he said.
Wilson has been mainly splitting time between Seattle and Los Angeles. Regardless of where he is, the most important part of the off-season for him is preparing for the upcoming football season by training six days a week.
He has posted videos of himself training on social media at the USC and the UCLA football practice fields, with “#DangerTrain.” He has been working with a personal trainer, and the workouts include lifting weights, running, watching film, and throwing the football. He has been posting these videos to share his off-season work with Seahawks fans and other football fans.
In some of his workouts, he has been training with fellow teammates, including Jimmy Graham, Jermaine Kearse, Luke Wilson, and Doug Baldwin. Even on the one day off during the week when he isn’t doing any formal workout, Wilson said that he is still doing something physical, such as going for a bike ride or stretching. Every day of the week, Wilson is preparing his body for the upcoming season by keeping active.
His diet is also something that he pays close attention to during the off-season. Wilson loves food, but he tries to eat healthy. While pasta, cheeseburgers, pizza, and steaks are some of his favorite foods, he has cut those foods out. He has met with a nutritionist to help him eat healthier and fine-tune his diet so he can play football for many years to come.
There have also been trade rumors this off-season with regards to star Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman. When it comes to rumors, though, Wilson said that he “doesn’t pay attention to that stuff.” Instead, he focuses on his own preparation. “Every time you step on the field, whether it is a practice or in the weight room, or watching film, make that the best that you do that day,” he said. “Everything counts!”
Photographs by (from top): Charley Gallay/Nickelodeon; Kevin Mazur/KCSports2016/WireImage