Gabby Reece’s life appears pretty charmed. The famed 44-year-old former professional volleyball player and model (with Elle, Shape, and even Playboy covers under her belt) is totally gorgeous and statuesque at 6’3.” And she splits her time between Malibu, California, and Kauai with her surfing legend husband Laird Hamilton and their three daughters. But she swears, she’s still human.
“I don’t always feel great about myself, that’s the human condition,” Reece admits. “I started with good genes, but I work really hard. I don’t wake up and go ‘I’m so excited to eat clean and train hard.’ I still negotiate that everyday.” And Reece has struggled with the unrealistic, and often conflicting, body-size demands of her professions.
“In modeling, they’d say ‘you’re so big,’ and in volleyball, they’d say ‘be stronger and more powerful,’” she explains. “My first priority is to feel good and have energy, and be strong to protect my body.”
To do that, Reece still trains rigorously, mostly in the pool, six-days-a-week, and eats as many nutrient-packed foods as she can to keep her energy up, even creating Truition, a line of protein powders, with Hamilton.
Here’s what else she’s stocking for herself and totally human (and super gorgeous) family in Malibu right now. —Jamie McKillop
Reece and Hamilton at home with two of their three daughters in Malibu. (Photo: Gabby Reece)
I see Greek yogurt on the second to top shelf. Is that what you eat for breakfast? That’s actually for my children. They put berries or granola on it. Sometimes if I’m having a sweet tooth, I’ll have it with almond butter. I also use plain Greek yogurt to cook with. People have to be careful with yogurt because there’s a lot of sugar when it’s flavored. Always buy plain, and if you have to sweeten it, use real honey.
Got it. I see a drawer full of different looking apples. Where are those from? We got them from the farmers market near us in Malibu. We love shopping there, but everything goes bad in three days. You better eat it fast, there’s no waiting. Get it and eat it! We also got the the meat rolled up in the paper from the butcher. We try to buy a lot locally.
Sounds great. What are the veggies in the door on the left? We eat a lot of kale and green beans. There’s also a package of gluten-free bread. I will have toast occasionally. We eat a lot of veggies and avocado. There’s a neighbor who comes to train with us and brings avocados from his tree.
What an awesome neighbor! What about the lettuce in the plastic box on the shelf. Is that for salads? That’s actually baby kale. I’m obsessed with baby kale at the moment but it’s hard to find it “free.” I can only find it in the plastic containers.
Love baby kale. Do you drink coffee? I do a green tea. I like my tea cold, not as a hot liquid. My husband does Bulletproof coffee.
That’s such a huge trend these days. What about alcohol, do you drink that? You know I don’t except on a very rare occasion. I grew up in the Caribbean and there was lots of alcohol. Lots. But sometimes, with dinner, I’ll have a glass of wine.
Sounds like a healthy attitude. What’s a typical day of meals for you? I’ll have a smoothie with almond milk or hemp milk and put whey protein, maca, bee pollen, greens, and frozen fruit for breakfast. For lunch, chicken and broccoli. Maybe I’ll throw an avocado in there. Dinner is often a big salad, with some kind of side like a quinoa or forbidden rice, and sweet potato fries made with coconut oil. There’s always some animal protein, like roasted chicken or fish.
And what about your husband, does he eat pretty much the same? He’s actually a lot more disciplined than I am with what he eats, but he eats a lot more. He eats for three people. I have to fight wanting chocolate and sugar. If we go to an Italian restaurant, I might have something more bread-y than him.
What do you do when you want to scratch that sugar itch? It sounds weird, but I’ll have real honey with honey comb. I chew on wax on the comb and spit it out. —Jamie McKillop