Ewan Strydom is a South African TV presenter and model. Married to fellow model, Adrienn, the couple have two children. Baby’s and Beyond spoke to Ewan to find out more…
How do you manage to balance family life with pursuing your career goals?
My family is the most important thing to me, and my life revolves around them. I am blessed to have such a supportive wife who understands when my work takes me away from them and the odd hours that I sometimes have to work. She truly supports my career goals. I take every opportunity I can to spend as much time with them whenever I get the chance and if my schedule allows.
Did you always envision yourself as a family man prior to meeting your wife?
I never really thought about it too deeply. When I met my wife, we enjoyed our time together, loving life and travelling together. Only later on did we discuss how we would raise our kids when it eventually happened. It wasn’t a set plan at the time as I didn’t see myself as a dad and family man. But that changed overnight when we had our first child, Kean.
How did you meet your wife Adrienn, and how did you know she was the one?
We both had modelling contracts in Thailand, where we saw each other in a nightclub, and I was instantly attracted to her.
We spent time together with friends. I didn’t have her contact number but managed to source it from her modelling agency. Our first date was a group movie date with all our friends as I was too nervous to be alone with her.
We sat far apart from each other in the cinema. Being a gentleman, I called a cab for her afterwards and as she was about to drive off, our eyes locked, and we both knew this was it! I knew this was the women I wanted to spend my life with. We started dating shortly thereafter, travelled together for a while, and then moved back to South Africa, got married and started a family.
What have been the greatest changes to your life since becoming a husband and father?
Growing up as a man and appreciating what I have in my life with regards to my family. I have become much more selfless and everything I do I want to do for those that are near and dear to me; my wife and my kids.
t’s not something I can really explain but being a husband and father made me realise that everything else that I stressed about became so minuscule compared to the task that I have as a dad. I strive to be a loving father and husband and to raise well-mannered children. It’s my biggest blessing, as is experiencing the world through their eyes.
What are your tips for keeping a marriage strong?
Everyone has their own recipe. Everyone does as they see fit to keep a marriage strong. In our case as we do life, we learn from each other every day. We experience with each other.
For us it is really about gaining a deep understanding of our significant other. Knowing each other inside and out. It’s always taking each other into account. When times are stressful and difficult, be open and communicate.
I was never one to share a lot about myself as I find that difficult. But communication plays a big role in our lives, and to be open and honest with each other no matter how hard it is and react accordingly. It doesn’t matter how difficult my day was, I want my wife to know and feel the love and support from me.
What do you enjoy best about being a dad?
I just love seeing how my boys’ experience things for the first time; like riding their bikes for the first time, with me right there coaching and teaching them. Seeing the love and trust they have for me and knowing that mom and dad are always there. Walking on the beach with them, and bodyboarding with them.
I just love the companionship between myself and my boys. Yes, I do discipline my boys, but my kids and my wife are my besties. It makes me proud being their dad and it puts a huge smile on my face.
What activities do you love doing with your sons?
I love spending time with my boys and playing TV games, bike riding, camping, hiking and body boarding. We love the outdoors.
As the father of two boys, what do you feel is the greatest lesson you can teach them?
The responsibility of a dad is huge, especially in this day and age and the world that we live in. It’s very important to me that my boys know how to be kind, respectful and gentlemen.
Yet, I also want them to be strong enough within their own character, so that they can stand up for themselves, not let people walk over them and treat them unfairly but know when and where to draw the line. They are responsible for their own happiness and their own sadness. I want them to stand on their own feet, be hardworking and chase whatever makes them happy. And love their siblings and their parents.
Health and fitness are a large part of your life. What are your top tips for staying in shape and healthy?
I make it a top priority to get into some sort of a routine knowing I am going to train every day, or at least five to six days a week. My wife and I have our routine where we train together in the morning. I value it so much and it is a special booking in my daily schedule. I’ve learnt that if I don’t feel well or look after myself and feel comfortable in my own skin, then I won’t be able to do my job properly.
Over the past few years in particular, many people have been under a lot of pressure. What advice would you give to people about an active lifestyle helping mental well-being?
For people who exercise and care about their health, I cannot tell you enough how much it helps me to clear my head and gets the good endorphins flowing. Looking after your health and keeping fit by working out, even when you are facing tough or stressful times, helps to clear your head and gives you a different perspective on life. Motivation is good, but it is ultimately discipline that makes motivation flow.
What would you say is the best part of being you?
If I take a look at my journey and the road that I’ve walked; what I thought back then and what I was capable of, to what I know now and what I am capable of now, blows my mind. I am blessed, I am happy to be doing what I do. Although it is sometimes gruelling and difficult, I know I am blessed, and I love what I do.
Model, presenter and fitness guru. What drives you to continuously diversify your career, and what is next on the horizon for you?
I happen to do what I love and for me it’s about experiencing and learning as many new things as I possibly can. As a result, I agree to a lot of stuff that scares me. In fact, I just said yes to something now that scares me to the ends of this earth; but I have learned that if I don’t put myself in uncomfortable and testing situations, I’m not going to grow, and I am not going learn.
I do it deliberately because I know if I take on something, irrespective of how stressful and worrisome it might be, I show up and get the job done, and do expertly, and that is a big thing.
What drives me is doing as many different things as I can, given the time that I have. But the main driving force is my family as I am doing what I am do for them.
Snapshot of Ewan Strydom
Typical day in the Strydom household: Get kids ready for school. Go the gym with Adrienn and have breakfast together. The I go to the studio for my show from noon until three, and depending on my schedule, I may attend a photo or video shoot. Maybe have a braai; I just love spending time with the family.
Favourite band: I have many favourite bands, but I do love and support SA artists.
Favourite food: Braai, burgers, pancakes, pizza and sushi.
Favourite movie: Comedies, action, action comedies.
Best experience: Our trip with our first born to Mauritius. We then did a family cruise to Mexico and the Cayman Islands. It was fantastic experience. Our favourite camping spot is our annual getaway to Porterville, which is always a highlight for us as a family.
Biggest ambition: To continue working hard, have a long career doing what I love and being able to travel with my kids and wife. I want my kid’s to experience different cultures and show them the world.