Through the years, Tim McGraw has become the template for feel-good anthems and cowboy hat-wearing ways. His music, above all, has connected to millions of fans across the country, beginning with his first charting hit in 1992 with "Welcome to the Club" (off his self-titled debut album). It wasn't until his second project, with the adventurous "Indian Outlaw" lead-in, that took him to the superstar level as one of the most promising male vocalists of the time. Since then, of course, he's charted countless No. 1 hit singles and subsequent chart-topping albums.
But you'd be shocked to learn that early on, at the naive age of 19, he was rather shy to get up on stage. "Early in my career—I think I was 19—I was so shy that to even get up onstage in a club, I'd need a few drinks," McGraw shares on the cover of the new issue of Men's Health. "I remember my mom tellin' me, 'Y'know, if you don't get up there a couple of times without doing that, it's gonna be a problem.'"
Things did become a problem for the singer, a fact that he's been pretty open about for years. "I drank too much," he recounts, noting his mother was his voice of reason. "I partied too much. And did other things too much. Chemically. No needles or that kind of stuff, but...use your imagination."
Within the issue (out on newsstands June 24), McGraw details exactly how he keeps fit and how he balances his career, family and having fun. On his exercise routine, he explains, "I'll be the first to admit I take it to extremes. I'm not one of those people who can sorta half-ass something."
And if you're itching for the full interview, Men's Health is now available for digital download, ahead of the street date.
This summer, McGraw continues on his Sundown Heaven Town Tour, as he prepares to drop his brand new album (Sundown Heaven Town), which is jump started with his current single "Meanwhile Back At Mama's" (featuring Faith Hill). The set is expected to hit retail Sept. 16 and will be his second project with Big Machine Label Group, following 2013's Two Lanes Of Freedom. More info here.