Rebecca Wilcox on turning 40

TV presenter and radio personality, Rebecca Wilcox is an inspirational and empowering role model. I wanted to find out how she was feeling and what expectations she has since turning 40 last year.

Rebecca Wilcox was a regular reporter on BBC1’s Watchdog and BBC Three’s Mischief series. As well as presenting, she’s been an undercover reporter and worked alongside Nicky Campbell on the prime time consumer series, Your Money Their Tricks.

Rebecca has hosted beauty segments on Channel 4‘s show How To Look Good Naked and was the consumer expert for ITV1’s This Morning. She got to drive a formula one racing car while presenting an one hour biography on F1 superstar Lewis Hamilton and after the experience she said, ‘I’m so tired and I’ve done nothing.’ Pretty much sums up how I feel these days!

Before becoming a presenter, Rebecca worked in television production on shows from Cops With Cameras to Hell’s Kitchen. In 2006 I had the absolute pleasure of working with her for 6 months on the Channel 5 series, Trust me I’m a Holiday Rep in Malia, Crete. The schedule was tough and intense but we made up for it with some very debauched nights out. I can specifically remember a rather raunchy dance off between Rebecca and I in a very empty, out of season, nightclub. I can’t tell you who won as I passed out drunk and pulled a muscle attempting to pole dance. Those are memories we both cherish forever although witnesses of that night can’t unsee what they saw. And we apologise for that.

‘It left me so starved I suffered blackouts.’

I imagine that with being in front of the camera comes a huge pressure to look your best at all times. After losing her father in 2000, Rebecca comfort ate her way through her grief and after going up a couple of dress sizes turned to the Tracy Anderson method which left her so hungry she suffered blackouts. Since then she attributes her health and happiness to a balanced diet and regular exercise.

‘The Queen of procrastination.’

Rebecca talked me through her typical day which includes a very early wake up call around 5.30am courtesy of her two lovely boys. After preparing breakfast for the family, she exercises and credits that for making her a nicer person. She spends an inordinate amount of time wiping kitchen surfaces having, like many of us, gotten obsessed with Mrs Hinch, even though she hates cleaning. Rebecca openly admits to being the Queen of procrastination. She writes and also preps her radio show but the fallout of lockdown made her realise how much she needs people and without them she’s anti productive. By 8pm, she’s in bed. 

I asked Rebecca what advice she’d give her 20 year old self. She would tell herself to stop giving a shit, eat the chocolate and take more naked pictures so we could look back and love ourselves more. Sweaty spanks were her wardrobe staple back then. These days, she doesn’t really care what she looks like as she’s more confident knowing she’s chosen to be there because she enjoys the work. She feels it freeing to say no to jobs. She says, ‘It’s got to be worth me not being with my kids.’

In her 40s she’s feeling fit, content and hopeful but anxious about what’s coming next. Likening it to being on a paddleboard, so easy to fall off but necessary just to maintain (a life) balance.  

Thoughts on self preservation

Rebecca’s top tips for self preservation are to get as much sleep as you can and to find clothes that fit you, not the fashion, buying fewer pieces that are better fits. 

We agree that finding clothes can be tricky as there just doesn’t seem to be consistent sizing across high street stores and you can often be left feeling really fat and bloated.

The most important belief Rebecca has is to ‘Be the person and the parent and the working Mum that you want to be and not letting other people’s opinions dictate anything you do.’ 

You can listen to Rebecca Wilcox and her Mum putting the world to rights on Sundays at 5pm on Boom radio.

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