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Tim McGraw talks about why he quit drinking: 'I knew I drank too much'

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    Singer Tim McGraw smiles as he performs on NBC's "Today" show in New York May 23 2014. REUTERS

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    Country singers Faith HIll and her husband Tim McGraw arrive at the 55th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, California February 10, 2013. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT) (GRAMMYS-ARRIVALS) - RTR3DM59Reuters

Tim McGraw has never hidden the fact that he quit drinking in 2008, when he realized it was becoming a problem he could no longer control. Now the singer has shared what it was that finally inspired him to give up alcohol for good.

“It got to the point where I knew I drank too much,” he shares on Oprah Winfrey’s 
Master Class" TV show. “I knew it was affecting my personal relationships. It was affecting my professional relationships. It was affecting my family. It was turning me into a person that I didn’t want to be. I knew I was at a point where I could lose everything in my life. First and foremost, my family.”

The Louisiana native traces his problems with alcohol back to his childhood, when he found out his father was professional baseball player Tug McGraw.

“Early on, my mom had told me, ‘You need to stop doing that, or it’s going to become an issue for you,’” he says. “You can come up with a million excuses why you drink too much. Lack of confidence. The success that came so quickly. And then, some of the things that you didn’t realize was trauma, I guess, back when you were 11 years old and you find that birth certificate.”

The husband of Faith Hill, and father of three girls, recalls the moment he decided to give up what he calls his “liquid courage.”

“I had a complete blow-out drinking one night, the night before the [Live Your Voice] tour started,” he recounts. “Flew to Florida that morning, from being wasted the night before, and started that tour, and haven’t drank since. That was the toughest tour I’ve ever done in my life, to get through that tour not drinking. I’d never done it before. I’d never done a show — I could probably count on one hand the times I’d stepped on stage if I didn’t have alcohol in me, or something. That was the toughest thing about quitting.”

Thankfully, McGraw has maintained a healthy lifestyle, including making exercise a part of his daily routine since he gave up alcohol.

“Working out is a great way to go out on stage,” he says. “When I hit the stage, my adrenaline is going and I’m ready.”

McGraw is currently crossing the country on his Sundown Heaven Town Tour, which heads to Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. this week. See a list of all of his upcoming shows here.

Next: The Top 10 Tim McGraw Songs

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