Life doesn't get much better for New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. He's still competing at high-level despite being 'over the hill,' he's got enough Super Bowl rings to fill out one hand, and he's married to a beautiful Victoria Secret Model! How does he do it? Well, we aren't sure how he landed Gisele, but for his on-field success, Brady credits his TB12 method.
Developed with his long-time friend, trainer, and accused scam artist, Alex Guerrero, Brady launched a book and website that provides laypeople with the training methods of their favorite NFL QB. On top of that, he's teamed up with companies to provide a wide range of fitness and nutrition products that will most likely sit in your closet and collect dust.
Although some aspects of the TB12 method seem sound, others appear to be crafted solely in pseudoscience. Even ESPN radio host, Bomani Jones, called the method a "multi-level marketing scheme, without the multi-levels,” adding that the "whole d*** thing feels like a con.”
We'll let you be the judge about the validity of the NFL G.O.A.T's claims as we dive into 15 absurd things Tom Brady does to stay healthy.
15 His Daily Schedule Is Planned Year's In Advance
Some may credit Brady's longevity in the NFL to his last-second game-time decisions, but when it comes to his daily life, Tom has every second of his day mapped out for years in advanced. Everything is meticulously planned out, from waking up in the morning to going to sleep at night, leaving little room to lounge around.
According to Sports Illustrated, Brady's detailed schedule is set for three-years in the future, which is why he predicts to play in the NFL until his mid-40s.
His friend and trainer, Alex Guerrero says that this detailed regimen helps to allow the body to do what it wants, even stating, "We don't let the body dictate to us. We dictate."
Using Tom's daily, monthly, and yearly goals, Guerrero is able to pinpoint workouts and problem areas before they become a concern.
14 Bedtime is 8:30 P.M. Sharp
Most of us are still up and moving at 8:30 PM, but not the five-time Super Bowl winning quarterback. While you're just beginning to binge a few episodes on Netflix, Brady is counting sheep, resting his aging body to fight another day. Per an interview with ABC News, the New England quarterback views ample sleep as a sacrifice, and a necessity, to achieve success. He stated that he needs the excessive shuteye because "I love what I do and I want to do it for a long time."
Even in the offseason, Tom tries to be asleep before 9:00 PM, as he wakes up before the sun every morning. During a sit-down with Parade, he also dished about his bedroom conditions: "I like it cold and dark like a bear. My wife likes it warm. We’re always trying to find a happy medium."
13 And He Wears Bioceramic-Infused Pajamas
Gisele must love it when Tom hops into bed with his nifty recovery PJs. Athletic apparel company, Under Armour, has teamed up with the Patriots savior to create a line of bioceramic infused pyjamas.
This “athlete recovery sleepwear” is supposed to help promote a better night's sleep by combining ergonomics with science.
But, is it worth spending nearly $100 for a pair of pants that you are only going to wear to bed?
Well, the bioceramic particles apparently absorb infrared waves emitted from the body, and reflect them back as "far infrared" waves. While that sounds like blatant pseudoscience, there is some actual evidence to back it up. According to The Guardian, sleep experts believe that bioceramics may improve blood circulation, but the evidence is still inconclusive. It seems like Brady's on to something here, but you may want to save your money until the science fully verifies his claims.
12 Drinks Lots of Water... And We Mean Lots
Health organizations have all agreed on daily water intake guidelines, dubbed the '8x8' rule. They suggest that you drink 8, 8 fl. oz. glasses per day, or roughly two liters of water. While this recommendation fluctuates based on size and physical activity, Tom Brady takes his fluid intake to whole other level. The man downs 37 glasses of purified water a day during the season!
According to his TB12 Method, you are supposed to "drink at least one-half of your body weight in ounces of water every day." While a copious amount of water may seem like the healthy option, if you drink like Brady, there is a risk of developing a disease called hyponatremia. In essence, your kidneys can't keep up with the liquid you ingest, causing less sodium in the body, potentially leading to renal failure. So how come Tom is not suffering?
11 With Lots of TB12 Electrolytes
The three-time NFL MVP avoids drowning out the good salts in his body by supplementing his ample water intake with his own TB12 electrolytes. He even opts out of the typical sports drinks on NFL sidelines in favor of his super potion. For a cool $15 a bottle, you too can ingest the "all natural," "pH balancing," "ionic trace minerals." So in other words, Gatorade?
According to an interview with ESPN, Brady's secret stuff contains "72 trace minerals" that are excreted from the body during perspiration.
The electrolytes are supposedly extracted from sea water and "contain no added preservatives, flavors, or sweeteners." While there is no doubt that electrolytes are vital for proper muscle function, there is something a little fishy about Brady's mineral product. Maybe it's just the sea water!
10 Sunburn Theory
Although the New England quarterback's methods may seem somewhat sensible up until this point, his crazy sunburn theory is just that: a crazy theory. With all the water and electrolytes that he ingests, he claims that he cannot get burned by the sun. In his TB12 book, he writes...
"These days, even if I get an adequate amount of sun, I won’t get a sunburn, which I credit to the amount of water I drink. I always hydrate afterward, too, to keep my skin from peeling."
According to NBC News, Tom is drowning in his own pseudoscience with this one. The scientific explanation to Brady's claims is that melanin, the protein that protects the body from UV damage, builds in the body over time with exposure to sun. With Brady playing the outdoor sport of football all his life, his levels of melanin are especially high compared to the normal population. Still, melanin does not protect you from skin cancer, even if you don't burn. Therefore, don't try and be like Brady with this method; stick to using sunscreen instead!
9 Has An Extremely Strict Diet
There is no doubt that having a proper diet has been one of the foundations to Tom's success, but he seems to take it to a point of absurdity! According to Boston.com interview with Brady and Bundchen's personal chef, Allen Campell, 80% of their meals are made up of fresh, organic vegetables and whole grains, including"brown rice, quinoa, millet, [and] bean." The other 20% consists of lean, grass-fed meats like beef, chicken, wild salmon, and "duck every now and then."
That sounds like a whole lot of work for a normal person to prepare, so Brady has made it easy for regular folks, and teamed up with the vegan meal-planning service, Purple Carrot, delivering ready-made food right to your door. For a whopping $78/week, you can get just three meals that are reportedly "gluten-free" and "100% plant-based." Seems like a little bit of a financial hassle for a product that will most likely leave you hungry.
8 ...Which Prohibits Many Common Foods
As you would expect, there are some foods that the 40-year-old doesn't allow himself to eat, but some of his omissions are just bizarre. As with many typical healthy diets, Brady omits white sugar, white flour, MSG, dairy, and any processed oils. On top of that, he opts out caffeinated drinks, such as coffee and soda, and doesn't drink alcohol.
There are still some even odder items on Tom's restricted food list.
Again, according to his personal chef Alan Campbell, Brady refuses to eat nightshades "because they’re not anti-inflammatory." That includes mushrooms, tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers. Now that seems a little excessive.
But, the craziest thing that Brady doesn't eat: fruit! While he may have the occasional banana in his smoothie, in an interview with The Cut, he admitted “I’ve never eaten a strawberry in my life. I have no desire to do that.”
7 Ingests Alkaline Ash
In addition to Brady's other crazy diet elements, he supplements his food with an "alkaline or neutral ash," allowing the body to "thrive." The idea behind his theory is that most foods are acidic, and changing the pH of your diet reaps anti-inflammatory benefits. According to Brady's TB12 Method, ingesting too many acidic foods can leave the body prone to joint pain, muscle aches, and infections, among several other causes, and possibly lead to a condition known as acidosis.
But, in The Guardian's investigation into Brady's health claims, exercise physiologist and nutrition scientist, Stacy Sims, states that "what you eat doesn’t affect blood pH." Although the quarterback's diet indeed encourages a more alkaline diet which promotes a healthier body, his claims of believing into acidosis are utterly false. In fact, the condition of acidosis "can’t be corrected by nutrition."
6 Ridiculous Workouts
While most NFL players are power cleaning multiple plates in the weight room, Brady takes a lighter approach to his fitness. He focuses more on pliability (which we will get to later), making his muscles more flexible.
Instead of powering out hammer curls in front of the mirror, Brady utilizes loop resistant bands to achieve his goal.
These giant rubber bands allow of constant tensions on the muscles and are a form of a "prehab," so that Brady doesn't get hurt on the field. According to a Boston.com overview, sports medicine specialist, Dr. Jessica Flynn, believes the TB12 resistance band method is useful and that Tom provides a "great manual" of workouts. Still, she says that people have to "work into them slowly" to avoid injury.
5 Uses A Vibrating Foam Roller
In today's fitness world, foam rollers are all the rage in recovery. By rubbing your muscles in the right direction, fibers can be be elongated and readjusted to lie on the same plain, reducing knots and tension. But, 'Tom Terrific' takes the method a lot further by offering his own vibrating foam roller, and vibrating sphere!
According to the TB12 website, the foam roller comes with three different vibration levels which are meant to "lengthen and soften your muscles to improve durable and functional strength." The vibrating sphere is meant as a more targeted, personal version of the foam roller, "focusing on key areas like your back and shoulders."
Although it sounds like a great idea, a muscle physiology expert interviewed by the New York Times called the recovery method "balderash."
4 Focuses On Muscle Pliability
We get to the core of the TB12 muscular ideology with pliability. Brady believes that dense muscles can actually be detrimental to his game. His focus is on obtaining long, soft muscles that allow him to prevent injuries and takes hit better. In an interview on CBS This Morning, Brady said...
"If I can keep my muscles pliable, I can hopefully, you know, limit the intensity or limit the injury altogether, if I do absorb some of these forces."
Although Brady thinks that pliability will "reeducate your brain-body connection," the science has yet to be proven.
According to fivethirtyeight.com, most muscle experts hadn't even heard the term "pliability" before Brady published it in his book. Both Tom Brady, and his trainer Alex Guerrero, have not gone through any clinical trials looking into muscle pliability, and it's simply just a claim. Still, it seems to have worked for the Patriots leader as he's one of the best quarterbacks to ever get behind center!
3 Mental Training Phase One: Neural Priming
Instead of just training his body to succeed, Brady also preps his mind. He has three step process to mental preparation, with the first step being 'Neural Priming.' Guerrero massages Brady as he relaxes and contracts his muscles as part of their pliability regimen. Under the stress of the massage, Brady trains his mind to relax, instead of tense up. His ultimate belief is that when he gets hit in the pocket, he doesn't want his muscles to seize. Then, by training his brain to get used to the pain, his body will stay relaxed and prevent further injuries.
Experts believe that Brady is actually benefiting from this technique, as he trains his mind to be comfortable with the uncomfortable. They also concluded that this method works for Brady as he is in tune with his body, yet may not succeed with anyone else.
2 Mental Training Phase Two: Mindset/Attitude
The second step in the TB12 mental training regimen is simple: have an optimistic attitude. That may not seem like a huge shocker, but Brady is serious about his realistic mindset. In his book, he writes...
“Remembering to maintain the right mental toughness, and also that it’s a choice we make every day to be and stay positive."
The quarterback takes his mindset to the next level, reportedly treating every single practice like a game.
That way, he is always mentally prepared, and getting the best reps with the first-team offense.
Scientifically, it's hard to verify the validity of Brady's mental toughness claims, and it can be compared to studying about love. The intangible force feels different for everyone, and cannot be strictly quantified. Still, you can't knock the guy for keeping a positive attitude; how do you think the Patriots came back from down t 28-3 against ATL in the Super Bowl?
1 Mental Training Phase Three: Brain Games
The final step in Brady's mental training? Brain games. No, we aren't talking about mind games, the QB actually teamed up with the company Brain HQ to create a series of mental tasks and games that you can purchase in the app store for just under $100 per year. Again, from the TB12 book:
"The exercises increase the speed and accuracy with which I take in sensory information and improve my ability to process, store, and retrieve information."
While it seems like building up a mental sweat may help you in the real world, there are no conclusive long-term studies that prove Brady's point.
Yet, many neuroscientists believe that brain games are "placebos to get you to believe in yourself," giving you a little extra edge. For Brady, that boost in confidence has allowed him to go down as the NFL's G.O.A.T.
So, take all of Brady's ideas with a grain of salt, and perhaps try some for yourself. While you're waiting for the package to come in the mail, follow us on Facebook at TheSportster for all your sports entertainment needs.