Russell Wilson plans on competing in the NFL for a long time. The best place to prove the 32-year-old’s worth is on the field, of course. But, as elite athletes know, some of the toughest work takes place in the kitchen and at the gym. Playing through one’s 40s as a quarterback is not impossible but it is rare.
Tom Brady, 43, is showing no signs of retiring soon. His success is a model for his younger peers, like Wilson. And it’s not anywhere close to an easy plan to follow, even during the offseason.
Russell Wilson rarely misses a game
Wilson is the most crucial piece of the current Seahawks franchise. Despite mounting frustrations as his obvious individual talent fails to translate to as much playoff success as expected, it looks like he’ll be in Seattle for the foreseeable future. If they intend to get back to the big game, they’ll need him.
He pushed his team towards a historic crushing of the Denver Broncos to win Super Bowl XLVII back in 2014. Since, he continues to rack up Pro Bowl appearances and is widely regarded as one of the best quarterbacks in the league. Even with a strong run of young QBs like Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson in recent years, Wilson is still a force in the NFL.
So how does Seattle’s QB1 keep up with this younger crop of players? In large part, it’s what he does off the field, rather than on it. Even now, during a long break from the game, every single day is carefully crafted to position his body and mind for success on the field.
How Wilson’s recovery routine and diet keep him healthy
Wilson’s health is paramount for him, in a way even other great athletes don’t quite match. TMZ Sports reports that he shares a full-time trainer with his wife, pop star Ciara. Wilson has a full time physical therapist, too, leveraging the latest science through ever-evolving stretches and exercises to keep Wilson’s ligaments and tissues healthy. The QB has an exclusive masseuse.
For healthy meals, Wilson employs two chefs who share the duties of developing and cooking his meals. On the field, it’s common to hear fans call for the team to “Let Russ cook!”
At home, his diet is too complex to handle those duties himself. Russell Wilson consumes large amounts of vegetables, starting with superfood smoothies every morning. He makes the food sound delicious in his GQ interview, but he avoids sugar entirely.
Russell Wilson has two $200,000 hyperbaric chambers
According to NBC Sports, this complex wellness plan runs Wilson and Ciara upwards of $1 million per year. This includes a curious aspect of Wilson’s post-exercise and game-day recovery routine.
His secret is one many elite athletes have discovered in recent years: hyperbaric chamber therapy. According to the Mayo Clinic, hyperbaric oxygen therapy helps increase oxygen levels in the blood and reduces bacteria throughout the body.
For Russell Wilson, this helps reduce inflammation faster than the body does on its own. That’s crucial for an athlete who must return to practice and games fully recovered and ready to play. Wilson has two personal hyperbaric chambers, which cost around $125,000 each. One is in his own gym, while the other is in Ciara’s office, as they explained to GQ.
Although spending over $200,000 on hyperbaric chambers seems a little over-the-top, it may save an elite athlete money in the long run. For conditions not covered by insurance, the cost per treatment “generally ranges between $250-$450 per treatment,” according to Hyperbaric Medical Solutions.
Considering how often Wilson uses his hyperbaric chambers, he likely benefits from having personal chambers and paying the cost upfront.