Tom Brady & Alex Guerrero Share 12 Health Tips & a Strength Workout
Now is the perfect time to do some spring cleaning when it comes to your daily routine and health habits, and Tom Brady, his body coach Alex Guerrero, and the team at TB12 – the health and wellness company co-founded by the famous QB – are sharing their tips on how to get in shape and set a healthy routine for this season and for years to come.
The way to achieve your optimal well-being and performance goals is by focusing on nutrition, hydration, and mental and physical wellness, as modeled by the superstar NFL QB who is about to begin his 23rd season in the NFL at the age of 45 (which he turns in August).
Though Brady already has a seat waiting for him at the Fox Sports Desk (where a lucrative commentating contract starts whenever he puts down the ball for the last time), Tom is still at it, playing as the oldest QB in the league, in an effort to show age is but a number, as he attempts to lead the Tampa Bay Bucs back to the Superbowl.
Brady and Guerrero share their go-to simple healthy habit and specific lifestyle changes to help you move better and recover faster, as well as their best advice on how to stay in the game and do what you love for longer.
Get inspired by these 12 health tips that Tom Brady follows, then check out the latest full-body functional strength and conditioning workout video inspired by Brady's conditioning moves from Tampa-based TB12 Head Body Coach Bryan Hart, streamed and ready for you to try anytime, for free, for effective do-at-home moves that require zero equipment.
Here are Tom Brady and body coach Alex Guerrero's top tips for being healthy, staying active at any age, and getting fitter, starting with your outlook.
Tom Brady's 12 Tips for a Healthier Life
1. Adopt a positive TB12 mindset
According to a post on the TB12 blog, the TB12 mindset is "a set of principles that guide us in our approach to the challenges life throws at us every day – inspired by the mindset that Tom has honed and refined over the last 20-plus years." To elaborate:
“The right mindset and attitude give us opportunities to do the best we can and to realize the potential that’s in every one of us." – Tom Brady.
Though we can’t all be NFL greats, there’s so much we can learn from the mindset that helped Tom get to where he is. To quote from that mindset:
"How do you build this principle into your own life? By taking action at the beginning of your day. When you wake up, consciously choose a positive outlook for the day ahead." He adds: "If you don't believe in yourself, why is anyone else going to believe in you?"
Here are Tom Brady and Alex Guerrero's other tips for reaching your personal health, fitness, and wellbeing goals:
2. Drink half your weight in fluid ounces of water
You need more water than you think. The amount may astound you. On the blog, Tom Brady shares what he drinks in a typical day:
- First thing in the morning, drink 20 ounces of water with TB12 Electrolytes.
- Hydrate and replenish electrolytes frequently while you work out to replenish fluid lost during exercise.
- Drink at least one-half of your body weight in ounces of water daily.
How much water should you drink? Registered Dietician, Nicole Osinga who created The Beet's VegStart Diet recommends using this simple formula: Multiply your weight in pounds by two-thirds (or .67) and the number you get is the number of ounces of water to drink in a day. Meaning that if you weigh 140 pounds, you should drink 120 ounces of water every day, or about 12 to 15 glasses of water per day.
3. Make 80 percent of your diet vegetables
“When people ask if I’m a vegan or a vegetarian,” Tom Brady says, “I tell them no, decidedly not.” But neither does he anything and everything. He eats mostly plant-based foods.
According to the TB12 blog, "Tom’s meals consist of roughly 80 percent plant-based foods and 20 percent animal-based foods. In months outside of the cold New England winter, that 80 percent might stretch up to 90 or 95 percent."
The TB12 blog explains that the best approach to eating is to never get overly full: "Be mentally prepared to leave the table feeling 75 percent full, and then stop eating when you reach this point. This enables your body to absorb and digest your food more easily.
- At lunch and dinner, follow the 80/20 rule: fill up 80 percent of your plate with vegetables and greens, and the remaining 20 percent with a lean protein
- Try to eat only real, whole foods: These are foods that were grown, not manufactured. Rule of thumb: if it’s in a box or a bag, it belongs there — don’t take it out.
- Take a multivitamin: Nobody’s perfect, and you never know what you may have missed.
4. Consume your Vitamin D
Most Americans are deficient in Vitamin D, which is important for immune health and overall wellbeing. In extreme cases, like the current COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak, the Centers for Disease Control recommends having a supply of electrolytes and vitamins on hand as a precautionary measure," according to the TB12 blog.
The average adult should be getting 600 IU or 15 mcg/day according to the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA), and while it's possible to get some vitamin D from being outside in the sunshine as the sun's UV rays help convert vitamin D to its active form in the body, it's difficult to achieve the required levels for most people who work inside.
Instead, Brady and the team recommend an electrolyte solution that is free of sugar and harmful additives, like the TB12 Electrolyte blend, as a way to replenish minerals you may lose during a workout, or if you think your diet may be lacking. They recommend supplementing with Vitamin D, a Multivitamin, or a Probiotic to help support a healthy immune system.
5. Consume essential fatty acids (from nuts and seeds)
One thing people often overlook in their health journey is the importance of Omega-3 fatty acids, the so-called heart-healthy oils that are in nuts, seeds, fish, and beans, among other healthy foods. Omega-3s are part of an anti-inflammation diet and help promote longevity.
"Omega-3s help shield against chronic inflammation and are incorporated into cell membranes throughout the body, aiding cellular stability," the TB12 blog explains. Studies have linked higher blood levels of omega-3s with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. To get more omega-3s, make a point of consuming nuts, seeds, flaxseed, and chia seeds. Check out this list of 7 plant-based foods with the most omega-3 fatty acids.
6. Skip added sugar, refined carbs, and other process snacks
When most people think of added sugar, they immediately think of weight gain. But excessive amounts of sugar can do even more harm, the TB12 team wants you to know. "The average American consumes about ½ a cup of added sugar per day and over time this adds up and causes excess inflammation in your body.
"In addition to making you feel sluggish and achy, chronic inflammation heightens your susceptibility to health conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and clogged arteries. If you want to perform your best and increase your longevity, minimizing chronic inflammation in your body is key.
Make like Tom and skip the sugary drinks, cut down on the amount you add to your coffee or tea, and check food labels since you'd be surprised at how many seemingly unsweet foods (like tomato sauce) include cane sugar on the label. Have a craving? Reach for a piece of whole fruit instead.
7. Move for 30 to 60 minutes each day
This is obvious, coming from the source. The TB12 team is bullish on working out hard, having fun, and taking time to recover, including making time for recovery and relaxation. But even going on vacation doesn't mean leaving your routine behind, they write.
Rest and recovery are critical to your training at all times of the year. Even if you don't have a full hour to get to the gym, make a point to move every day, and try to work "pliability" into your day whenever possible, which means using your body weight to build strength and train for functional fitness. If sore muscles have you sidelined, the TB12 Vibrating Pliability Mini Sphere can help for rolling out tight spots. And try the easy at-home pliability workout below.
8. Get extra Vitamin C by adding more citrus fruit to your diet
For better immunity, energy, and cell function, get vitamin C daily. Women need 75 milligrams a day and men should aim for 90. If you want to mix it up from the usual orange slices, here is a favorite smoothie to get a heaping dose of C into your routine:
Dairy-Free Orange Creamsicle Smoothie
- 1 cup frozen banana slices
- 1 cup dairy-free milk (almond, oat, coconut, etc.)
- 1 cup 100% orange juice
- 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup ice
- 1 scoop TB12 Vanilla Plant-Based Protein
- Optional: Add 1/4 avocado for extra creaminess
1. Combine all ingredients in a blender until smooth, and serve.
9. Add zinc to your diet
Your body needs both vitamins and minerals to function at its best – including electrolytes lost during sweat sessions like sodium, potassium, magnesium, and zinc. Zinc plays a role in supporting your overall health, and especially your immune system, studies have shown.
Zinc is a nutrient that people need to stay healthy, according to the National Institutes of Health. Zinc is found in cells throughout the body. It helps the immune system fight off invading bacteria and viruses.
The body also needs zinc to make proteins and DNA, the genetic material in all cells. During pregnancy, infancy, and childhood, the body needs zinc to grow and develop properly.
10. Consume protein every 4-6 hours throughout the day
Athlete or not, we all need protein in our diet, the TB12 team reminds us. "Primarily, it is required for the growth, maintenance, and recovery of muscle tissues," they write. "Though we often just associate protein with muscle, proteins are also needed to make blood, hair, enzymes, antibodies, and connective tissue – to name just a few."
But protein doesn't have to come from animal sources. "Whole grains, legumes, vegetables, seeds, and nuts are great sources of plant-based protein to incorporate into your diet." Other good sources of protein include peas, as well as "beans, and seeds (hemp, chia, flax), tree nuts, quinoa, avocado, and raw, leafy greens." For the top 20 vegetables with the most protein per serving check out this list.
Supplements with plant-based protein such as pea protein, have been found to be as effective as animal protein in building muscle, and contain complete amino acids, but are easier on digestion for some people.
11. Sleep at least 8 hours per night
Sleep is vital to every part of your health equation: working out, focusing, recovering from tough training sessions. Shoot for eight hours of sleep every night.
How to start? Skip the pre-bedtime snack, keep your room cool, and if you have to exercise at night, try to do it earlier to allow your body to fully calm down and relax before bed.
Put the phone down at least 30 minutes before bed, and turn off the television and other screens, since studies show that blue light from these devices suppresses melatonin, making it harder to get restful sleep or feel refreshed the next day. Blue light studies have linked it to a number of adverse health effects, including headaches.
Try powering down all of your electronics and screens at least a half-hour before going to sleep and if you need some relaxation, read a book instead.
12. Get probiotics into your diet
Probiotics are healthy bacteria that support the growth of so-called "good bacteria" in your gut that help your body conduct healthy digestion, boost your immune system, promote heart health, and even regulate your mood. The entirety of this microbial population makes up what's called our gut microbiome,
Probiotics, whether they come from food sources like fruits and vegetables, or supplements, contain many of the good live bacteria that live in our body and can have a profound effect on whole-body health. Consuming them can prevent a buildup of “bad” bacteria (that multiplies when we eat unhealthy food (such as added sugars, high-fat dairy, and fried foods) and maintain the nutrient balance we need to stay healthy.
Try This Functional Strength & Conditioning Routine from TB12
For TB12's head body coach virtual workout from Tampa, for do-anywhere strengthening moves, you can follow along here. All you need is your body weight, which for some people is more than others. Here is Bryan Hart's video workout, introducing the concept of "self-pliability," guiding you through a 30-minute workout class inspired by Tom Brady’s functional strength & conditioning routine.
Bottom Line: To be Healthier, Just Follow These 12 Tips from Tom Brady's TB12
Tom Brady credits his positive attitude, plant-based nutrition, and functional strength training for his longevity as a star NFL QB and optimal health in general. He and his longtime body coach and friend Alex Guerrero founded TB12 to help others share the secrets to success.
For more great content like this, check out The Beet's coverage of plant-based athletes who ditched meat and dairy for the sake of optimal performance and quicker recovery times.
20 Athletes Who Went Vegan to Get Stronger