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Written by Eric Velazquez | Photos by Michael Zagaris
NFL icon Jerry Rice may be the busiest retired guy we know, but he still fancies a good tussle with the weights
Twenty seasons in the NFL, 13 Pro Bowl selections. three Super Bowl rings and Jerry Rice still can't manage to change gears. Now 45, the future Hall of Famer still has a passion for fitness and football and is just as busy as ever. Still a regular face in the weight room and local track, Rice claims to be in the best shape of his life. He even showed his knack for the quick step on Season 2 of Dancing with the Stars, making it to the final two before making his exit there. With the Super Bowl only days away, we caught up with this gridiron legend to get his take on the Pats, the gym and his short game.
M&F: Jerry, thanks for taking the time to chat with us. Can you tell us what you've been up to career-wise since we last saw you on Dancing with the Stars?¹
JR: I am a spokesperson for Elations (www.elations.com), a blend of chondrotin, glucosamine, calcium and vitamin C that supports joint health. I've also been mentoring NFL recruits—particularly wide receivers—along with Roger Craig, Joe Montana and Randy Cross under the DeBartolo Sports & Entertainment umbrella. I also co-host a radio show on SIRIUS Wednesday nights at 5:00 pm PST. I am a regular co-host on Sports Sundays with Raj Mathai on the local NBC affiliate in the Bay Area. I spend whatever free time I have on the golf course and attending my children's sporting events and school functions. Working out, however, continues to be a daily priority and I love it.
M&F: What do you think about how this NFL season has gone? Do you think the Patriots can make history on February 3?
JR: This season has been unbelievable and unpredictable. I do think the Patriots have a chance to make history but I also think the Giants have the potential to upset that with another big game.
M&F: So be honest—how much do you miss the game?
JR: I definitely miss the game. I am a competitor and I will always have a love of the game.
M&F: How much did fitness and training change from the time you entered the league to the time you left? How important did weight training become?
JR: I have always been committed and my work ethic and training have been a constant, so for me, there wasn't much of a change at all. Work hard and get results, period. Since I retired, I've stayed committed to working out. In fact, I'd say I'm in the best shape of my life right now.
M&F: What are you doing these days, specifically, as far as working out? Anything competitive?
JR: I run on the track, lift weights and play golf. I'm pretty competitive with myself.
M&F: What about nutrition? Has that changed at all for you since leaving the league?
JR: Aside from adding Elations to my daily routine, nothing else has really changed. I continue to eat well and have a lot of the same eating habits. Adding Elations has allowed me to take my body back to where it was, so I can train just as hard as ever.
M&F: The NFL website lists you at 6-2, 200 lbs. I'm assuming that's from your last season in the league. What are you weighing now? Have an idea of what your bodyfat is?
JR: I weigh 205 pounds and my bodyfat is around 7-8 percent.
M&F: Since you're still so active, do you take any supplements to fuel your training like creatine, protein or caffeine?
JR: I use Elations for joint health. For caffeine, I do like soy chai tea lattes.
M&F: What's a normal workout week like for Jerry Rice these days?
JR: Right now, I'm in the gym around five days a week. I do the VersaClimber and cycle for an hour each three times per week. I lift for my upper body three times a week and my lower body twice per week.
M&F: Wikipedia says you ran what was "considered a mediocre 40" with a time of 4.7. Ronnie Lott says you ran 4.2 on Sundays. What do you think about that criticism and do you think that 4.7 mark was accurate? Does that time really matter?
JR: I was fast enough when a defender was chasing me!
–Interview by Eric Velazquez