This former NFL quarterback used running as part of his training regimen during his playing career. He still does.
During his 14-year NFL career playing for the Cincinnati Bengals, New York Jets and Arizona Cardinals, four-time Pro Bowl quarterback Boomer Esiason became known for his winning ways. Fitness is still a top priority for Esiason. But these days, when he’s not commentating on Monday Fight Football, the 53-year-old father of two puts his gridiron tenacity toward finding a cure for cystic fibrosis through the Boomer Esiason Foundation.
What part did running play in your football career?
Coaches used running as a motivator in the off-season. In high school, college and the pros, each of my teams required players to be able to run 1.5 miles in under 8:30. During the off-season you would spend six weeks alone trying to hit that. Getting in shape as a football player means getting your wind and developing your lungs. Running is good for that.
What was a typical running workout?
I would run 3 miles every few days. On the other days, I would do 400- or 200-meter sprints. On Monday, Wednesday and Friday, I went to the track. My warm-up was a quarter-mile jog, then I’d sprint a 400, then walk a 400, sprint a 400, walk a 400 and continue alternating like that until I got to 12. The day after a Sunday game, I would run 1 to 3 miles to work through any aches and pains from the previous day.
What does your fitness routine look like now?
I run 2 miles a couple of times a week, play ice hockey two or three times a week and ride my bike about 60 miles per week. I run in our annual Boomer’s Cystic Fibrosis Run to Breathe in July. It’s a 4-mile race through Central Park in Manhattan, and serves as the kickoff for all of our teams running the New York City Marathon.
Why is running a focus of the Boomer Esiason Foundation’s platform to fight cystic fibrosis?
It is so important for cystic fibrosis patients to be active. We discovered firsthand through our son Gunnar that cystic fibrosis is a lonely disease. Running, training and participating in events gives patients and their families a way to connect and be active.
More About Boomer
Running in Central Park is unbelievable because it feels so alive.
My New Balance 936 shoes are like a gift from God. When I retired from the NFL, I had double plantar fasciitis. It took me a long time to overcome it and those shoes helped.
Get up and Go
If I feel unmotivated, running someplace with good energy helps me get off my ass and get moving.
After a race, I love a cheeseburger and a nice, big Guinness.