Tony Talks: Infrared Saunas

I introduced you all to my friend and Fox Sports co-host, Tony Gonzalez, a few months ago, and I’ve asked him to share some of his health and wellness rituals and regimens with us. He’s all about finding ways to feel good and have a clear mind—and that’s something I think we can all benefit from, right?—M.S.

I played in the NFL for 17 years, and when I retired, I really had to adjust my lifestyle: everything from my workout to my diet to my motivation for staying fit. The one thing I did pretty quickly was I stopped hitting the weights (because I didn’t have to do that anymore). My routine now consists of cold showers every morning and, among many other things (which I’ll share in upcoming posts), infrared saunas.

To start, a sauna is any kind of room or machine that allows someone to experience dry or wet (steam) heat. And, you guessed it, an infrared sauna does the same thing but with an infrared light that I think heats up the body faster and better. Now, it might not be for everyone, but I love the whole process of heating up and sweating it out: the heat detoxifies, helps with some of my joint pain, and can actually mimic cardiovascular exercise to get your blood flowing. Now the benefits of infrared saunas are debated by some, but it’s been my experience that after an infrared sauna, I feel great: clear-headed, less stressed, and ready to jump into a cold shower and then jump into my day.

If you’re interested and in L.A., check out Sweatheory, in Hollywood, or HotBox Infrared Sauna Studio downtown. In N.Y.C., you can visit the urban sweat lodge, Shape House, in the Flatiron District, or Midtown’s ReCover. And like whenever you add something new to your health routine, check in with a doctor before setting up your first session. Have fun sweating it out!