The refrigerator behind Ike Taylor

Rich Schultz

Professional athletes require a ridiculous exercise and nutrition program, and for an 11 year veteran like Ike Taylor, sometimes you have to be smart about your body.

NFL players have their own sense of genius about them. While most aren't able to perform open heart surgery, but for the majority, the minute details that go into their training and nutritional strategies require an intelligence that the everyday America can't fathom.

There are the offensive and defensive linemen who focus on keeping their weight and strength up so they  can perform their jobs in the trenches to the best of their ability. Training with massive amount of weight and tracking a caloric diet that wouldn't be recommended for any normal human being is old hat for the beef in the middle.

For the skill position players, their diets have to be a bit more precise and calculated, but for some, like Pittsburgh Steelers' cornerback Ike Taylor, you just have to do what works for you to stay healthy and active in the NFL for 11 seasons.

Taylor recently allowed SI.com reporter Sarah Toland into his home to inspect his refrigerator and talk about his nutrition that has kept him in the NFL for so long. So, upon further review, what did she find in Ike "Swaggin's" fridge? A whole lot of nuthin'. Why is Taylor's fridge so bleak?

"I've been living the bachelor life for so long, all I have i my fridge is water and yogurt."

Although the bachelor life might have his ice box bare, doesn't mean Ike doesn't keep something in there that is physically impossible to store, but if you follow the Steelers you know Ike marches to the beat of his own drum. The most important thing in Taylor's diet can't be found in the fridge.

"Sleep," he said. "That's a heavy part of my diet, napping during the day. It rejuvenates your body. If you go to New York City, they have nap cocoons where people can go and nap for lunch. Some basketball teams are putting naps into their workouts. People  have started to realize that sleeping is an important part of your diet."

Taylor said he eats out a tremendous amount, but typically eats fish and always takes leftovers home for future meals. Along with eating out, staples of Taylor's diet are a vitamin concoction in the morning chased with greek yogurt, chilled red wine with dinner and plenty of water. Put all that together and you have yourself an Ike Taylor meal plan (actual meal plan not recommended for non NFL caliber cornerbacks).

Eating is just one part of his longevity. Intense training with speed and conditioning coach Tom Shaw in Florida is second to none in terms of season preparation. Taylor's conditioning is continually among the best on the team, and even in the league. At 34 years of age, Taylor's best playing days are behind him, but his nutrition and training have kept him relevant for 11 seasons.

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