Former Inter Milan and Argentina captain Javier Zanetti has finally revealed what made him age like a fine wine. Uncovering his fitness secret, the former defender said that he used to leg press a mammoth 500kgs.
Joining the Italian club in 1995, the legendary defender went on to spend nearly 20 years with Inter, making 858 appearances before eventually calling it quit on his 41st birthday in 2014. Winning a total of 16 trophies during the course – including five Serie A titles and one UEFA Champions League, Zanetti was always known for his sheer athleticism and the 45-year-old has credited all this to his strength.
Zanetti, who is now the vice-president of the Nerazzurri, said that he initially focused his attention on strength and added that he used to leg press a whopping 500kg and 310kg with one leg alone.
“Strength has always been a fundamental aspect in my career,” he told Fox Sports Italia.
17 year-old Javier Zanetti. Look at the legs/thighs… pic.twitter.com/MqTamQGXqi
— FedeNerazzurra (@_FedeNerazzurra) March 1, 2013
“When I arrived in Italy in 1995, I started doing a lot of strength work, both with the team and on my own time. A player with strong muscles is more likely to prevent injuries and performs better.
“I always played twice a week, even from Sunday to Tuesday, but despite that would never miss my Monday strength training. Although usually after 48 hours you do feel tired, it made me feel better for the next game.
“I would bench press and had specific tests to work out which weight to lift during different periods of the season. I leg pressed 500kg and with one leg I managed to lift 310kg.”