Boxing legend Oscar De La Hoya recently gave glimpses into his diet and training routine. In an interview with Men’s Health, ‘Golden Boy’ explained how his diet and training routine has changed after retiring from the sport.
Oscar De La Hoya is one of the most prominent icons in the boxing world. During the professional career that spanned from 1992 to 2008, The California native won 11 boxing titles in six different weight classes. He is credited for making boxing a commercial success in the 1990s and early 2000s by generating nearly $700 million in pay-per-view buys.
Starting from 1994 till losing to Felix Trinidad in 1999, De La Hoya went 19-0 in title fights, winning and defending the WBO junior lightweight, WBO and IBF lightweight, WBC super lightweight, and welterweight titles.
He continued to win titles following the Trinidad loss and won the vacant IBA welterweight, WBC, WBA, and The Ring light middleweight titles by defeating respectable opponents like Javier Castillejo, Fernando Vargas, and Felix Strum.
However, losses to Bernard Hopkins and Floyd Mayweather Jr. marked the change of guard in the lower weight classes. De La Hoya retired from competing following a loss to Manny Pacquiao in December 2008.
In 2002, De La Hoya founded Golden Boy Promotions and became one of the earliest fighters to do so while being an active competitor. It has grown to be one of the foremost boxing promotions and has several high-profile boxers under its banner. The 50-year-old also tried his hand at MMA promotion and was credited for making the trilogy fight between MMA legends Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz in 2018.
Recently, the legendary boxer came to the forefront of sports media following the release of the two-part documentary series ‘The Golden Boy’. It delves into the darker side of De La Hoya’s personal life.
Oscar De La Hoya shares his diet and workout routine
Oscar De La Hoya’s diet
De La Hoya started the interview by showing what rests inside his fridge and shared glimpses of his current and past diet. De La Hoya admits that it was easier to maintain a healthy diet when he was actively competing as a boxer. After all, it was a part of his job and there was no way around it for a multi-division champion like ‘Golden Boy’. At 50, he likes to stay in shape and look good. Therefore he focuses on eating healthy and balanced meals.
“Even if I do cheat – have a donut or something – it’s like, ‘Okay, I have to work extra hard the next day’,” Oscar De La Hoya said.
The staple foods in Oscar De La Hoya’s fridge include high protein foods such as yogurts and eggs along with drinks like ginger ale. But the most important component is plain and pure water, a lot of it.
The retired boxer relies heavily on healthy fat sources like almond butter, and peanut butter to go with his food. He also loves using Tajin for seasoning, which combines chilies’ spice and citrus flavor – two of the signature flavorings in Mexican cuisine.
Oscar De La Hoya’s go-to meals
For the major meals of the day, Oscar De La Hoya uses meal prep service. These meals typically consist of balanced portions of chicken, sweet potato wedges and broccoli etc. However, steak is the boxing legend’s favorite protein and a juicy chunk of steak always sits in the fridge, waiting to be cooked. Interestingly, steak was also a part of De La Hoya’s pre-match meals:
“My pre-match meal, I would have a little tiny piece of steak, just a tiny one, chicken and a lot of vegetables and like I said, a lot of water, tons and tons. The more water I can drink, the better… Make sure that I’m light and lean. I don’t want to feel sluggish. When you’re up in the ring, you wanna feel very elusive and fast.”
He enlists fried liver with onions as a go-to comfort food and also likes to cook himself every now and then. But ‘Golden Boy’ prefers cooking in his air fryer and preparing quick meals. There is one protein that the 50-year-old never eats. And that is:
“They would make me eat venison every single day (during boxing fight camps). So you’ll never ever see it in my fridge. I’m just sick of it,” De La Hoya stated.
De La Hoya starts the day with a wholesome breakfast that helps him sustain for a long time. It is prepared by his girlfriend and includes:
- Egg Whites
- Tomato Slices
- Soyrizo (Vegan Soy Chorizo)
- Corn Tortillas
- Toast with Almond Butter
Following a stringent and healthy diet is good for health. But indulging in your favorite meals occasionally is also necessary to add some fun to life. Oscar De La Hoya is not an exception to this. Occasionally, he goes all out on a cheat day and does not conform to a single cheat meal or a favorite dish. He explained:
“A chicharron, tacos, you know. Then at night, we’ll go eat some sushi, have some salmon, and a little wine. I have my Silver Oaks here which I really, really love. My cheat day is not really too bad, but as long as I control the portions!”
The ‘Golden Boy’ fitness routine
At the peak of his boxing career, Oscar De La Hoya trained at nearly 10,000-ft elevation and followed a pretty intense training routine. The boxing legend would wake up at 4:30 AM and go for a six to seven miles run before heading over for boxing training in the gym. He followed it up with stretching, weight training and other forms of training essential for a fighter. He followed this routine for years. In his books, this is what an intense training routine looks like. However, things have changed with time and of course, growing age.
Oscar De La Hoya now trains at the City of Angels Boxing gym in downtown Los Angeles. His workouts have changed in terms of frequency and intensity. But he still aims to train three times a week and usually spends about an hour in the gym for each workout.
“I compact everything with jumping rope, hitting the speed bag, maybe running or cycling,” De La Hoya said.
But when it comes to naming a favorite exercise, running comes to Oscar De La Hoya’s mind. He obviously doesn’t run as much as he used to. However, it is still an essential aspect of his training routine.
A morning person by nature, De La Hoya likes to get a good workout in the mornings so he can have full energy for the rest of the day. One thing that has not changed is that the 50-year-old does not like to train alone and prefers to be with training partners in the gym.
“One thing about me is that I have to workout with somebody else. I sometimes need that motivation and I need that push. When I see somebody working harder than me then I can step it up, the adrenaline kicks in. And it’s fun working out with people, with friends, with family,” Oscar De La Hoya stated.
If he could choose to train with one person, dead or alive, Oscar De La Hoya said he would choose Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson for sure.
“Just to keep feeling young” – Oscar De La Hoya on his fitness goals
Fitness goals can vary greatly depending upon your age and daily routine. Oscar De La Hoya’s fitness goals have changed since retiring from boxing. However, maintaining discipline and youth are the main goals.
“Just to keep feeling young. As much as I work out, whether it’s five minutes or an hour a day, for me, it’s all about maintaining that discipline and just feeling young.”
Oscar De La Hoya is one person that can’t sit idle. He has to keep himself busy with different projects to stay motivated. In his own words:
“I keep my mind fit by working.”
Oscar De La Hoya has shown the heart of a fighter by revealing his personal demons in a recent documentary. It shows that even if he has retired from competing, fighting has never left him.
You can watch the full video here, courtesy of Men’s Health magazine’s YouTube channel: