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James Harrison: 'Body work' costs up to $600K a year

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James Harrison says this is the best he's felt physically since 2008, the year he won NFL Defensive Player of the Year honors.

After 10 grinding seasons as a star linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers, that's an impressive claim. Harrison's ability to land a multiyear deal from the Cincinnati Bengals speaks to his success in maintaining his physical condition.

So how has Harrison -- now 35 -- held off Father Time? Dedication is a huge part of it. Being rich helps too.

Harrison told reporters on Tuesday he spends between $400,000 and $600,000 annually on "body work."

"You want to be able to stay in this business for awhile, you're gonna have to take care of your body," he said. "If you want to do that, you're going to have to spend money, it's not cheap."

OK, but half a million dollars? This kind of seems, well, impossible, and a reporter in attendance astutely asked how the bill gets so high.

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Harrison explained that he owns a hyperbaric chamber and keeps six different masseuses on his payroll, in addition to a homeopathic doctor, chiropractor and acupuncturist.

Harrison said his Steelers teammates used to call him a "massage whore," a name earned by the 2-4 hours of massages he receives each day. Harrison said he auditioned around 150 massage specialists before settling on his rotation.

This is all real stuff said in real press conference in front of real reporters. Remember James Harrison the next time a $19.99 gym membership gives you pause.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.

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