With World Cup fever underway, soccer players prove to be one of the fittest and strongest athletes on the field. But have you ever wondered how soccer players stay so fit and strong?
While an average soccer match involves the athlete covering about seven miles during a 90-minute match, soccer players make it look so effortless as they manage to stay engaged in the game with strength, stamina and impressive endurance.
All these skills come from hours of training and 100% commitment to the sport. Besides regular training during the off-season, soccer players also follow a diet that complements their training and effectively builds muscle.
With so much competition and talented individuals out there, it comes as no surprise that soccer athletes have a vigorous routine that involves a lot of hard work and determination to be able to dominate on the field.
Tips to Stay Fit Like a Soccer Player
Get ready to run and train yourself like a soccer player to engage your muscles like never before.
1. Run, Run, Run
Yes, running is a major component of soccer, therefore, it’s time to turn your favorite running playlist on and get your legs moving. Rather than engaging in long distance running, switch to high interval intensity training (HIIT) to improve stamina and enhance overall endurance.
With HIIT, you will challenge yourself during periods of explosive exercise, followed by a recovery period where you’re still moving as you prepare for the next set of sprints.
2. Eat Your Fruits and Veggies
Fitness doesn’t just stop at the gym. Your diet also plays an important role in keeping you healthy and active. Avoid eating the junk food out there and incorporate lots of fruits, vegetables, proteins and healthy carbs into your meal plan.
While carbs are essential to keeping you energized, protein is good for muscle building and repair. However, just like everything else, moderation is key when looking for results.
3. Boost Mental Health
As you work on your physical fitness, your mental health is also important to take care of. Straight from Christiano Ronaldo himself, the famous soccer player encourages training your mind and focusing on your mental health in order to achieve your goals.
4. Work on Your Core
Working on your core isn’t just to have good looking abs. While abs are attractive and may help to boost self-esteem, a strong core promotes balance and stability in order for you to switch directions quickly, increasing or decreasing your speed on the field.
Exercises such as planks and push-ups keep the core engaged and strengthen the surrounding muscles that will up your game on the soccer field.
5. Get Lots of Sleep
Sleep is extremely important when it comes to maintaining your overall fitness. While you’re asleep, your body works hard to repair and rejuvenate the cells and muscles that are needed for optimal performance.
Getting enough sleep especially before a big game also keeps you energized and awake as you take on your competition during the game.
6. Stay Hydrated
Drink a lot of water. You’ve probably heard this time and time again, however, it’s for good reason. With the amount of exercise and training you put yourself through, it is important to keep your body hydrated and replenished at all times.
Refueling your system with water and avoiding overindulgence in sugary drinks and alcohol will maximize performance and keep your fitness game strong.
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MailOnline, J. B. (2015, February 06). Cristiano Ronaldo reveals ‘top 15 fitness tips’ to get a body like his. Retrieved from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2942526/Cristiano-Ronaldo-reveals-15-health-fitness-tips-body-like-alcohol-forbidden-ll-need-early-night.html
Jussim, M. (2018, June 28). What Soccer Players Should to Eat to Stay Fit and Command the Pitch. Retrieved from https://www.mensjournal.com/sports/what-soccer-players-should-eat-stay-fit-and-command-pitch/
(n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.redbull.com/ie-en/football-fitness-training-tips-drills