Nutrition and the Etihad

Homemade 'Paleola'

In one of my favourite books Psycho-Cybernetics, scientist Maxwell Maltz claims that it takes a minimum of 21 days to form a new habit.

Moving into week 4 of my recovery I have found this to be somewhat true, especially with my food! As I have said in my previous blogs, I have been very disciplined with what I am fuelling my body with, as I know nutrition plays a vital part in all aspects of recovery.

However, I have had a lot of cravings and it has been very tough. I have taken all refined sugars out of my diet (except for half a teaspoon with a cup of tea) and after lots of research I knew a sugar crash would come, a sugar crash is that moment when your mind feels fuzzy, you have a headache, you feel lethargic and you are desperate for a Mars bar! Anyway, this week I feel that all of them cravings have gone and I am no longer looking in the back of our kitchen cupboards hoping to find an old Twix bar.

Ben Coomber's Bodytype Nutrition
Ben Coomber’s Bodytype Nutrition

Emptying our cupboards of anything that we don’t consider to have a nutritional benefit has been key to staying on track. If it’s not in the house, you can’t eat it! I have been so lucky that my wife Emma has been able to help me, Emma is a Personal Trainer and she is fascinated with nutrition. She has been studying a course developed by Ben Coomber called Body Type Nutrition. Ben Coomber is a bit of a nutritional guru, if anyone reading this is interested in nutrition you have to listen to his podcasts, they are brilliant and so informative. He understands that not everyone is an expert and explains the concepts very simply to make it easy to understand. I follow him on Twitter and Instagram and he always puts good stuff on there too.

With the help of Emma and her ever increasing knowledge we have put together meal plans for the week so we know exactly what we are eating every day, this has definitely helped as I think its when you are not prepared, this is when you are most likely to grab something quick and on the run which might not be great for you. I identified certain foods that will optimize my recovery and without going into too much detail of their benefits, I knew my diet had to be full of leafy greens like kale and spinach, good quality protein like eggs, fish and lean meats, good fats like nuts, seeds and avocados, good quality fruit (especially berries) and vegetables, try to only drink water or green tea (I’ll always have a normal brew though twice a day!) and reduce refined sugars as much as possible. To give you an idea of what and how I eat here is a typical day;

homemade ‘Paleola’
Homemade ‘Paleola’
  • Breakfast – Omelette with Ham, Onions and Mushrooms
  • Lunch – Salmon, Sweet Potatoes, Spinach and Lettuce / Tea / Chicken and loads of Vegetables
  • Snacks – On the way to Wolverhampton I’ll take a smoothie in the car that contains: Kale, Broccoli, Avocado, Ginger, Celery, Pineapple, Banana and Flax seeds.
  • After my weights or CV session – I will have a Vegan Protein Shake.
  • When I get home – I will a have some of our homemade ‘Paleola’ this looks like Granola but contains Almonds, Coconut oil, Nuts and seeds and some local honey.
  • In the evening – I will have a bowl of Greek Yoghurt with Blueberries, Strawberries and Raspberries.

It might seem boring to some people but there is a lot of food there and it has made a huge difference. My body fats have come down and my muscle mass has gone up and I am convinced it improving my healing!

My son Jack at Man City vs Spurs at the Etihad
My son Jack at Man City vs Spurs at the Etihad
Jack meeting my good friend Joe Hart
Jack meeting my good friend Joe Hart

My week has been quite similar to the previous in terms of treatments, exercise and schedule but I am getting a lot more comfortable putting weight through my foot even though it is with the big aircast boot on. I can get rid of the crutches on Monday and then I will have 2 final weeks in the aircast boot until I can put some normal footwear back on and be full weight bearing.

I’m looking forward to Monday as I can start incorporating swimming and bike sessions into my fitness work. It will be nice to start exercising with my legs again and take some emphasis away from all the upper body work I have been doing. I’m especially looking forward to getting in the pool. Swimming is something I have always enjoyed and it will give me the opportunity to do some sessions away from the training ground and from a mental point of view it will be good to get a change of scenery.

Away from Wolves and myself, my little boy Jack is football mad and he has been desperate for me to take him to a Premier league game. I had tickets for Everton vs Swansea at Goodison Park but unfortunately this was the day after I got injured against QPR so I wasn’t able to take him. He was gutted, he had wrote out the teams and had been revising all of their names so he knew who exactly he was going to be watching. I promised him as soon as my foot was a bit better I would take him to a game.

I managed to get me and him tickets to watch Man City vs Spurs at the Etihad on Sunday, he had been so excited all week leading up to the game and we had a magical day together. It’s usually Jack watching me play so I really loved taking him to a big game as father and son.

From the moment we got there and we watched the teams arrive on the bus to the moment he passed out in the car on the way home he had the biggest smile on his face! We met Joe Hart after the game and even though Jack has met him before this was the first time he has seen him knowing exactly what a famous player he is!

Joe was kind enough to give Jack his match shirt and sign it for him, he also signed a little team sheet that Jack had made, Jack was so grateful. Joe even took him down to the dressing rooms and onto the pitch for a picture, he was such a lucky little boy! When he got back in the car I turned to him and he said, “Daddy, this has been the best day I have ever had!” I had such a lovely day watching him enjoy himself, unfortunately Man City didn’t win but that didn’t take the smile off his face. After meeting Joe I did say to Jack “Did you know that daddy once scored past Joe when Wolves beat Man City?” he looked at me like I was mad!

Thanks again for reading!



309 thoughts on “Nutrition and the Etihad”

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