Portuguese athlete Cristiano Ronaldo, considered by many to be the best footballer in the world, is still among the sport’s elite at 36, an age at which many footballers have already retired from professionalism or are making plans to move to compete in less demanding soccer leagues than European ones.
In addition to the talent that has led him to achieve titles in several European countries, the key of the Portuguese also lies in maintaining a strict routine and a specific diet to be able to stay in the elite of the sport not only with his club, Juventus of Italy, but with his national team of Portugal.
The Juventus star, one of the most winning clubs in Serie A history, has focused his diet on a high protein intake that includes up to six meals a day at intervals of three or four hours. “If you train regularly, it is important to maintain high energy levels to fuel your body and achieve better performance,” said Ronaldo.
Among the soccer player’s favorite foods are steaks, cod and salads, as well as chicken for its high levels of protein and low fat content. You also eat plenty of whole-grain carbohydrates, fruits, and vegetables, and avoid sugary foods. “Of course, sometimes I eat pizza with my son. Because if not, I’m going to get bored “, revealed the athlete.
Luis Lavrador, the chef of the Portugal soccer team, assured that Ronaldo loves fresh fish. “He eats all kinds of dishes, as a responsible athlete that he is, but the one he likes the most is fish such as sea bream, swordfish and sea bass,” said the chef.
To eat six times a day, Ronaldo starts the day with a breakfast consisting of ham, cheese and low-fat yogurt. Then he consumes a first lunch with chicken and salad, although later he is fed a second lunch consisting of tuna, eggs, salad and olives.
Later, Ronaldo has a small snack of fresh fruit and toast with avocado, while dinner number 1 includes swordfish and salad. Finally, the last dinner of the day is made up of meat and squid, with which the Portuguese footballer completes his six daily meals.
It should be noted that this food diet is accompanied by five naps during the day and that also always includes at least eight hours of sleep at night to keep his body and mind rested after workouts.
Cristiano Ronaldo complements his team’s workouts with exercises in his personal gym, in addition to frequently resorting to muscle recovery tools such as cryotherapy, a therapy that implements the use of intense cold to freeze and destroy diseased or exhausted tissue.
Cryotherapy fights muscle pain and reduces muscle swelling, inflammation or sprains, which is why Ronaldo has invested close to £ 50,000 (almost $ 70,000) in a special cryotherapy chamber that he soaks in for three minutes at less 160 and minus 200 degrees Celsius.
The Portuguese not only carries out weight training, but combines his routines with cardiovascular exercises such as running or rowing. He also usually performs Pilates sessions to strengthen the ‘core’.
“You can do an abs workout in your bedroom when you wake up in the morning or before you go to bed. If you put yourself into a routine, it will be easier for you, as it will become a habit”, concludes the Italian Juventus star.