Mixed martial arts have become one of the most physically demanding sports and features some of the fittest athletes. Strict workout plans and keeping fit plays a major role for these fighters, but don’t underestimate the diet as this allows the athlete to perform all the work outs and have enough energy to defeat their opponents.
MMA consists of multiple combat styles, including Brazilian jiu-jitsu, kickboxing, wrestling and more. As some would know, each of these combat methods have their own highly demanding workout routines and specific diets. Now, combine all the programs to get to where a mixed martial artist needs to perform.
It is not only to perform all the workouts, but also to perform better than their opponent and to stay mentally sharp during a fight. Most fighters follow a very strict diet, which might be different to other fighters, but in most cases it all comes down to about the same focus, which is what we’re looking at below.
One this refers to eating meals that mostly consist of and processed foods. For example, from a fresh vegetables and meats, unsweetened dairy, seeds and nuts form part of an on/off season diet for most MMA fighters.
Instead of a diet, this becomes a lifestyle, not only for the fighters but their family’s as well. In the beginning, it might be difficult to avoid takeout, fizzy cold drinks and all those sweet treats, but it actually does not take long to get used to the lifestyle, after which the desire for the bad foods soon disappears.
Remember to leave some carbs in the diet as this provides most of the energy required to perform all the workouts and keep going for longer. At the same time, do not consume too many carbs and one time as this would actually end up slowing you down.
Cutting for Fight Week
MMA categories depend on your weight, which is why fighters tend to cut down on their body weight a week or 2 before a fight. Some even starve themselves to lose the weight, but it’s is the worst way of doing it as it decreases your power and motivation to exercise, making you both lighter and weaker just before the fight.
Instead, it is recommended that only lean meats and vegetables are consumed but keep to multiple meals per day that your body has become used to. At the same time, be sure to cut back on your portion sizes and increase the amount of water a consume daily.
Some fighters even choose to replace their meals with protein shakes that offer even more energy. However, be sure to consume the right amount of water and add at least fruit to your diet. Soup is yet another great way to substitute dinner and cut down on the weight without losing energy for the next day. There are various types of soup that offer excellent nutrition, which is key for the weeks leading up to fight week.