Boxing Nutrition: Reach Peak Performance with this Tip

George Lockhart - Manuka Doctor Guest Author
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Best-known for his work with boxers Tyson Fury, Joseph Parker and UFC Champ Conor McGregor, Lockhart has coached over 100 UFC fighters in nutrition and weight management. His novel approach to food, dieting and cutting weight has proven results and drastically changed the world of boxing and martial arts.

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“Rounding off 15 weeks of intense preparation, now we get ready for the big one”

As we get closer to the Tyson’s fight on Saturday 23rd April, I wanted to write about pre-workout or pre-fight nutrition for peak performance.

I’ll save Tyson’s pre-fight meal for our next email later this week (and trust me you’ll really like that!) but this time around let’s talk about something you can also try and home.

The best pre-fight, pre-workout, or pre-activity nutrition.

You see our bodies are always burning a mixture of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. And the brain is controlling your body to make sure it runs well.

But there are some subtle tweaks you can make to encourage your brain to fire the right signals to your brain at the right time.

The theory goes that in order to preserve life, your mind will start to down-regulate performance well before your physical limit is reached.

And for fighters, you need to overcome that for peak performance.

I often put it this way…

Imagine someone told you to run 5X 100 metre sprints one after the other. I can tell you now which one would be your fastest time. You want to know why?

First run. Your heart rate will go crazy, upto say 120 bpm. Your brain starts to go into panic mode as your breathing spikes as the body demands more.

Second run. This will be a slower time that your first. As your body is now in a crisis working out what’s happening. Your brain is literally controlling your muscles.

Third run. Your heart rate won’t go up a considerable amount more, maybe 125bpm. So your body starts to think “OK, we are dealing with this now.” And your time will be the same as your previous run.

Fourth run. Now your body has worked out the pattern. It’s getting the blood and oxygen to the right places. It’s realised you’re not having a heart attack, and actually your heart rate hasn’t spiked further so your performance at this point actually starts to IMPROVE.

Fifth run. This will always be your fastest time. They call it the Theory of Perception.

So how can we apply this theory to peak performance in Boxing and Fighting?

One way is to trick the body into thinking it’s the best prepared it could be.

My tip is to use Manuka honey right before a fight or a workout (and I mean, right before). I guess some people may call this a “sugar hit” but there is a scientific reason behind the term too.

There is a receptor in your brain that if you take in something sweet, your brain thinks you’ve got a good amount of glycogen as soon as it touches your mouth. I’m sure you’ve all felt the ZING you get from something sweet. That’s it.

You see, the body is always trying to protect itself. If your body doesn’t think it has a high amount of carbs, your anaerobic capabilities will be limited. When you take that Manuka honey, those signals are overridden. Your body thinks it has a high carb load, so your performance will be improved.

I’ve been doing this a long time with wrestlers, boxers and fighters and time and again, this method works.

Until next time.

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