In the world of sports, there are many times when stars of the game are written off before their time. But somehow few of them manage to bounce back and sit at the top of the world once again, proving critics wrong. Such is the feat that Indian badminton star Saina Nehwal has achieved in her career.
Just when critics and fans around the world were certain of the end to the talented athlete’s career, the 29-year-old bounced back and how!
But how does this Indian superstar in the world of sports keeps going, instead of facing so many setbacks and injuries? Yes, Saina has been through many highs and lows in her long career, but she made sure to keep her fitness game perfect all the time. Here are her secrets to being fit for the court.
Like most world-renowned athletes, Saina also believes in breakfast being the most important meal of the day. She makes it a point to not skip her morning meal. It goes without saying that the athlete stays away from junk and oily food completely.
To keep her body energized for her busy schedule every day, Saina eats egg whites and brown bread for breakfast, making sure her body is ready to take on her tight badminton training.
Saina prefers boiled and steamed food for her lunch. She also includes a maximum of two roti’s – with some dal, sabzi, grilled chicken and lassi, keeping in mind that her body doesn’t consume unnecessary fats.
Post lunch, Saina also has a glass of protein shake before and after training.
Her dinner menu is almost the same, but with just one roti, not two.
If she had the choice, Saina says she would add side dishes like besan kadhi, aloo gobhi, aloo mutter and aloo capsicum, clearly hinting at her love for potatoes. To kill her hunger between meals, Saina has healthy fruits or fruit chaat.
On Sundays, the badminton pro lets go and binges on paranthas or naan and often paneer butter masala.
She makes sure to eat her last meal for the day before 7:30 pm. This diet routine makes sure that her body is toned and at the same time strong and ready to take on her badminton duties.
Being the dedicated disciplined professional she is, Saina makes sure her training on and off the pitch is on point. Working out at least six days a week is her mantra to consistent fitness, but she also makes sure to have the seventh day saved for complete rest.
Since the game of badminton requires most effort on the legs and hands, Saina puts in the focus and extra effort in these areas. To increase coordination between her body parts, she practices lateral pulldowns and some rowing exercises which helps in reducing any extra body fats in her arms, strengthening them.
She practices military presses that help in making the arms strong and also contributing to the upper body to provide her with the stamina to hold the racket in long matches.
To make sure injuries don’t delay her recovery, heel and calf raises help her in the lower body core strengthening practice.
Saina also says that she includes basic fitness routines to help her in performing better on the court. Running, push-ups and crunches keep her muscles active.
With a rigorous fitness regime like that, no wonder the talented woman has made a mark in the world of badminton and done her country proud. Saina is the oldest in the Top 10 ranking and still, she has been over-powering the other younger lot.
What’s your excuse?