General fitness: having been asked about this, the best way to get fit for football is to play more!
There’s not many sports prepare you in the same way, hockey, possibly rugby. General core aerobic fitness from things
like running will help. Cycling is good – a few miles regularly will build up those quads and calves which will help with speed and
power in kicking. But the best way – more games.
Supplements: If anyone has joints that are feeling their age (I felt mine by the time I was 26!)
then there are two obvious things to think about taking. Cod liver oil is proven to work (you’ll want the pills and not the liquid!).
For help with niggly injuries, joints, tendons etc, then Glucosamine Sulphate with Chondroitin is recommended by physios. I take this, and it definitely works.
HOWEVER: If you’ve got any chronic problem with a specific area (knee, groin, ankle, whatever) that won’t go away then go to the physio. Don’t ignore it!
Matchday / training food:
Aim for a high carb, low protein and v low fat diet before a game. Fried stuff
is worst (and takes longest to digest) Since football is short blasts of energy,
go for carb rich foods – if it’s a morning game, breads and cereals plus fruit
juice. Ideally no caffeine on matchdays because it lowers blood sugar. Those
lucozade or similar sports drinks 30-20 minutes before a game are great because
they’re high in glucose (which apparently is a carb). Afternoon games, similar
sort of breakfast, low fat sandwich maybe for lunch (ham, turkey, tuna etc). No
Atkins diets then! But lots of banananas.
Also those little energy bar thingies that the cyclists have are good too.
They’re especially good for half time to stop you getting rubber legs after 70
After games, try and replace the lost carbs and salts/fluids within TWO hours.
It’ll hurt less, honest.
And invest in a pair of shinpads that fit and are comfy.