Training typically consists of strength and conditioning (gym) and skill sessions (field training).  It is common practice for NRL players to participate in multiple training sessions each day e.g. a gym session in the morning and a field session in the afternoon.

GPS data from the NRL show players cover between 5-8km per game. It also shows that backs cover more distance during the game than forwards.  Much of this distance is covered with low-intensity activity (walking or jogging) and high-intensity bursts and sprints spread throughout.

Nutrition plays an important role in optimising performance and is often the forgotten element among athletes. It is important to have a strategic meal plan in place to prevent early fatigue, reduce muscle breakdown and enhance hydration.

For all athletes, it is important that they meet their individual needs by following the fundamentals of a healthy diet.  The following are important for all rugby league players, just in varying amounts.

 

Protein – lean meat, fish, eggs, and dairy are important for maintaining muscle mass and supporting strength gains.

Carbohydrate – rice, quinoa, sweet potato, oats and wholegrain products are essential for energy and fuel for both training and game day.

Healthy fats – avocado, olive oil, nuts and seeds increase the energy content in meals, helping to support high energy needs during heavy training periods.

Fruit and vegetables – broccoli, beans, spinach, kale and carrots help to boost a healthy immune system.

Electrolytes – Sodium, potassium magnesium and calcium are lost through sweat.  These important minerals help you to retain fluid and remain hydrated.

 

The following meal plan provides a snap shot of a typical day in the life of a professional NRL player.

 

Rugby League Meal Plan

Breakfast

Oats (1 cup) + milk (300ml) + trail mix (1 handful) and banana (large) and a glass of orange juice (300ml)

 

Pre-Training (gym)

Musashi Preworkout (9g) + water (300ml)

 

During Training (gym)

Musashi Electrolyte Formula (10g) + water (500ml)

 

Post-Training (gym)

Musashi 100% Whey (30g) + water (250ml) and a piece of fruit (e.g. apple or orange)

 

Lunch

Chicken Sandwich x2

Grilled chicken (85g), wholegrain bread (x4 slices) topped with mixed salad and a thin layer of mayonnaise

 

Pre-Training (field)

Musashi Electrolyte Formula (5g) + water (250ml)

Musashi Deluxe Protein Bar

 

During Training (field)

Musashi Electrolyte Formula (5g) + water (250ml)

 

Post-Training (field)

Musashi 100% Whey (30g) + water (250ml)

Peanut butter on rice cakes (x4) or toast (x2-3) with vegemite

 

Dinner

Meat/ fish (150g)

Rice or couscous (2 cups)

Steamed vegetables (2-3 cups) or Salad (3-4 cups)

 

Snack

Greek Yogurt (200g), raw almonds (1 handful)

Musashi 100% Whey (30g) + water (250ml)

 

Energy requirements can differ depending on age, gender, activity levels, height, weight and health status. For personalised advice, see a sports dietician.