Keeping up with the Pack: How Toronto players are keeping on top of their nutrition in lockdown

The coronavirus lockdown has necessitated several changes to the way we live our lives, and this includes how and what we eat. 

In the next instalment of the Keeping up with the Pack series, spoke to Toronto Wolfpack players and staff about how they’re managing their diets during lockdown, and what they’re doing to ensure they eat healthily.

Should we change how we eat during lockdown?

When you consider that you won’t be burning as much energy as you normally would – because you’re not able to leave the house as much – it’s probably a good idea to keep on top of how many calories you’re eating.

When you’re staying at home, it’s certainly advisable to not eat more than you would usually, because that’s more likely to narrow or negate your calorie deficit, and can lead to weight gain.

So for many of us who can’t train as much as we normally do, or aren’t walking to work, this might necessitate changing our diets; whether it’s lighter foods or smaller portions.

Treated asked the Toronto players how their diets had changed in recent weeks.

Gaz O’Brien

“I’m one of the lucky ones! I’ve just got to try and continue to put on weight really. So as far as a diet goes it’s probably a good thing because I’m not training as much.

“At the weekends we’ve been set that we’ve got to cover the distance we usually would in a game, on a road-run. So maybe before that I’ll have a big carb meal. But as I say, I’m one of the lucky ones, because I don’t have to be too strict with my diet. I can look at a bowl of pasta and not really put any weight on.

“I know what’s bad and what’s good. As far as keeping count of calories, I don’t really have to worry too much about that. It’s probably more the bigger boys that’ve got to do that kind of stuff.”

Bodene Thompson

“I’m just sticking to the same diet I’ve been on all year. But you know in saying that, you’ve got to be a bit wary about what you’re eating. I just try intermittent fasting. Some days or at least once a week I try and fast for 24 hours.

“Say if I have a big dinner the night before, I just say the next day I’m going to intermittent fast until dinner again. So I try and do that once a week, if not every week then at least once every 14 days. It just helps to make sure the body is reset and using everything. Every day I usually fast until lunch time.

“And I drink water. Just try and drink as much water as I can get in, which is normally probably two to three litres a day. Your body feels good after it, and with all the science these days you know, it’s got a lot of good studies behind it.”

Gadwin Springer

“I try to have less carbs. I still eat some vegetables high in protein, because I still train, I still go and run, and do some exercise. So I still try and keep my protein high. So I just stay low on my carbs.”

Tony Gigot

“I try and focus my body weight on 93 (kilos). That’s where I like to be. I don’t follow a very hard diet, but I eat well. I can see some players who go very hard, never eating any sugar. But that makes me happy, not every day, but on the weekend I like to have a Coca-Cola or if I can have a McDonalds once a week then I will. I am careful.

“When I see my body weight goes up too much I try to go back to white chicken with salad and soup. You know, no sugar, a lot of water. That’s what I do when I’m too heavy.”

Hakim Miloudi

“For dinner I try to eat a salad with meat. During lunchtime, sometimes pasta, if not I try to eat vegetables with meat or chicken. For me, if I don’t want to put too much weight on, I just eat a lot of vegetables. So I can stay fit with that.”

As Hakim illustrates, staying indoors can present challenges. Boredom might cause us to turn to less healthy snacks. So it’s important to keep moderation in mind.

Hakim Miloudi

“If it’s a really long day, and you have nothing to do and you’re watching TV, and you wanna eat some chocolate – my bad thing is Nutella.”

Tony Gigot

“He’s big on Nutella, Hakim – loves Nutella on pancakes.”

Hakim Miloudi

“That’s my really bad thing, because I can eat Nutella with everything.”

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