The RL diet: Why do rugby players have protein shakes?

Drew Darbyshire

The rugby league diet is our new feature where we give you an insight in to the eating habits of your favourite professional players, in partnership with Heaven ‘N’ Health.

Former Salford, North Wales, Dewsbury, Rochdale and Leigh forward Toby Adamson is our latest guest…

How many shakes does a rugby player have a day?

“I have one shake a day. I get a lot of protein from my regular meals so I don’t need a lot of shakes to be honest.

“Protein shakes are good for people who don’t have enough time to have a full meal in or don’t consume enough calories because they are just quick and easy. They are convenient and important for us as rugby players.

“Whey protein is a great snack for anyone. They taste pretty good and it’s a healthy snack for you rather than having like a chocolate bar or packet of crips.”

Why do players have protein shakes?

“If you have your protein porridge in the morning and have your regular meal at midday then get a bit tired in the afternoon – if you have a whey protein shake then that is pretty good for you.

“There are no bad sugars in them, they are all good carbs and it’s good protein. If you then have a meal at night then you will get all good supplements in to your body and that’s a good reason why meal preps work.”

How much protein do players have on a game day?

“There is so little carbs in meat and you need carbs for your energy and that comes from your noodles and brown rice so when it is game day, you don’t actually need that much protein because your body is having to digest it.

“We’ll have stuff like feta cheese with pasta on game day without meat in it just for pure energy through the carbs.”

What if your protein intake from your meals are low?

“You can always supplement your protein through whey protein and it is just good having a balance.

“Everything with nutrition is about balance, you can have whey protein as well but you should be getting your protein from your food, chicken and your plant-based stuff.

“You don’t specifically need a lot of whey protein but it helps when building muscle and it’s good to keep your protein levels up.”

How is business with meal prep kings Heaven ‘N’ Health going?

“It is going good. We’ve been online for a couple of months which has helped us because we have increased our audience to the whole of the UK.

“We can now send meal preps to people in Scotland and London so it is going well. People want to change their lifestyle for the better and have been coming to us for nutrition advice and food.”

More on site

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Toby Adamson on why pre-season training is crucial

Joe Philbin on intermittent fasting and not eating until midday

Oliver Gildart on what his pre-season bulking regime is like

Jackson Hastings discusses his eating routine in our new food feature