Muay Thai. We have just put that there so that you can read it and realize how cool it sounds. Yup, we are tricky sometimes, but guess what – We always try to help you learn something new and improve your fighting skills. Today’s topic is about diet. Not just any diet, but a Muay Thai diet.
You must have noticed that professional athletes pay a lot of attention to their diets, almost always they mention it up when they are interviewed. Diet plans are not the same for everyone. They depend on different things that can be summed up by questions like:
What are you trying to accomplish? What’s your body type? What is your sport? Are you an alien?
In this article we will cover the things that you need to know about diet in general, but most importantly, the things you need to know about a Muay Thai diet. Actual Muay Thai fighters talked about it, so with their experience and knowledge combined with ours, you will learn everything that you need, and more.
WHY IS A DIET SO IMPORTANT?
If you are trying to get bigger, stronger, maybe faster than you are now, or just lose some weight for a next fight (or just to look good), then diet is something you MUST consider. Some people make a mistake and think that diets are those things that woman use to lose belly fat. We would need 10 days to explain it to the fullest how wrong that claim is, so here’s a shorter version.
A well organized diet plan can help you in many different goals, not just losing fat. Like we mentioned, those goals can go from getting bigger to jumping higher. So, just working out won’t get you where you want to go.
Strength develops through the mouth!
Proteins, carbs, vitamins, are the things that you need, that will help you develop the things that you want. You can get them only by consuming food. A well thought diet plan will balance all of these so that you can accomplish your goals. Some bodybuilders even said that their results are made 40 % in the gym and 60% in the kitchen.
Food will build you, or destroy you. Whatever you eat, feeds not only the body, but the mind as well! With that being said, you should be careful with what you eat. Think of your body like it’s a car. You need to put in the right fuel in order for it to work. You must maintain a good diet, especially if you are an athlete, and if you are a fighter, then even more. Don’t think of it as of something cruel. After a while it becomes a habit, just a part of a healthy lifestyle and the process of getting better.
If you are a fighter then here is what you should consider.
Eat like a real fighter
Besides from hours upon hours of training Muay Thai, being good at this martial art will require that you eat the “right” food as well. Let’s dig in.
How do Muay Thai fighters from Thailand eat?
This martial art origins from Thailand, a very hot Southeast Asian country. Of course, the best source of information about Muay Thai will come from that place. Here is what they had to say about their diets.
Fighters from Thailand actually don’t have to worry that much about their food, because Thai food is already healthy and balanced. Of course, they have and avoid junk food, but in general, Thai food has all the right stuff so they don’t brainstorm that much about what they’re eating.
Food that they eat and that you should too, is: rice, vegetables (all sorts), fish, beef, chicken. If they aren’t having breakfast, lunch, dinner, they use fruit as a snack. So no cakes and stuff like that, you can change that food and eat something that will actually help you. Fruit is delicious, not as sweet as candy, but if you want to become better at Muay Thai, then make no excuses.
NOTE: Eat 2 hours before training, or after your training. Eating right before your Muay Thai workout will slow you down and stop you from performing well. You must give your food some time to digest, otherwise you might end up being in pain.
Depending on what time it is, here is how their diet plan looks like:
Morning – Breakfast
Before you start eating, and right after you wake up – drink water or fruit juice! It is very important for you to start your day like that and hydrate your body right from the start. Most of our body is water, so doing this will only bring you good. Pour yourself a glass of water that’s not too cold, and not too hot. This will wake up your entire system like nothing else. Remember to drink plenty of water throughout the entire day.
After that, you can have some rice, oatmeal and fill your breakfast with some fruit. You know how they say, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”. Actually, you can eat rice in any time of the day, but the most effective results will come if you eat it as breakfast. It is easy to digest and full with proteins.
Thailand Muay Thai fighters normally eat fish meat, chicken or beef for lunch. You can make a pretty good meal if you combine rice with chicken. This will fill you up like nothing else, and make you full with energy. To make this combination even better, they eat vegetables as well. Green is good for you!
Evening – Dinner
You guessed it, rice again. They aren’t that creative with their food, but what they eat does wonders for your body, especially if you are training Muay Thai. Rice, combined with meat again will provide you a powerful dinner to call it a day. If you have eaten fish for lunch, then eat some other meat for dinner, if you can. If not, fish is also good.
At night, they drink more water, especially if they didn’t drink enough throughout the day. A protein shake also comes in mind but it isn’t necessary. Everything that you need you can get from food.
NOTE: Remember to take vitamin C and calcium every day. They are good for your immune system, bones and your muscles.
So, if you can, you should eat like a real Muay Thai fighter.
Here is something that you can use if you have a hard time picking healthy food. It really depends on where you live – your country’s location, its climate, poverty level etc.
What people outside of Thailand can use as substitute to some meals:
- Cereal, flakes, black bread.
- Yoghurt, milk, fruit shakes, rehydration drinks.
- Fruits in general as well as veggies.
RULES of the diet:
Don’t eat junk food!
Yes, it is called junk for a reason. You can have a “cheat” meal from time to time, it won’t kill you or destroy your progress, but don’t make it frequent. If you train your body to want and crave for junk food you can only get fat and even sick!
If you are a serious athlete and have a goal in front of yourself then DISCIPLINE yourself. You made your body want junk food, you can make it want healthy food as well.
McDonald’s is a no! KFC is a no! Anything fried is a no! Too much chocolate and candy is a no!
In the words of the green Jedi Master, Yoda – “Kill you, junk food will”.
If you recognize something from these pictures, think of it like it’s lava. You don’t want to touch lava, right?
Enjoy your food!
You shouldn’t be eating because you have to, eat because you can and enjoy every bite of it. Some people can’t afford it, keep that in mind, so be thankful that you have food on your table. Also, another reason why you should enjoy food is because you will eat more and get the right amount of, well, everything from it that you need. This is psychology. You won’t feel full until your body says you’re full.
Of course, it depends on what you want. If you are trying to cut some weight, then rules change, but in general, you must eat a lot if you’re putting a fair amount of work into your training. How many times did you leave your food because you were in a hurry? That can do damage to the body.
Remember to eat slow, and CHEW your food! Some food, you should chew even to 30 times before swallowing! This is a fact. It helps you digest it easier and saves you from the awful pain.
EAT at THE RIGHT TIME!
We already told you when Thailand fighters eat. You have to follow that as well. So, eating when you are hungry and when you feel like it is a big no! You know when your Muay Thai workouts are, you know when your strength and condition workouts are, well, you should know when you should eat also! Don’t fit your diet according to your training, it’s the other way around! Remember, diet is really important, set your workout alarm later so that you have plenty of time to enjoy your food.
Late night meals aren’t good! Avoid eating any time after 10 pm. In other words, no more 2AM walks to the fridge.
Find something that works for you!
We are all different, so don’t copy some famous Muay Thai fighter’s diet plan that you read online about. Go find out what diet plan is ideal for you and your body type. Make it fit your goal, not empty your pockets that much, and make it fun!
The only way you can see what’s right for you is if you start somewhere. You don’t need gurus to give you a plan. Think of something, try it, and see if it’s what you hoped for. It won’t happen overnight, but eventually you will succeed.
What to eat if you are cutting weight?
We are familiar with the struggle of a fighter. From time to time you must gain some weight, and on the other hand, the harder one, you must lose some of it.
What you should avoid if you are cutting, is rice and other carbohydrates. Rice is a Muay Thai fighter’s best friend, but in this situation, you must let it go.
Carbohydrates provide you energy, so don’t cut them off completely, just know your measure and don’t go over it. You can eat fruits, vegetables, drink water at ANY TIME.
Special herbs that can help you with
Also known as black ginger, is a herb that originates from Thailand. It is mainly used to boost a man’s sex drive, but it is also very common in Muay Thai.
Black ginger increases energy, improves your physical performance, reduces pain and improves your blood flow.
Also known as the “Russian steroid” is another gift from nature that is very helpful when it comes to Muay Thai. This herb improves your learning capacity, helps you with endurance and does wonders for your body recovery. Also, it is an antidepressant.
There it is folks, we covered everything that you need to know about the Muay Thai diet. Now it’s all up to you to make a plan and stick to it.
Practice + good diet = what the hell you want to accomplish!