Horse racing requires a strong level of fitness from their leading jockeys. The best jockeys must have an incredible level of stamina to maintain their poise and concentration at the reins in key areas of the race. Their diet must be impeccable as every pound off eases the pressure on their horse to carry the load around the track.
Kentucky Derby winner Victor Espinoza has a strict training regime that includes cardio – running at least five times a week over a distance of six miles. He then works out in the gym with low weights to ensure that he keeps his muscles defined, but not so large they impact his weight. Espinoza also swims on a regular basis to work all of his muscle groups in a similar way to riding.
Jockeys in the United Kingdom such as James Doyle and Tom Marquand also have a vigorous routine that has allowed them to develop into two of the leading stars in the sport. Their commitment to excellence has seen them earn continual winners on the circuit, and their performances are always worth tracking on the online bet results for a potential wager in the future, particularly at Newmarket and Newbury racecourse, although the wins they crave more than most come at Royal Ascot in June.
Doyle has been renowned for his discipline regarding his weight, while Marquand has a stringent workout programme to ensure that he is at his physical peak throughout the flat season. They are top-quality competitors and will continue to thrive at the top level of the sport.
Of course, horse riding is not the only – or even the most obvious – sport that demands a perfect training regime. Footballers are required to possess an incredible level of stamina. The majority of players will run over 10km during a game, which has to include the ability to pace yourself in the mould of a distance-runner along with being able to raise the intensity of your speed in sharp sprints. The elite teams in the sport play at least three times a week without a break over the course of a nine-month campaign. At the same time, those players have to deliver their technical skills at a high level.
The modern-day footballer must be at the physical peak of his/her powers. Gone are the days when players could enjoy a few pints of beer and a cigarette before and after a game. Nowadays teams demand that their players are in prime condition. Those that slack and are off the pace are quickly exposed, particularly due to the intensity of matches played in the Premier League and Champions League.
A healthy diet is also essential. There are no trips to McDonald’s or KFC allowed, with players restricted to intakes of pasta, chicken and fish to provide the nutrition to fuel their on-field exploits. It can be a mundane lifestyle, but it is the sacrifice that top players must make to ensure that they can reach the peak levels of performance on a regular basis.
No player has epitomised this level of commitment off the field more than Cristiano Ronaldo. Even with his outstanding talent on the pitch, Ronaldo still puts himself through an intense workout regime, including cardio, circuit training and weights-based exercises. It is no surprise that the Portuguese continues to excel on the field even at the age of 36. With Ronaldo’s work ethic, he could play at a high level until the age of 40, something that would seemingly be unthinkable 20 to 30 years ago.
As we’ve seen with footballers and jockeys, dedication to a training regime is crucial to success and longevity at the highest level of the sport. It will continue to separate those who are committed to the long hours needed and those who are not.