Phil Holmes BA (Hons), PGCE, Adv Dip.Nut MRSPH

The contradiction when watching elite sport

I’ve just ticked my bucket list with a trip to Twickenham to watch England play Wales. Wonderful. Good friends, a brilliant atmosphere and a win made it live up to all expectations. Over 80,000 others shared this experience and had the opportuntiy to see two sets of elite, finely tuned human specimens, purpose built to excel in their profession.

Yet I can’t help but have reservations about how we look after our bodies during such events. Ok, I’m not a killjoy; this is our leisure time and it’s the players working environment. But the Guinness flowed like the rivers through winter and the main provision for food took the shape of a foot long hotdog in a white roll. It may only be one day’s worth of food but for many, we allow this ‘treat’ day to give further excuses to fuel poorly. Friday night might be takeaway night after a long tough week. Sunday becomes recovery day and can be a full english as a starting point. We are back at the grindstone on a Monday and the hamster wheel rolls again with us using a lack of time, fatigue, emails, deadlines, children, pets (often hard to distinguish) as reasons why we can’t eat better.

So the message for today is we have to take more responsibility. We have close friends but they don’t always want to see us improve – so they may twist your arm to choose an extra drink etc. Elite rugby teams have a shared goal and will support each other as they know, as a collective, they increase chances to be successful.

This is where I can be your teammate. I can help, encourage and support you as you set off in pursuit of improvement and success. We all love feeling and looking good; it allows us to sparkle. Please contact me if you are looking to raise your game. You don’t have to be professional to be professional.