NBA players — even with all that money and all those professional trainers and nutritionists at their fingertips — fall into some bad eating habits like the rest of us.
Coming out of college — where they had buffets of food in the dining hall and coaches trying to get them to bulk up for the more power-based collegiate game — guys eat a lot and it’s not good. And they keep doing that for a few years because when you’re 21 you can abuse your body in ways you just can’t do by the time your 27 or 28. It’s in their mid-20s you generally see players starting to really change their diet and take care of their bodies.
Case in point, John Wall.
Michael Lee and the Washington Post have a great look at John Wall and his life off the court. Which basically involves playing a lot of Madden at his apartment not far from the Verizon Center in Washington.
But watch the video or read the story about Wall’s cupboard of snacks.
Wall opened his pantry door to display bags of Doritos and Funyuns and boxes of oatmeal cream pies, Honey Buns and Cinnamon Toast Crunch bars, which he sometimes packs with him on road trips. “I got all the snacks. All I do is eat snacks,” Wall said, before revealing more junk food options in his freezer and refrigerator. “I don’t eat vegetables. My mom got to make those.”
Wall rubbed his stomach, “I weigh a lot more than when I got here. I got to work on my diet.”
Wall said he has considered hiring a personal chef but for now, his mother has assumed that role. When she is not around, Wall and Williams can be spotted eating at Legal Seafood or getting takeout from P.F. Chang’s.
I’d like to tell you this is unusual. It’s not. Save for the fact there was little discussion of McDonald’s or some other burger joint, it’s pretty common.
Eventually, Wall will get serious about his diet. He’ll find he needs to for the energy. Not that he is going to go Steve Nash diet, but he will eventually start to get serious. But for now, Funyuns. Lots and lots of Funyuns
It’s the latest diet craze — Shaquille O’Neal has said he is on “the Nash diet.” Jared Dudley has asked about it. Bloggers are trying it. Pretty soon they’ll be talking about it on Oprah and then it is on.
That’s Nash as in Steve Nash, still an elite point guard long after most his age have retired and are watching NBA games with a bag of Doritos on their lap. Cool ranch Doritos, for the record, those are the best.
But Nash would not know that. His “diet” is really more of a philosophy, a way of eating that is good for his body and good for the planet. Part of it is actually making sure he gets plenty of sleep. But the rest is cutting out the processed foods and…
Why should I explain it when Nash himself did on his Facebook page?
Fortunately, for me I’ve always loved fruits and vegetables. Actually, I’ve always liked everything and could at least cut out the bad stuff and resort to things I loved: fruits, vegetables and grilled fish and chicken. I used to eat Lots of pasta and rice but now I only eat brown rice or pasta made from a natural food source on occasion. Basically what I’ve tried to do is cut out all the bad sugars, fats and processed foods from my diet.
I believe that eating six smaller meals a day is more healthful than eating three larger meals a day but that can be difficult with our schedule. So much of our time is spent training, playing, traveling and sleeping that I just do what I can…
Breakfast. It is the most important meal of the day…. along with lunch and dinner. I feel if your diet is consistent and well balanced (think long term rather than short term) it isn’t so important what you eat right before you play or the night before because your energy levels and recovery will be on target from the quality of your previous three to seven days of meals.
-Gluten and wheat free cereal, sliced almonds and almond or rice milk. (If you don’t have the sensitivities I have look for a high fiber cereal. At least 4 grams of fiber.) I will also have a whole fruit smoothie or an apple, banana or orange. Green tea.
Lunch. A salad with grilled chicken or fish, vegetables, raw nuts and dried fruit. I will also have fruit afterwards.
Dinner. Grilled or baked fish or chicken with vegetables. Sometimes I’ll have brown rice.