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July 22, 2017

Train (and More) Like Cristiano Ronaldo

The night before a game, Cristiano Ronaldo drinks either tea with honey or milk and takes a very hot bath for about 20 minutes. The routine is as relaxing as it is athletically strategic, because Ronaldo firmly believes that “smart details” like these make the biggest difference in his ability to perform better than, well, arguably anyone at his sport.

Though his workouts are relentless (he’s no stranger to two-a-days), Ronaldo knows that if he wants to be the best he has to master every aspect of his health that affects his performance. “Eat well, stay hydrated and sleep properly,” says Ronaldo. “This has been my focus since I started my career.”

Ronaldo’s 360-degree approach to training is why Nike teamed up with him to launch Nike+ Training Club’s new series of athlete workouts that feature holistic health and motivation tips. The result is a new experience that aims to add to everyone’s training journey by offering the following:

  • Do-anywhere workouts the athlete really does provided by the athlete’s trainer

  • Simple nutrition and recovery tips from the athlete during a workout’s rest periods

  • The ability to unlock workout challenges after finishing an athlete’s workout (completing these earns you sharable badges)

  • A feed packed with informative videos and articles where the athlete shares tips on their nutrition, hydration, recovery and motivation  

  • Suggestions on what gear to get to help you perform your best

Joaquin Sanda, Ronaldo’s fitness pro and a Nike Trainer, helped distill the athlete’s workouts to a series of routines that focus on quickness and agility as well as building strength via body weight— key to his performance on the pitch but also applicable (and accessible) for any athlete of any level looking to get fitter and feel better.

“Because the core functions to stabilize the entire body, maintain proper muscular and joint stability and allows for proper biomechanics, core workouts are critical to Cristiano’s health and longevity as an athlete,” says Sanda. Drawing directly from his programs for Ronaldo, the app’s 15-minute Quick Hit Abs workout offers nine movements that target the core from every angle.

Similarly, the 15-minute Quick Hit Lower Body routine is made up of bodyweight exercises that build strength and power from the waist down. “The stronger the core, lower back and glutes, the better Cristiano will move, whether the demand be a short run, explosive drill or long endurance work," says Sanda. "Together, these workouts in the app can create a healthy foundation for athletes of any sport and level."

Sanda also shares some of Ronaldo’s simple nutrition secrets. For example, recipes for clean and easy-to-make meals that nourish his body and are easily digested (one dinner recipe includes quinoa, chicken and watermelon).

Ronaldo prides himself on his discipline. “My key is to be focused and to dedicate myself 100 percent of the time,” he says. Superhuman as he may seem, he has his off days just like anyone else. “Some days I don’t feel motivated, but I stop and I say, ‘I have to do it, because it’s going to give me good things in the future.’ This is my motivation.”

Two new workouts featuring Ronaldo will be available July 22. Another will release shortly after. Download the NTC app here.