So, you’ve decided to visit the Land of Smiles and give the ol’ Muay Thai a go for the first time. Kudos! You will find here some preparation guidelines and Muay Thai nutrition tips for during your stay.
But before you get carried away, here are some things you should know about staying and training Muay Thai.
Training is Hard
For those people coming from a relatively sedentary office job the exponential increase in energy expenditure will be a shock to the mind and body, which is why we are giving you some tips to prepare.
It will be unlike anything you’ve experienced before
Although attendance of all sessions is not obligatory, twice group training per day (total 3.5-4 hours), 6 times per week is an order above what 99% of folks will ever take part in. This level of training volume is only seen in the upper echelons of elite sport, so you will need to be prepared both physically and mentally. (Please note, however, that not everyone starts their training camp as a peak level of fitness. The whole point is to move you towards that.)
It will be a life changing experience
Sure, it will be tough. But your trainers are there to go at a pace suitable to your level and ability. You will leave with a newfound respect for the sport and the people that are a part of it. You will meet people from all over the world, many of whom you will stay in contact with for a long time.
Over the years we have seen countless guests arrive at our doorstep with one of a few goals in mind; to improve their Muay Thai technique, to prepare for an amateur or professional fight, or to lose weight.
Invariably it is those who come to us to lose weight who are the least prepared for what they have signed up for.
The story usually goes something this…
The guest wants to spend a month with us to reset and shift the weight that’s been accumulating over the years. This is fine, but many fall into the same traps over and over again.
They try to do too much, too quickly.
Weight loss comes down to one thing, a calorie deficit, which occurs when you expend more energy through exercise and living than you consume through food and beverages.
The problem is that when you arrive at our camp and start training the way the Thais do, your energy expenditure will skyrocket compared to your normal life.
This will be enough to elicit fat loss.
However, the common trap that people fall into is that they simultaneously try to restrict their energy intake.
This might look great on the scales initially as you will lose weight (although certainly not all fat), but if you continue in this manner, you risk the following:
- Muscle loss
- Disrupted sleep (thereby hindering recovery)
- Extreme hunger
- Night-time overeating episodes
- Extreme fatigue
Here’s are our Muay Thai nutrition tips to ensure that the above does not happen during your time with us…
- Muay Thai Nutrition Tips #1 Make sure to fuel yourself adequately. This means loading up on carbohydrates at your main meals (rice, noodles, pasta etc) and supplementing with carb-based snacks before training (banana is a good choice)
- Muay Thai Nutrition Tips #2 If weight loss is the goal, our advice is to only weigh yourself first thing in the morning. Weighing yourself after training is misleading as you will be dehydrated. By keeping the timing consistent each morning will give you an accurate representation of body weight fluctuations.
- Muay Thai Nutrition Tips #3 If you are losing more than 1-2% of your body weight per week, you are losing too quickly and will be sacrificing muscle mass as well as body fat. It is harder to gain muscle than it is to lose body fat, so do everything you can to keep hold of it.
- Muay Thai Nutrition Tips #4 Ensure adequate protein intake at each meal to help with recovery and muscle protection. Having a portion of protein such as fish, chicken, beef, pork, protein powder (soy or whey) around the size of an outstretched hand with each meal will help to protect muscle and reduce soreness. Plant-based options for protein include chickpeas, tofu, seitan, or meat replacements like Quorn.
- Muay Thai Nutrition Tips #5 Don’t skip meals in the belief it will accelerate fat loss. You run the risk of falling into too big of a calorie deficit and succumbing to the issues mentioned above.
For more Muay Thai Nutrition Tips, check this link.
If you have any questions about Thailand or if you need more information about Muay Thai training in Thailand please contact us on email@example.com. For updates on and information from Sumalee Boxing Gym please subscribe to our mailing list via the home page of the website.
After 12 years of living in Phuket, Thailand and being involved in the Muay Thai community for all of this time, Lynne Miller has written about her personal journey to and experiences of owning a Muay Thai gym in her book “Fighting for Success’. You can find out more about the book here. It is available to purchase on Amazon in paperback, ebook and audiobook.