5 ways for the equestrian athlete to stay healthy at home

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5 ways for the equestrian athlete to stay healthy at home

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    03-31-2011, 11:41 AM
5 ways for the equestrian athlete to stay healthy at home

Hi there

I am new to this forum, I hope what I have written is of use to you.

My name is Matt. I am equestrian athlete fitness coach from the UK. I am currently trying to raise awareness within the sporting world for the need to improve the information available to equestrian athletes.

I have put together a little article for you all. I hope this will be useful for you.


With the Equestrian Athlete being very much time constrained, being able maximise their time at home is crucial. Long gone is the need to travel vast distances to a gym. With time being crucial , now has never been a better time to start treating your body right! Here are 5 of the lifestyle habits that I have found to be very effective with my Equestrian Athlete’s, helping them to achieve the best they can, and ultimately achieve their riding specific fitness goals.

1. Eating cruciferous vegetables- These contain lots of phytochemicals that help to metabolise the oestrogen that is responsible for a lot of the body fat we carry. Vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, brussel sprouts and curly kale are superb at helping to reduce excess body fat. This has a massive impact on the way you carry yourself on the horse and will dramatically affect your energy levels.

2. Short bursts of activity- By exercising for too long you may be actually making yourself fatter. It’s known that more than two slow steady continuous exercise sessions of over 30 minutes per week, can lead to elevated cortisol levels. Cortisol is a fat storage hormone that is released when we get stressed. If you are serious about being really efficient with your exercise, try exercising 4 times per day for 4 minutes at a time. These sessions will keep your testosterone levels high and your metabolism revved up!!I recommend that my Equestrian Athlete’s actually drink Tulsi Tea, which comes from holy basil and is highly effective at elevating the metabolism and acts as an anti oxidant.

3. Get to bed before 10pm. By going to sleep by 10pm, you increase your body’s ability to recover and repair. By going to sleep at 12am, you have cut your physical repair time in half! Sleep is crucial to maintaining focus throughout the day and on the horse!

4. Organise your 8:30-5:30!! This might sound like a short day to most of you, but once you start planning you will find that you will get so much more done. Admittedly this is far later than all equestrians get up, but at least you have 8 hours rigorously organised. I insist that my equestrian athletes plan their days as much as possible. Now we all have things crop up, but if you have a plan, it makes things so much easier. Try to concentrate on one thing, and doing it well, then move to the next task. This will free up time to spend with the family and time for doing the things you want to.

5. Reduce sugar, caffeine, alcohol and processed foods. These are all essentially robbing the body of what’s good for it, and increasing the stress on your liver to do its already mammoth job! Nutritional stress is a big problem for many equestrian athlete’s and I find that when I look at their diet they tend to be find sleep an issue.

I would love to know what you think. Thanks for taking the time to read.


Matt Luxton
Equestrian Athlete Performance Coach
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    03-31-2011, 12:44 PM
Thanks matt for this interesting article .

Originally Posted by TheEquestrianAthleteCoach    

2. Short bursts of activity- By exercising for too long you may be actually making yourself fatter.
thats so true =| if I read this article a year ago I won't believe it , but because all this year i've been exhausting my self with exercising everyday and I actually gained a pound or so ..
    03-31-2011, 12:56 PM
Thank you, that was very interesting! Admittedly, I have not heard of #2. Seems interesting to me, but I'll take your word for it.
    03-31-2011, 01:09 PM
Oh, I have one. NEVER, EVER go through menopause.

That, more than anything, has flarked up my body. Even with regular exercise and eating right, I'm still a fatty Patty.
    03-31-2011, 01:28 PM
2) is very true. I also have to add the problem with too much gym is that you build lots of muscle mass (plus use lots of calories to support the body). So if for any reason you can't exercise as much you are getting bigger (fat ) pretty fast. I've seen it happening several times. With that being said no exercise is bad too.
    03-31-2011, 01:34 PM
I think I fail at all of those.
    03-31-2011, 03:34 PM
Good thread! Here's a question as far as the nutritional side of things. I have suffered from what was thought to be IBS for years and recently found a fabulous Dr that told me I have Celiac disease (gluten allergy). I spend on average 10 hours a day in the barn. Any suggestions on quick snacks I can eat during my working hours? I was a granola freak, but with the new diet restrictions that is out.
    03-31-2011, 03:58 PM
^MH, what about some nuts and dried fruit? I'm a huge fan of almonds and some dried cranberries, anything to get you some protein, in my opinion, can really help you stay feeling satisfied. You could also couple that with some raw veggies that were mentioned above and have a nice little snack!

I agree with all of these, Matt, thank you for sharing! I don't know if I can give up my morning coffee though, lol.
    03-31-2011, 04:11 PM
Thanks Strange :) I've been eating lots of raw veggies! Nuts & dried fruit is a great idea, the rabbit food just isn't doing it for my energy levels. I haven't bought too much pre-packaged stuff because I am not fluent in reading the labels yet. Dr. Even warned me about chapstick & lip glosses, lotions, makeup, toothpaste, errr it's frustrating but at the same time I am really excited to know what it's like to live with a normally functioning digestive system :)

I think the horses may get a day off tomorrow so I can drive 90 miles to the nearest Whole Foods.
    03-31-2011, 04:47 PM
You can find some nice premixed stuff at the store, and under the ingredients list of most foods it will list the possible allergens in them, usually in bold. It may say something like "This product contains x, y, z" or "This product is processed in the same place as a, b, c and may contain traces of them."

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