If you want to maximize the performance of a powerful car, there are certain steps you need to adhere to in order to make it run properly. You need to take it out for a spin so it doesn’t sit in the garage too long, apply lubricants and engine oil, and fill up the tank with top- quality fuel so it runs cleanly. The same goes for a top caliber athlete. The demands of a long PBA season can weigh heavily, even for a well- conditioned pro. Diet, recovery, and discipline are keys to success, so we spoke to three players from the Fuel Masters’ squad, Matthew Wright, Jason Perkins, and JC Intal to get a glimpse at what they do to stay at their best.
Q: What’s your typical game day routine?
Matthew Wright: Hydrate, drink a lot of water before the games. I try to eat as healthy as possible, but that’s hard sometimes in Manila. I just stay away from fast food and get as many carbs and vegetables as possible.
Jason Perkins: First thing I do when I wake up is call my mom so I can hear her voice. I meditate for about 30 minutes, then get some fish and some vegetables like peas. I’ve been a pescatarian for a while; hopefully, I’ll be a vegetarian soon. After that, I play some video games, mostly NBA 2k, then maybe watch some shows on Netflix.
JC Intal: For me, it’s all about sleep. I make sure I get at least 7-8 hours. I like to eat heavy in the morning—oatmeal, bacon, and eggs. We practice three hours a day so I need to make sure I have enough energy.
Q: How do you manage to stay motivated and fit throughout the season?
Matthew Wright: It’s 80% mental. But, you know, at the end of the day, it’s basketball and it’s fun for me. I’m getting paid to play basketball, so between the Fuel Masters and the National team, I can’t complain.
Jason Perkins: Motivation-wise, I just try to be myself, because I want to be one of the best in the league, so that motivates me a lot. To stay in shape, I’m doing tremendous. I used to be 250 lbs, but now I’m below 220. Just keep on the diet, and the trainers are always here to help us stay conditioned.
JC Intal: I believe in the saying, you are what you eat. After 12 years of playing professionally, I have a good routine and try to stick to that. It takes a lot of sacrifice, it’s not easy with McDonald’s everywhere!
Q: How would you recommend that an average Filipino maintain a healthy
JC Intal: It’s really all about sleep, food, and exercise. You don’t necessarily have to eat perfectly everyday or exercise every day, but trying to stay disciplined and maintaining a consistent routine is key.