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Sheffield Vulcans Recommend: Pre-Training Meals

As Sheffield’s first LGBTQ inclusive Rugby team we pride ourselves on being a squad made up of athletes who come from a wide range of ability, fitness and experience. Always looking for ways to improve our performance our team of coaches heartily encourage our members to maintain a healthy work/life balance.

However, in today’s new world forged by Covid-19, it is often difficult to keep on the straight and narrow when it comes to nutrition. Sure, lockdown rules have been relaxed and we can do as much exercise as we want out doors but it also means that temptation of grabbing something quick and easy is even more present now the golden arches have opened their drive through and delivery services.

We’re not worried too much though because tonight marks the restart of our training sessions. That’s right, keeping in-line with the recommended government guidelines our team has been split into squads of six who will work together to complete HIIT sessions developed to help improve our fitness during pre-season ready for when the season begins (whenever that may be).

With training starting again the team have been thinking about how we each treat our bodies. We’ve already been encouraging one another to remain active during lockdown thanks to our weekly Strava challenge but it’s just as important to take note of our nutrition as well. Good nutrition is vital for exercise and performance and can help recover faster after each workout. It’s equally as important to think about the timing of your pre-workout meal too. That’s why it comes highly recommended to try and eat a complete meal containing carbs, protein and fat at least 2 hours before you exercise as this will help prevent any stomach discomfort during exercise.

Ahead of tonight’s training we turned to our committee to see what their go to pre-training meal and here is are a few of their recommendations:

If your training starts within 3 hours:

Our club President Michael Hudson recommends something quick and easy to prepare. That’s why he swears by enjoying a meal of chicken and rice/pasta a few hours before training. Protein, carbs… simple!

As an alternative suggestion, our very own Matt Clark recommends fajitas made with lean protein, brown rice and roasted vegetables.

If your training starts within 2 hours:

Our Social Secretary Tibble Smith knows how to keep it light and recommends enjoying some toast with butter (and jam if he’s feeling a little naughty).

As an alternative suggestion, you could enjoy a bowl of whole-grain cereal and milk.

If training starts within an hour:

Our club Chair Glenn Allen and our very own Jude Berry recommend enjoying a piece of fruit, such as a banana or an apple.

As an alternative suggestion you could enjoy a nutrition bar with protein and wholesome ingredients.

That concludes our recommendations for pre-training fuel and we hope you found it useful. Remember at the end of the day improving your pre-training nutrition can go a long way in helping you perform better and recover faster as an athlete. But before you go, remember that your body also needs water to function so it is important that you maintain good hydration habits as well.

Thanks for reading.

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How We’re Maintaining Fitness During Lockdown

Since the lockdown began the Sheffield Vulcans have had plenty of downtime since the dreaded Covid-19 pandemic sunk its nails deep into the flesh of this planet. Not only were our Tuesday night training sessions suspended indefinitely, but the government only allowed us to leave our homes once a day initially, restricting the amount of exercise we could do outside of our homes.

Thankfully, this didn’t stop the Vulcans from working on our fitness. Every Tuesday for the past nine weeks we’ve been taking part in remote HIIT sessions delivered by the fantastic Analise Moran from Moran Personal Training. Taking to our bedrooms, kitchens, living rooms and gardens, we’ve been squatting, planking, and becoming sweaty messes with the goal of maintaining our fitness.

In addition to this our very own Liam Goodwin came up with a solution to keep the team engaged between HIIT sessions by using Strava, a popular fitness tracking app. Liam noticed that a few of the team were already on there tracking workouts during lockdown in an effort to remain active and sane. Other rugby and sports clubs had set themselves up on Strava and we thought it was a great idea, so got Sheffield Vulcans set-up and encouraged the team to get involved in weekly distance challenges.

The first week had a positive response with roughly half of the club signing up to take on 100km, which we had exceeded by Wednesday. As a result the target was doubled, and by the end of the week the team flew past the revised target with an incredible distance of 287km. This was mirrored by the results of the second week which saw the Vulcans smash the 300km target with 433km in total.

During this time Liam saw a growth in interest amongst the team thanks in part to the weekly leader board and results, adding friendly competition into the mix. Some eager beavers have been getting out multiple times a day with an eye on the top three spots, whilst others are happy doing their own thing pushing themselves individually. Being an inclusive team consisting of people of all ages and ability, we ensured the challenge allowed members to walk, run or cycle any distance they felt comfortable with. Furthermore, the challenge has provided the perfect opportunity for some of our Vulcans to spend time with one another (within government guidelines of course).

Recently, we’ve celebrated our third weekly result and managed to complete a collective distance of 602.31km, which is the equivalent of running from Plymouth to Middlesbrough. Each week the target grows, and we’ve now added an extra mini-challenge for all members to complete a minimum 10km distance across the week.

On reflection, we can’t thank Liam and Analise enough keeping us Vulcans engaged and motivated to keep our fitness up. The benefits of taking on these challenges have helped us to work together, motivate one another, and ultimately bring us closer together as a team even though we’re physically far apart. We know one day the lockdown will end and we will all return to Sheffield Tigers to continue our training ready for next season. Until then, the team will continue to support one another and smash our weekly targets.

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Captain’s Log – The importance of self care during lockdown

Captain, Innes MacLeod has a message to share about the importance of self care and why lockdown isn’t stopping him from looking forward.

During the lockdown it is important to think about being kind to yourself. That can mean different things to different people. Whether it’s indulging your sweet tooth, getting an extra hour’s sleep or simply grabbing 5 minutes of quiet time in a busy household. Over the past few weeks I have been increasingly thinking about how the way I treat myself, physically and mentally, has been restricted and the efforts I can make to find space and time for this.

We are being bombarded with the truism that the current restrictions are damaging for our mental and physical health. This is something I have been feeling keenly recently. Under normal circumstances I would spend an evening or two a week with my fellow Vulcans. As you might expect of any IGR club the Vulcans provide a fantastic community feeling which I am sorely missing. In addition, the routine and physical exertion of training has been hugely beneficial to my mental health and being apart from this has had its impact.

As a club we have tried to be innovative and have introduced zoom training sessions. For an hour a week we get together and squat, jump and stretch from our respective bedrooms, living rooms and gardens. While for some this might sound less than fun the return of routine, the ability to see my friends and the physical benefits have helped enormously with the challenge of lockdown. The benefit of regular exercise on mental health is by no means a silver bullet but is well accepted and I find it a useful tool for keeping my spirits up through this time.

Weekly high intensity exercise may sound like the opposite of being kind to yourself to some and as someone who always preferred the pie and chips after playing rugby than the game itself I can sympathise. Finding something that is accessible, enjoyable and fits in with your day to day can be hard. Even making time for a short walk every day has been hugely beneficial for me. With the streets and parks being relatively quiet I find this not only good exercise but a good time to clear my head of the busyness of work and the often gloomy daily news. An important aspect of mindfulness is bringing yourself into the present moment and being more aware of your body and surroundings. A quiet walk is often a great opportunity to do this. I’ve started noticing new buildings and great views of the city from the streets around my flat. These moments give me time to reflect and leave me feeling more positive and able to take on the day.

This is what works for me but it is important to find what works for you whether it’s yoga, chairobics, running or following the lead of my partner and buying an inflatable kayak to take up the local canal. Making time to be kind to your body and mind can help you through the lockdown.

Want to learn more about the Sheffield Vulcans’ plans for the 2019/2020 season? Get in touch today by emailing committee@sheffieldvulcans.com

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Turns Out, Rugby Is The Sport For Me – Voice of a New Player

“I’ve Never Played Rugby Before. Sports Just Aren’t For Me.” That’s what Matt Buckingham thought before he joined Sheffield Vulcans. Read more about Matt’s first few weeks of being part of Sheffield’s inclusive Rugby club and how it’s changed his mind about team sports and given him new confidence and opportunities.

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Captain’s Log – What To Expect from Sheffield Vulcans in 19/20

Captain, Innes MacLeod gives an insight into what he wants the club to achieve in our upcoming season.

As the Vulcans second birthday approaches so does the anniversary of my first trip to Endcliffe Park for a training session with the club. If you went back in time and told me that in a year I would be heading into the next season as captain I would have been, to say the least, surprised. It’s been an amazing year with training sessions that built confidence, socials that brought new friends and games that reminded everyone involved why we love this game. So the feeling I have looking forward is not surprise but excitement for what promises to be this young clubs best season yet.

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Sheffield Vulcans 2019 Welcome Week!

Join the Sheffield Vulcans for our our first ‘Give Rugby a Try’ Welcome Week of 2019. Everyone is invited to come and get involved with Sheffield’s only Inclusive Rugby team for 3 taster sessions and a social.

Inclusive rugby means that whether you are gay/straight, big/small, young/old, an experienced rugby player or never picked up a ball, we want to see you get involved and join the Sheffield Vulcans.

Jan Welcome Week

Tuesday 22nd January – The Sheffield Vulcans will be at our regular home of Endcliffe Park at 7pm for our weekly training session. We provide all the equipment, we just ask you to wear something sporty (boots optional) and show enthusiasm as we go back to the basics of Rugby and welcome all the new members into the wonderful egg-shaped sport.

Thursday 24th January – We’ll be meeting at 7pm again at Endcliffe Park for another training session. Don’t worry, we’d never make you do something that we wouldn’t want to do, but we’ve got activities planned for everyone regardless of how much experience you have.

Friday 25th January – Join in as the Sheffield Vulcans take over the City Centre and visit our nightlife sponsors. We’ll have fun and get to know all our new friends joining the team with Karaoke, drinks and answering any questions you have.

Sunday 27th January – We’ll wrap up the week with a bright and early training session at Endcliffe Park on Sunday at 11am. We’ll be able to use more space, natural light, and show even more people how fun rugby can be, and how it can help with fitness, skill and confidence.

For more information, find us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@sheffvulcans), ask us on Facebook, or email committee@sheffieldvulcans.com

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Sheffield Vulcans – Give Rugby a ‘Try’ – Autumn Welcome Week

Join the Sheffield Vulcans for our second ‘Give Rugby a Try’ Welcome Week of 2018! Come and get involved with Sheffield’s only Inclusive Rugby team for 3 taster sessions and a social.

Inclusive Rugby means that whether you are gay/straight, big/small, young/old, an experienced rugby player or never picked up a ball, we want to see you get involved and join the Sheffield Vulcans.

Tuesday 30th October – The Vulcans will be at Endcliffe Park at 7pm for our usual weekly training session. Wear something sporty (boots optional) and join in as we go back to the basics of Rugby and welcome our new members. It’s the day before Halloween but don’t be scared, Rugby is fun!

Thursday 1st November – Meeting at 7pm again at Endcliffe Park, join the Vulcans as we lead another taster session. Don’t worry we won’t make you do what we wouldn’t want to! First of the month is a perfect time for your first Vulcans session.

Saturday 3rd November – We’ll be making use of some natural light with a training session at 11am at our usual home of Endcliffe Park then heading to a local pub to watch the England VS South Africa match at 3pm before a night out in Sheffield City Centre at some of our wonderful nightlife sponsors.

You don’t have to be available for ALL the activities, but if you’re free we’d love to see you at at least one!

For more information, follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@sheffvulcans), ask us on Facebook, or email committee@sheffieldvulcans.com