Making Haye shine

Heavyweight boxing champ David Haye has enlisted a track and field athlete to help him with nutrition and conditioning

Posted on June 30, 2011 by
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David Haye and Ruben Tabares

Ruben Tabares is a well-known athlete on the domestic scene. The 32year-old was an English Schools 400m hurdles champion in the late Nineties and 52.5 performer at the distance as a junior. But now he is applying the knowledge he has gained from athletics to help the world heavyweight boxing champion David Haye.

Tabares and Haye were boyhood friends and the athlete is now the brains behind the boxer’s diet and fitness regimen. As Haye says of Tabares: “He makes the engine purr under the bonnet.”

Haye, the WBA heavyweight champion, needs to be in top shape too, as he has a big world title unification fight against Wladimir Klitschko, the holder of the WBO and IBF versions, this Saturday night.

Tabares has championed the benefit of natural whole foods over synthetic sports supplements to help achieve optimum results. As an athlete, he splits his time between training and working with Haye and he believes that too many are ignoring the unique benefits of ‘natural fuel’.

“The body is not designed to deal with man-made nutrition and ultimately, many synthetic supplements are inferior copies of what can be found from natural sources,” explains Tabares. “There is no arguing that supplementation can really help athletes, but not necessarily every single supplement available on the market.”

In an ideal world, diet alone would provide all the vitamins and minerals that the body needs for good health and to support physical activity. But evidence from the National Diet and Nutrition Survey shows that a significant proportion of the UK population don’t achieve nutritional sufficiency through diet alone. Recent independent advice released by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) supports that some food supplements can boost athletic performance, particularly those containing protein, iron and vitamin D.

Tabares continues: “Both David Haye and I have incorporated nutrientrich whole foods into our diets and have really noticed the benefits in performance as well as recovery. Among other foods we both take a single-celled algae called Sun Chlorella ‘A’. It has a powerful ‘dual-action’ effect – an instant energy boost prior to physical activity as well as a repair and anti-inflammatory benefit after training.”

This natural approach to nutrition is a refreshing take on how food can enhance performance. Haye is also known for ensuring he eats only organic fruit and vegetables based on the premise that the food is allowed to fully ripen before it’s picked, allowing for maximum absorption of nutrients.

Tabares believes that whole foods are also central to athletes getting the best out of their training as they are free from synthetic ingredients which allow the body to fully maximise the health benefits. Sun Chlorella ‘A’ for example is composed of 60 per cent pure plant protein and contains a variety of nutrients including the daily intake of essential amino acids plus vitamin A, vitamin B12, B6, vitamin D, folic acid, iron and fibre.

Sports nutrition is an area of many theories, but all are ultimately focused on improving the body composition, aiding recovery after training and competition, and also increasing energy and performance. Tabares says: “Nutrition is one of three fundamental factors of equal importance for an athlete to be successful alongside the right training and rest.”

A healthy and tailored diet plan remains a key factor to boosting athletic performance, and alongside our influencers such as physical training and mental preparation, can often mean the difference between success and failure in sporting competition.

Athletics know-how

Athleticism is at the core of all physical sports. The basic elements of athletics are running, jumping and throwing – and these actions, together with traits such as speed, strength and endurance, are vital in football, rugby, cricket, tennis, in fact pretty much every ‘active’ sport, game or pastime.

Experts who have advised nonathlete sportspeople include:
Frank Dick: The former national athletics coach was once fitness adviser to Wimbledon tennis champion Boris Becker.
Daley Thompson: The Olympic decathlon champion was fitness coach for football clubs such as Wimbledon FC.
Margot Wells: The coach and wife of 1980 Olympic 100m gold medallist Allan has advised rugby and football players, plus swimmers, skiers, fencers and bobsleigh teams.
Ade Mafe: The 1984 Olympic 200m finalist turned into a successful football fitness coach after he hung up his spikes, notably advising Chelsea FC.
Darren Campbell: The former European 100m champion has given pace and acceleration advice to Manchester United, Chelsea and other clubs.

» Ruben Tabares, athlete and conditioning coach to David Haye, takes nutrientrich whole food Sun Chlorella ‘A’ for achieving optimum physical performance. See

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