A return to play + 20% off the range...for life!

With the football season set to resume very shortly the players will be stepping things up a notch or two getting ready for return to play.

To be fair, the ones I help look after have all been ticking along doing as much as they can from home, in parks and in individual sessions. Now they are back in the mix – getting ‘fight ready’ or competition ready is the name of the game.

This involves getting used to contact but also stepping up in terms of fitness. It’s easy to coast through sessions on your own – you still make progress but there’s no ‘redline’ training. See the simple ‘wave’ training protocol below for ‘redline’ training. This is where you take your opponent to a place they don’t want to stay at intensity wise, then when they tire you strike!

Here’s a few things normal folk can embark on now, for many we’ll be back out there shortly. For some this will bring some apprehension, are we going back too fast? Have I had Covid? Am I immune? If not, how can I protect myself best.

Much of this we’ve covered before, and it’s the same protocols I follow for long-haul travel (a higher risk activity at the moment). Recap on this below.

Take home messages;

  • Get ready for return to work
  • Max out final phase fitness and fat loss (get back into your work clothes)
  • The new normal, requires some planning, walking, cycling to work
  • Circadian rhythm is vital if you are out of synch then re-hack your way back in
  • See if you're a night owl or morning sparrow then adjust your nutrition accordingly
  • Lowered risk and increasing immune function tips below

Getting ready for increased stress resilience;

  • Train hard
  • Sleep well
  • Look after your immunity
  • Laugh, play
  • Express yourself
  • Do something which gives you a sense of purpose
  • Love hard but don’t be a pushover
  • Take aminos (of course)!



For others it’s a case of shifting times and getting back into a daily rhythm. Lots of people have had more time, so more time to train – more time to eat, sleep etc.

So, reeling in bedtimes and getting used to earlier starts will be key. You can start this now – or just hit things cold turkey. But a bit of preparation never hurt anyone and you are here cause we are always trying to help you optimise your health and performance.

Start by getting to bed 20-25 minutes earlier until you are back at your normal bedtime. Set your alarm the same time, a bit earlier not too much. 15-20 minutes is fine. Then you can ease into a new wake up time over 6-8 days.

Re-establishing your morning routines will be key. Avoiding the tube where possible is going to be a good idea. I did this before Covid cause I just don’t like crowds and also there’s the immune side of things to consider too. Walking into meetings (4 miles to Soho) takes an extra 10-15 minutes over getting the tube. Obviously the longer the commute the less easy it is to walk. So, then you can either cycle or getting the train / driving is the other option.

Whatever you do protect your mucous membranes with barrier defence, nasal sprays and intermittent use of zinc losengers when travelling and exposed to multiple people.

Many of you may have gained some weight. No surprises as being at home, taking less steps, eating more meals and snacks all adds up to the calorie balance shifting into storage of excess energy mode.

Here at Amino Man HQ – we’ve been doing some monster sessions, combined with the support and interaction In my Strength for Life ™ group things are going well – only trouble is with less walking the calories plus weights I’ve gained too much muscle to get into my work shirts.

Nice problem to have but trimming the muscle down with some extended running sessions is the name of the game now over the next 3-4 weeks.

Now with work looming there won’t be the luxury of longer sessions, time restricted training and eating will pave the way to retaining fitness and trimming down into suit and smart clothes for work.

One great example of time restricted and efficient training is of course HIIT. You can also try ‘wave training’ it’s an easy form of high intensity lactate aerobics.

Circadian Code

A great read and plenty of information on how the body regulates systems according to the time of the day and the 24-hour daily cycle. This kind of information has been around for a long time, now as with many things we’ve got more science beef to the bone to support older information and advice.

Circadian code my take home summary;

  • Practice time restricted feeding
  • Follow sleep hygiene
  • Train hard
  • Look after your liver and detox
  • Time your food for maximum energy for training and deepest sleep


One interesting set of sleep disorders relating to insomnia is as follows;

My early research pointed towards these items being out of sync;

If you’ve ever had a touch of insomnia, you’ll know sleeping is more complex than just jumping into bed.

Fortunately, your body is geared towards shut-eye, which makes it dead easy to improve the quality and duration of your slumber.

You can even pinpoint what the problem is by keeping track of the times you wake up:

Between 12-1am – Waking up after being asleep for around 1 or 2 hours is often related to blood glucose (energy) levels dropping rapidly.

This is often cause alcohol or excess sugary and high GI carbs have been consumed in the evening.

2-3am If you wake up shortly after that then it’s likely you have a detoxification problems, usually linked with your liver.

You might have a fatty liver or you’ve been drinking too much alcohol.

3-5am And if you’re fumbling for the remote at around 3-5am then you’re probably stressed out, which is linked to adrenal problems.

100% of my clients with low cortisol have this problem as cortisol allows steady blood glucose, lack of cortisol means adrenalin needs to kick in to raise blood glucose. You wake up with a rapid heart rate and it takes a while to get back to sleep – then you wake up knackered.

So, if you tackle the source of these problems rather than the symptoms, you’ll very quickly start making friends with the big Z again.


Just sayin'