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Ronaldo at 39: Unique Health Habits

Cristiano Ronaldo

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Cristiano Ronaldo has spent over 20 years playing professional football at the highest level, winning numerous honors and scoring hundreds of goals.

At 39, he continues to prioritize his football and fitness, playing for Al Nassr in Saudi Arabia and representing his home country, Portugal.

Ronaldo's longevity in the sport can be attributed to his strict workout routine and several unique health practices.


From focusing on high-protein foods to maintaining a strict sleep schedule and employing unique health techniques, Ronaldo is known for his unconventional methods of staying in top shape.

Mirror Sport has detailed some of the elite athlete's most common health practices – and some may surprise you.

Ronaldo's 'Magical' Chicken

Ronaldo switches his meal routine from the usual three meals a day to six smaller meals throughout his waking hours.

Instead of breakfast, lunch, and dinner, he opts for breakfast, brunch, lunch, a snack, supper, and then dinner.

Research is ongoing into the benefits of multiple small meals compared to three regular ones, but Ronaldo's meal prep choice is not unusual among athletes.


Ronaldo's preferred protein is chicken, which he once dubbed "magical" for its health properties.

He also includes avocado, fish, quinoa, and fresh fruit in his diet throughout the day.


His Portuguese teammates have revealed that his favorite meal is Bacalhau a Bras – a dish made of salted cod, fried potatoes, and scrambled eggs.

Ronaldo is also an advocate for hydration and avoids sugary drinks for his health.

This was evident during Euro 2020 when he removed Coca-Cola bottles from his press conference table and urged people to "Drink water" in Portuguese.


Painting His Toenails Black

Ronaldo paints his toenails black, not for fashion, but for health reasons.

Fans noticed his black-painted toenails in a social media post, sparking curiosity.

The practice helps fight off fungi and bacteria from growing on nails, a tactic also used by many MMA fighters.


According to German news outlet Bild, athletes use black nail polish on their toes to cover them with a protective layer, preventing fungi and bacteria.

This layer also helps prevent nail breakage during activities like kicking in football or fighting in MMA.


90-Minute Nap Schedule

Ronaldo follows a sleep routine of 7-and-a-half hours, broken into 90-minute nap sessions instead of one long sleep.

This technique, known as polyphasic sleep, breaks the normal sleep cycle into multiple nap sessions. It is similar to how babies sleep throughout the day and night.

Potential benefits of this technique include increased alertness, productivity, and better retention of new information.

Some studies suggest that a 90-minute nap during the day can improve reaction times.


However, some scientists argue that polyphasic sleep does not offer proven benefits over a normal sleep schedule.

Ronaldo adopted this technique during his time at Real Madrid, thanks to sport sleep expert Nick Littlehales.


Ronaldo has emphasized the importance of proper sleep for optimal training and muscle recovery.

£50,000 Cryotherapy Chamber

Upon returning to Manchester United in 2021, Ronaldo installed a £50,000 cryotherapy chamber in his home.

Cryotherapy chambers use liquid nitrogen to freeze the air inside to around -200C (-328F). This therapy is popular among athletes like Erling Haaland and Usain Bolt.

Cryotherapy is believed to reduce swelling from injuries and inflammation while boosting blood circulation due to the extreme temperature shift.

While many scientists support the benefits of cryotherapy, people are advised not to spend more than five minutes at a time in the chamber to avoid harming healthy tissue.

Some experts argue that there is no objective evidence proving its effectiveness, but cryotherapy could act as a positive placebo, making athletes feel better and recover faster.

Working Out for Up to Four Hours Daily

In addition to training with his club or country, Ronaldo has a personal workout plan that can last up to four hours a day.

He enjoys swimming, Pilates, and gym sessions, with five days of workouts and two days of rest each week.

His gym routines include up to 30 minutes of cardio, high-intensity sprinting, and targeted weight exercises to increase muscle strength.

In total, Ronaldo works out for up to four hours daily, in addition to training with Al Nassr or Portugal.


Source: mirror

The opinions shared in the GymNation blog articles are solely those of the respective authors and may not represent the perspectives of GymNation or any member of the GymNation team.