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Wrestling Weight Management

Posted by Jeffrey Pape on


Wrestlers Need to Think About Their Diets

When I think about all the wrestling I did, a big part of it was the weight that I cut the last few years I wrestled. When I was in grade school, I did not cut any weight other than maybe watch what I ate the day or two before weighing in for the end of the year tournaments.

When I started wrestling in high school and college (late 80's/early 90's), our school actually measured our body fat in the water and with calipers. This was almost unheard of back then but is now common. So our coach knew how much weight we could lose and would make line up changes based on who could wrestle where. 

It was not until I had to cut a decent amount of weight that I got more sophisticated with my diet. This is something that I recommend all wrestlers spend some time developing their plan. Once I did, I was starting to make weight with relative ease. I allowed myself cheat days (like Saturday and Sunday), but did not go crazy. I would come in on Monday much closer to my weight than I did previously. 

I was able to eat a little bit on Friday and even drink some water too. A lot of my teammates cut weight the wrong way wearing plastics or vinyls or garbage bags to make weight. We even had guys called the "Boiler Room Buddies." There is a Boiler Room at the school and a Schwinn Airdyne bike to help the guys make weight. Those things I don't think would fly any longer at any school. 

So back to what I did, I had set meals for breakfast and lunch each day. For breakfast, I would have oatmeal most days. I would cut back part of lunch everyday until Friday. If things went correctly, I could eat and drink a little bit on Friday. For dinners, it was mostly salads or a smaller portion of whatever my family was eating that night. It's all about managing your calories. You can't beat the math. If you take in less than you burn, you are going to lose weight. 

I think everyone knows now, that you can't mess with loosing your water weight. 

For fun, I looked up how many calories it takes to burn off a "cheat food." What are a few more cheat foods we should add? And I added how many calories it is going to take to burn those foods off and how much time in jumping rope, walking or wrestling. 

You can eat just about anything and still loose weight, it depends how motivated you are to loosing that food. For example, if you want a Snickers bar and Big Mac and a Coke and a Fries, are you willing to put in the time it takes to burn those off? Granted some of the calories you will burn just naturally, but if you eat that kind of meal while cutting weight, you are going to have to do something to loose those calories. 

What are your favorite foods to eat while cutting weight? Leave a comment on our FB page. 

Common Calories:

Snickers Bar - 215 Calories - about 15 minutes jumping rope or an hour of walking or about a half hour of wrestling. 

Piece of Cheese Pizza - 300 calories - about 15 minutes of jumping rope or an hour of walking or about a half hour to 45 minutes of wrestling. 

Ice Cream - 1 cup of Vanilla - 280 calories - about 15 minutes jumping rope or hour of walking or about 45 minutes of wrestling.

Big Mac - 563 calories - about half hour jumping rope or two hours of walking or about an hour and half of wrestling.

Wendy's Fries - Large 427 calories - about half hour jumping rope or two hours walking or about an hour and half of wrestling

Coke - 12 ounce can - 140 calories - about 10 minutes jumping rope, about an hour of walking or about twenty minutes of wrestling.

Calories per Hour:

Jump Roping - 1,000 calories per hour (Source: 5 Reasons You Should Jump Rope Everyday)

Walking - 200 to 300 calories per hour (Source: 5 Reasons You Should Jump Rope Everyday)

Wrestling - 400 calories per hour (Source: Calories Burned While Wrestling)

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or a nutritionist. I just put down some thoughts based on a ten year wrestling career and a ten year coaching career. I have been recognized by the Illinois Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association as their "Man of the Year" as well an inductee into their "Hall of Fame"