Being able to run for 90 minutes isn’t all about physical fitness. It’s also about being clever. It’s no good running around like a Jack Russell dog; it’s about knowing when to hold and when to go! It’s about getting the most out of you with doing the least work possible!
There are times in the game when things are not going so well or you’ve run so much that you’re waiting for the final whistle to blow. So, after you’ve made a sprint for the ball, take the opportunity to have a breather and mentally prepare for the next passage of play. Then there are times in a game where you can find yourself in a little space just by standing still.
Having excellent fitness levels is vitally important. You’ve got to make sure you work hard during the week so that you’re fully prepared for the game at the weekend.
Recovery is key. You want to push yourself in training during the week, but ease off the closer you get to the game so that your body is ready. Recharging your batteries can make you feel energized on a match day and helps reduce the risk of injury. Knowing you’ve done everything right during the week – training and resting – makes you feel confident.
When you’re fitter than the opposition and you can see their players are feeling tired, keep going! It’s demoralizing for them and gives you a boost. Lasting 60, 70, 80 & 90 minutes and beyond can be the difference between winning and losing. Games are often won near the end of the game or in added time.
You can score in any second and concede a goal in any second and when you’re tired, you switch off. You have to be focused from start to finish.