Ben LeSage hails from Calgary, Alberta. The 24 year old has played for Canada since 2016, appearing in one match of World Cup 2019. Signed for the 2020 season with the Toronto Arrows, LeSage looks forward to applying his trade as a powerful and fast centre in the MLR. Fearless on the pitch, fitness is key for this UBC Thunderbird graduate. LeSage shared us his unique viewpoint with us around training and maintaining the rugby player lifestyle: 

What is your favourite exercise to do during your workout?

BLS: My favourite exercise would be the dumbbell bench press.

How often do you weight train vs. train cardio?

BLS: Weight training happens 3 times per week. Most cardio training is done in actual practice sessions so it would be about 5 times per week.

How often do you eat throughout the day? What foods make up your daily diet?

BLS: I eat 3 meals a day plus a post practice snack. Breakfast is usually a peanut butter blueberry smoothie with some eggs and toast. Lunch lately has been some sort of steamed vegetables, rice, and chicken or turkey balls. Dinner is usually either a big pasta or chicken, sweet potato, and some asparagus or green beans. For a snack I like to grab either a bowl of cereal or rice cakes with peanut butter and banana on them.

How long do you warm up before you start training?

BLS: Warm up is probably about 20 minutes; 10 minutes of rolling/activation and then 10 minutes warming up and getting the heart rate going.

How important is goal-setting in reaching your fitness goals?

BLS: I’ve mostly used fitness goals as a baseline to achieving my on-field goals. However, working towards beating my personal bests or meeting certain standards when showing up to the gym everyday helps keep me motivated.

What sort of supplements do you take?

BLS: I take BCAAs before and protein after most workouts. I’ve been on and off creatine before but didn’t notice much of an effect.

What is your favourite cheat day meal?

BLS: There’s lots of good options out there, but I’ve got to say it’s hard to go wrong with a burger, fries, and a milkshake.

How do you recover after tough training days?

BLS: I love a good ice bath despite how uncomfortable it may be when first getting in.

How important is staying hydrated to your fitness?

BLS: Staying hydrated is huge when training so frequently. I find drinking supplements before and after training helps me get into a routine of getting enough water in the system.

How important is mental fitness compared to physical fitness?

BLS: Mental fitness is a huge component to performance and being switched on for each training. I know for myself it’s important to switch off when away from training because focusing 24/7 can end up turning into a mental drain. 

Rugby has taken you all over the world, but which place have you yet to visit that you’ve always wanted to?

BLS: I would probably say Italy. My Mom’s side of the family is Italian so I would love to see it, but unfortunately have never made it there.

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