James Milner: Prepare like a professional

There’s plenty you can do before putting your boots on, as Liverpool’s explosive midfielder, James Milner explains

“It takes me ages to get going in training sessions as well as in games. What can I do to prepare myself better?”   
Dom Gates, via email

More after the break

James Milner says:

“It’s definitely worth developing a routine as it can help you prepare both mentally and physically.

My morning routine depends on what time I have to get up. Manchester City are the only club I’ve been at where the time of the training session changes every day.

It can be 10.30am, 12pm or 1.30pm – it really does vary every day. Every other club I’ve been at, the training sessions have nearly always been 10.30 starts.

If it’s a 10.30am start I will normally get up around 8am and have breakfast. I never have much of an appetite in the morning but I know I need to eat so I force myself.

I will usually have some cereal, fruit, yoghurt and maybe some toast. I like sultana bran with a banana but I’m not a big fan of breakfast.

I’ll then have a shower or sometimes I’ll even take the dog for a walk because it’s nice to get some fresh air in the lungs and get your legs going.

I will usually get to the training ground an hour and a half before the session starts so I can get a massage or do a gym session. Getting to the ground early enough for a warm-up is essential.”

For more football tips see:
Wayne Rooney: Big match preparation
Clint Dempsey: Mental preparation
James Milner: Getting the best out of training
Theo Walcott: Big match preparation
Pele: Big match preparation
Meditate like Messi

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