Players build muscle during offseason conditioning

Players build muscle during offseason conditioning

Athletes at Eastern work hard to keep themselves physically fit during the offseason by lifting weights, doing cardiovascular work and building a nutrition plan.

Freshman basketball guard Tyler Harvey tries to take 400 shots a day in the gym, which usually takes him an hour and a half. He admitted that he sometimes skips out on some of his shooting practice during the offseason if he has too much homework to do.

Harvey lifts weights both with his team and individually. When he is with the team, their trainer helps them focus on one muscle set per day.

The team generally lifts weights four times a week for an hour and a half.

When this is not enough for Harvey, he will also incorporate cardiovascular work into his workout routine. He estimated that he usually does a cardiovascular workout twice a week and that this most often includes jumping rope or running stairs.

According to Harvey, his current workout schedule is much different from his normal routine.

“In season, you’re always tired and practice is already hard. Offseason is where you really try to build up for practice,” he said.

With this much working out, Harvey makes sure to keep a balanced diet. He said his favorite healthy meal includes whole wheat pasta with beef.

“I try to eat whole wheats and fruits,” he said. “I try to eat healthy for the most part, but somedays I feel like eating a burger.”

The women’s basketball team spends a similar amount of time in the gym, according to sophomore forward Melissa Williams.

She said their gym process is very long and a lot harder because they are currently not in season.

“Weights will take an hour and a half just because you want to be completely warmed up before you lift,” she said. “It’s great, but sometimes we get kind of bored. But when you’re with your team, you have a lot more fun with it.”

Williams said the process will begin with a weigh-in to make sure the team is healthy. Then the team will stretch together and go through corrective exercises.

“We go through these corrective exercises to either help with mobility or different areas that [we’re] weak in. Some people are really tight, and they can’t do certain movements and some of us aren’t as strong in our core,” she said.

The next step is to do warm-up exercises to make sure everyone is ready for lifting.

Williams said these warm-up routines are never the same, but they always include circuits that are fast and repetitive.

“Then we’ll go to the platform and do big lifts. We’ll do probably three big lifts, and that takes up most of your time because you’ll do your set and then rest,” she said. “Our trainer is big on resting and then going as hard as you can when you’re actually doing the exercises.”

After the lifting, the team does core exercises together, which Williams admitted she was not particularly fond of.

“It sucks. Our abs are on fire afterward,” she said. “We’ve been finishing with core a lot. I guess we’re going to have abs this year.”

Like Harvey, Williams also tries to take a couple of days out of the week to dedicate to cardiovascular workouts.

She said she likes to go for a run outside because basketball often leaves her stuck indoors.

Williams is making sure to take extra care of her body right now because she is coming back from a few injuries.

“I’m trying to get back to being completely healthy,” she said.