Giggs reveals chocolate incentive
Ryan Giggs has revealed the personal incentives he would set for himself during his magnificent playing career with Manchester United.
One of the fittest players ever to grace the game, he would resist the temptation to eat treats, such as some extra butter on his toast or a bar of Cadbury's Dairy Milk, in order to push himself on the field.
In the latest episode of UTD Podcast, the Reds legend revealed that if he achieved his goals, he would allow himself the odd luxury and a taste of the chocolate he would crave.
Ryan was also on another bonus for hitting the back of the net, in a tradition that dated back to his early days with the Reds: the gift of £1 from a kindly steward.
This carried on, even after he broke into the senior side and started hitting the heights for United and Wales.
“I’ve got little [things]. I mean, I love chocolate. I love loads of butter on my toast, among other things. When I wasn’t playing well and I was sluggish, I just cut them out completely.
“So that’s what it was. If I was playing well and having toast with loads of butter on it, I’d just carry on. But if I felt sluggish… it wasn’t anything physical, it was more mental, sort of punishing yourself.
“‘Right, you’re not having any butter until you start playing well, mate! I have Dairy Milk in the cupboard until you score!’”
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The players' diets changed over the course of the Welshman's playing days and he adapted with the times.
“When I first came into the team, we used to eat at Old Trafford three hours before kick-off,” he added.
“We would have steak. Then it changed; it used to be chicken and beans and soup. Then for the majority of my career, it would have been pasta for a normal kick-off.
“For early kick-offs, it would have been cereals and maybe some scrambled eggs on toast.”
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In terms of Harold the steward's incentive, it was a nice touch that continued, regardless of what the left winger was achieving on the pitch.
“He started off before I was there,” explained Ryan.
“He was at Old Trafford and The Cliff and then when I was actually in the first team, he would still be there. He would give me a pound every time I scored. He started it when I was younger and then he carried it on and, by the time I’m like 19 or 20, I’m saying: 'Harold give it a rest', but no, here’s your pound. He was a brilliant character.
“He'd still be giving it to me [when I was in my 30s].”
Download the full episode of UTD Podcast with Ryan Giggs from Deezer and all the usual outlets.