David's Rugby Training Journal

I decided to start up a training journal, just for interest - maybe I can learn something from it or maybe it can help others.

I have decided to halt running track for sometime while I concentrate on the rugby season which is starting soon. This year I will be playing 2nd 5/8 (inside centre) instead of on the wing. This would be similar to a move to running back from wide receiver for you football junkies. Also, there is a big defensive requirement - I have to make big hits!

Due to the positional requirements, I will need to bulk up a little. Right now, I’m just under 80 kg, preferably I would like to increase my bodyweight to around 86 kg to be more of a presence on defense.

I also need to bring up my strength a little more, since I lost a little while stupidly cutting down for track (although I was walking around with a shredded 8-pack, my lifts weren’t going up!) Damn, should’ve taken a picture. :slight_smile:

As far as running goes, basically all of my sprint work is done at distances under 30m, plus a lot of endurance work (which is worked on in team training sessions or just playing games of 1 vs 2 soccer). I am not doing tempo at this time, since I feel all my aerobic needs are taken care of and recovery is just fine.


12x30m acceleration from various starting positions:
(side steps off either feet, rolling start, lying start, standing start, forward roll into start, etc)
Only did 10 reps eventually, since speed was starting to get worse.


Originally had planned to do cleans, but I took a hit near my neck at rugby practice a few days back and my neck was a little tight and I felt it would’ve affected my cleans form.

Back Squats: 5x5 - 150 kg - 5 min rest
Achieved five on all sets. Most sets were quarter squats since my lower back was a little tight from rugby practice and had trouble going deep.

Weighted Chinups: 5x5 - BW+30 kg - 5 min rest
Ended up with 3, 3, 2, 2, 2 reps.

Bench Press: 5x5 - 100 kg - 5 min rest
4, 3, 3, 2, 1. This was rather poor, since I used to be able to do 6 reps with 105 kg.

Abs: Weighted Swiss Ball Crunches - 10kg dumbell - 5x25 - superset with other exercise.

Saxon side bends - 3.75 kg dumbells - 5x25 - 1 min rest.

Did a few hip flexors stretches. That was it. No recovery work done.


After putting my friends through some weight workouts (they’re not training seriously), I went to the park to play some 1 vs 2 soccer (small field and small goals of course). It was a bloody tough aerobic workout! Bit more fun than tempo too. :slight_smile:
I actually ended up winning 5-3 (at one point was 4-0 to me - yay for speed!) but then they wanted to keep going until 6 pt when they realised how fatigued I was and I ended up losing 6-5.

Did some stretches. And practiced some tackling technique on my friends, just because they made me lose in the end.


As far as my diet goes now, I have been eating supramaximally. 6 meals a day, plenty of meat and eating as much as humanly possible without regurgitation. All clean foods though, about the worst thing I’m eating is probably the occasional white bread.

Onto training: originally I planned to repeat the other workout from 09/3 but my lower back and glutes were still too sore, so I just did upper body - no speed work.

Bench Press - 5x5 - 100 kg - 5 min rest
5, 4, 3, 2 , 1. A better effort this time, but still could be better.

Weighted Chinups - 5x5 BW+30kg - 5 min rest
4, 3, 2, 2, 1. Slight improvement, should be able to do 5 reps next time I do them.

No stretching, no recovery work. A bit slack you could say!


I’m up to just under 80 kg now (about 79.5 kg I guess). This is fantastic, since I was actually only just 75 kg 6 days ago! At first I was worried that I had just put on a lot of fat, but the mirror says otherwise. Not totally shredded like before of course, but certainly still remains of 8-pack visible. As long as my strength has improved also…

Team training
-Game of touch
-“Irish miles” (basically just long runs which add up to about 300m each rep)
-Various ball handling skills
-Rucks, mauls, clearing out.

No speed today

Power Cleans from the floor: 5x3 - 80 kg - 5 min rest
Felt easy (3 on all sets), first time doing cleans for a while so I didn’t want to use too much weight.

Back Squats: 5x5 - 150 kg - 5 min rest
Didn’t feel too bad, I got 5 reps on all sets but I haven’t been hitting parallel on some of the reps which is disappointing since I used to do 5 reps on 150 kg full depth.

By the time I finished squats, gym was closing so no time for abs.

Will be back on Thursday to do team training session plus probably upper body weights.


It’s been a while since your last update…any progress?


xlr8, I didn’t think there was much interest, also there has been very little to talk about from a physical training point of view!

We have been doing a lot of work as a team, almost everyday working on moves/patterns, which leaves me with very little energy to do speed/plyo/weights.

I have been doing my own individual speed/weights/plyo work once or occasionally 2xweek. I bumped the weights volume down to 2 sets of cleans, squats, bench and chins. Currently power cleaning 85kg x 6 reps, bench press 105kg x 5 reps and deep squat 145 x 6 reps. Chin-ups - I leave them at the end of the workout and as a result they’re usually dropped to save energy.

My original plan had been to add more mass but it is incredibly difficult considering the amount of running we’re doing as a team, although I am happy with where I am at and am fully capable of landing some big hits albiet at a light bodyweight!

We have our first game tomorrow, I’m starting at centre (13).

Good luck at the season opener!