Donncha O’Callaghan Details His Extreme Diet Change After Moving To The Premiership

Eat up.

Former Munster and Ireland lock Donncha O’Callaghan has offered up a fascinating insight on the differences in playing in the PRO14 and the Premiership, especially for a front-five player in the pack.

O’Callaghan said when he first arrived in England with Worcester, his coaches wanted him to put on up to a stone in weight. Speaking on Off The Ball on Newstalk, the 38-year-old  former Ireland international disclosed how he had to change his preparations.

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“Playing front five in the Premiership, it’s all about scrum weight so they would be delighted with you if you downed a tin of roses or whatever it is the day before a match. Not for me, I’m too vain for that,” he said.

“My weight with Munster was 113-114kg and body fat in around 10pc but when I went over they told me they wanted me in around 118-120kg and body fat can easily go up to 14-15pc.

“It’s all about weight in the end, they’re not too bothered by it. Be it fat, be it muscle have it on you. I don’t agree with that, I don’t think it’s right, it’s not for me.

“I like being lean. I think it keeps me on the top of the ground. I’ll just never forget Paul Darbyshire our fitness adviser and he was like, ‘you just can’t carry a bad pound’ and I totally agree with that.”

O’Callaghan says theses days he’s not as strict, weighing in at around 116kg, consuming over 6,000 calories the day after a match, and 3,500 on a working day.

“I’m in around 116kg and I’m a bit looser with my nutrition than I’d like to be. (My body fat) last time was about 11pc,” he added.

“On a working day (I’m consuming) 3,500 calories, the day after a match it’s 6,000 which is a massive amount. I’d like to get it from food, I think it’s the best way of it but that amount you just can’t do it. You have to take supplements, you have to take shakes.

“It’s not my preferred option. There was a time when I wasn’t really eating food, I had gone through everything but food’s best. Your body just feels right. I notice a massive difference.

“Over-use of supplements is not for me.”