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Adam Peaty: Daily Routine

On Daily Routines, we profile successful leaders, entrepreneurs, artists, executives and athletes to explore their routines, schedules, habits and day in the life.

As a young boy, Olympic gold medallist Adam Peaty was deathly afraid of the water. The fear stemmed from his older brothers telling him that sharks may come up through the plughole during bath time.

“He didn’t like the water when he was younger,” his grandmother Mavis Williams told The BBC in 2016. “He used to scream every time he got in the bath. And when his mum used to take him to the pool he used to scream there.”

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It wasn’t until Peaty went with a friend to their first swimming lesson together at the age of four that he lost his fear of water. By 14 years old, he was being coached by former Olympic swimmer Melanie Marshall after she recognised the young boy had great potential for swimming breaststroke.

“I got him swimming freestyle, it wasn’t that pretty and he was struggling in the slower lane with the ten-year olds,” Marshall recalled in an interview with The Independent. “And then he started on the breaststroke, that’s when I knew we had something really special.”

Once he discovered his love (and talent) for swimming, Peaty’s life began to revolve around the sport. In between school, homework and usual teenage life, the swimmer managed to fit in round the clock training sessions.

My mum was waking up at 4am to take me training half an hour away in Derby and then back again for school. Then I used to get the bus back from school to Uttoxeter, which was another 25 minutes – enough time for some food or sleep – be at home for 20 minutes, get a meal down me, and then back to training for another three or four hours including travel. I’d be going from 4am until 10.30pm at night.

Adam Peaty exclusive: ‘People with ADHD have a drive – I can’t sit still, I like being the best’ | The Telegraph

The hard work paid off. At the 2014 Commonwealth Games, Peaty won gold at the men’s 100 metre breaststroke and men’s 4 × 100 metre medley relay, along with Chris Walker-Hebborn, Adam Barrett and Adam Brown. At the 2016 Summer Olympics, he became the first male British swimmer in 24 years to win a gold medal for the men’s 100 metre breaststroke, then became the first British swimmer in history to retain an Olympic title when he won gold again at the 2020 Games.

Anyone looking to be the best at whatever they do has to be obsessed with self-improvement. Every day, I think, ‘This meal, workout or decision will make me faster or slower.’ I always choose faster.

Catch up with unbeatable swimmer Adam Peaty | RedBull

Adam Peaty’s training routine & diet

During his typical training routine, Peaty is working six days a week. If he’s not swimming laps in the pools, where he puts in ten two-hour sessions a week, then he’s in the gym working on increasing his strength and explosive power. The swimmer’s gym routine includes compound staples like barbell back squats, bench presses, pull ups and clap push ups, although he needs to be mindful of building too much muscle through weight training.

“Normally for my competition weight I would be looking at 92-93 kilograms. I need to be lean while still holding on to a lot of muscle,” he told Muscle & Fitness. “The more muscle you have, the bigger you will be, so there’s more drag for swimmers, so the amount of muscle I have needs to be controlled.”

To fuel his intense training sessions, Peaty can consume anywhere between 6,000 and 8,000 calories per day — more than three times the amount of an average male. He starts his day off with breakfast at 6am (usually Weetabix), and then a second breakfast at 9.30am.

Lunch is usually chicken with vegetables and rice, then for the rest of the day it’s staples like sweet potato, chicken or fish, wholemeal toast and protein shakes, which he typically drinks as a post workout meal and before bed.

While training hard and eating lots of quality calories form the foundation of Peaty’s success, over the past few years, ensuring that he gets enough rest and recovery has become a priority for the Olympic gold medallist.

“You have to be careful not to train too hard, too early, otherwise you’ll be exhausted by the time you get to the Olympic Games,” he told Muscle & Fitness. “In the last five years, recovery has become so much more important as I’ve gotten a bit older but then with age comes more power and endurance so that’s good.”

In addition to getting plenty of sleep and enough food in his body, Peaty uses ice baths to soothe his muscles, undergoes acupuncture once a week, as well as cupping therapy — a method that involves placing heated cups on your skin to reduce inflammation.

It’s important to understand that once you’re at the top you’ve got to keep that spot. I’ve been at the top now for five years, so it’s a long time to stay on top without getting beaten.

Olympic Swimmer Adam Peaty Shares His Exact Workout and Training Tips | Men’s Health

Before you go…

Check out more daily routines from Barack Obama, Arianna Huffington, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Michelle Obama, Sheryl Sandberg, Richard Branson, Warren Buffet and plenty others.

About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.