Canelo Alvarez Workout And Diet
Santos Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez is from Mexico. The youngest of 8, he grew up on a farm. Alvarez began boxing when he was 13 after seeing his older brother Rigoberto make his professional debut. In 2004, Alvarez won the silver medal at the Junior Mexican Nationals. He won the Championship the following year, and went pro at age 15. He is the youngest person to date to hold the super-welterweight title (age 20 years, 230 days). Alvarez has won multiple world championships in 4 weight classes and is the undisputed champion at super middleweight. As of January 2022, Alvarez is ranked as the world’s best active boxer, pound-for-pound. Alvarez is engaged to Miss Mexico 2003 and sports reporter, Marisol Gonzalez. He has 4 children with different mothers. Alvarez is also a boxing promoter. Canelo Promotions represents 40 Mexican boxers. Alvarez has almost a million followers on social media. He is 5 feet,9 inches tall and weighs 175 lbs.
Canelo Alvarez’s Diet
Diet is important for all serious athletes but it is especially important for boxers where making weight is essential. Alvarez is incredibly disciplined and follows a strict diet for 2 months leading up to a bout. During this time, he will have almost no carbs except from fruit and vegetables. Breakfast is egg whites, ham and oj. Lunch is chicken and vegetables. Dinner is equally self-denying, often just a zero-carb protein shake. He snacks on veggies and fruit and has a serving of bread or rice about once a week. Once the match is over, he lets himself indulge. Top picks include sushi and tacos.
- Low Carb 20% 20%
- Low Fat 20% 20%
- High Protein 70% 70%
Diet Is Key
To make weight, Alvarez must be extremely regimented. He eats very lightly, including egg whites, chicken breast, and lots of veggies to take the edge off his hunger. But, he says being hungry keeps his energy up in the ring.
For months prior to a fight, Alvarez will eat only 2 real meals a day, and even they’re pretty skimpy. Dinner is just a no-carb protein shake.
No Carb Diet
Alvarez is particularly strict when it comes to carb consumption. He only eats grains once a week while training, and it’ll be bread or rice, but not both. All the rest of his carbs come from veggies and fruit like jicama, cucumber apples and grapes.
Unleash the Beast
After a match is another story, and Alvarez lets his cravings guide him. He says sushi is often what he wants right after a match, followed by plenty of tacos the next day.
What to Eat
No-carb Protein Shakes
Bread or Rice Once/Week
What to Avoid
Alvarez on Eating Lightly
‘Feeling full can be a disadvantage. You can have the best training, but just feeling full can make you sluggish and cause you to lose.’
Alvarez on his Pre-Match Diet
‘I do 2 months of strict dieting.’
Alvarez on His Post-match Diet
‘After fight night, I go for whatever my body is craving. It’s usually sushi. But after that, I go home to Guadalajara and indulge in a lot of tacos before I have to start getting in shape for another fight.’
Canelo Alvarez’s Workout Routine
Growing up on a farm, Alvarez learned how to ride horseback, a hobby he continues to this day.
A Family Affair
All 6 of Alvarez’s brothers entered into professional boxing. The baby of the family, Alvarez had no interest in boxing until bullies and teasing about his red hair and freckles caused him to change his mind.
Alvarez went pro so young because his trainer, father and son team Chepo and Eddy Reynoso were unable to find decent opponents for him. The trio run Canelo Promotions together.
While Alvarez will pump iron, his preferred workout tool is his own bodyweight.
Alvarez works out 6 days a week, doing all the standard boxing training including speed bag, heavy bag, sparring, jumping rope, and mitt work, as well as weights and bodyweight training.
For endurance, Alvarez does sprints, and he also runs longer distances. He is up at 6 am every day except Sunday to get his miles in. He also skips rope for a high-intensity routine at the gym.
Love the Rings
Alvarez is at home in the boxing ring, and he trains with rings too, gymnastic rings. He does all kind of training with them including push-ups and pull-ups.
A Sample Canelo Alvarez Routine
Warm-up: jog for 10 min
4 sets x 45 sec x 3 rounds
Repeat sequence 3x
Regular: 90 sec
Single-leg: 30 sec/side
Stability ball work
Plank: 30 sec x 3 sets
Push-ups: 10 reps x 3 sets
Lying leg raise: 15 reps x 3 sets
Medicine ball oblique throw: 10 reps/side x 3 sets
Ring push-ups: 10 reps x 3 sets
Wide-grip pull-ups: 5 reps x 5 sets
Band-resisted step-ups: 1 min
Single-leg bench step-over: 30 sec/leg
Band-resisted high knees: 2 sets across gym. Superset with:
Band-resisted sprints: 2 sets across gym
Elevated cross-body climbers: 30 sec. Super-set with:
Elevated Spiderman climbers: 30 sec
Cable-resisted crunches: 12
Cable-resisted hollow body: 12
Cable-resisted v-ups: 12
Rotational punch press: 6-8 reps x 2 sets
Alvarez On The His Training Routine
‘If someone is going to beat me, it’s not going to be because they trained harder.’
Alvarez on Weights vs Bodyweight
‘I hadn’t lifted that much previously. A lot of reps but not much weight.’
Alvarez on Sparring
‘It’s the hardest thing I do and it’s what fascinates me the most.’
Alvarez on the Importance of Routine
‘Routine is everything to me because boxing is very much driven by routine.’
Alvarez on Why He Loves his Daily Regimen
‘My routine helps me focus, but more importantly, helps me unwind when I need to.’
Alvarez on his Approach to Bulking Up
‘I’m lifting more weights, eating more carbs, eating protein.’
Alvarez on the Sport of Boxing
‘I take on every fight with respect and seriousness. I just love boxing.’
Canelo Alvarez’s Supplements
Besides his no-carb protein, Alvarez is keeping quiet on any other supplements he may take. So below are options that can benefit anyone following a similar diet plan.
Alvarez is extremely disciplined when it comes to diet, including his protein. A lot of protein shakes are full of sugar, but Alvarez only has the no-carb kind.
Anyone interested in getting serious about boxing can consider BCAAs to boost muscle growth and retention, and to reduce recovery time.
Canelo Alvarez’s Lifestyle
Alvarez goes old-style when it comes to recovery. He says you can do a lot of fancy things like ice baths and massages, but he is mainly into getting plenty of sleep.
All 6 of Alvarez’s brothers became professional boxers, including Rigoberto, Ricardo and Ramon.
What’s in a Nickname?
‘Canelo’ means ‘cinnamon’ in Spanish and is a common nickname for red hair. Alvarez says he may have an Irish grandpa in his family history.
Paying It Forward
Alvarez donates to many needy causes, including a children’s hospital in his home town and $1 million in earthquake relief.
On the advice of his trainer, Alvarez dropped out of school just a few months after turning 15 to go pro. He had 34 pro matches under his belt before age 18.
Alvarez’s amateur record includes knockouts of 11 out of 13 opponents in 19 months. His pro record is 67 wins including 49 knockouts, 1 loss (Floyd Mayweather Jr.) and 2 draws (Gennady Golovkin& Jorge Juarez).
After testing positive for the banned substance clenbuterol and receiving a 6-month ban from boxing, Alvarez submitted a sample of his ‘canelo’ hair, which cleared him of the charge. He says he believed the positive result to be due to consuming contaminated meat.
Alvarez on Recovery
‘Just rest. There’s a lot you can do recovery-wise — massages, getting into ice baths…and all that. My best advice is a lot of rest. Sleeping is simple, but it’s so important.’
Alvarez on his Golovkin Rematch
‘I learned a lot from the first fight.’
On the Substance Abuse Claim Against Alvarez
‘Contaminated meat is a problem in Mexico. It happened with the national soccer team and it has happened with several athletes in Mexico. I believe what Canelo wants to do now is keep proving until his career is over…that he is a clean fighter.’
Alvarez on the Sport of Boxing
‘I respect all judges. Boxing is about appreciation.’
Alvarez on How to Win in Boxing
‘Boxing with technique and skill doesn’t mean that I ran…It’s not always about going forward.’