Red Bull wakeboarder Omeir Saeed's guide to building strength and stamina

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Stay active: Saeed's guide to building up endurance

Red Bull wakeboarder Omeir Saeed finds himself working out between three-five times a week during the holy month as well as being on the water every day. For the third article of his monthly column, Saeed talks about the endurance exercises he’s doing to build strength and stamina during Ramadan.

Running

I run both in the gym and outside so I’m not just doing the same thing every day. Endurance is obviously a big part of being a wakeboarder and running is a good way of building stamina. It’s important to push yourself though as it can be easy to just jog along when really you need to be raising your heart rate. Sprints and shuttle runs are very effective workouts too.

Swimming

Every time you’re out on the water you have to swim a lot, no one comes to get you if you fall down after doing a trick. So, basically, if I’m not on the board then I’m in the water. Some days I’ll spend more time in the water swimming than I do actually wakeboarding. When you swim it works pretty much every muscle in your body so it’s perfect for keeping fit. A benefit of being a wakeboarder is you develop into a strong swimmer too.

Cycling

I go cycling for an hour or so a few times a week at a high tempo to get my heart rate up. Thankfully, it’s still not that hot outside, which is beneficial because it means I can get out on the bike, even during Ramadan, when usually the humidity is unbearable. Although I still go cycling during summer in the gym, just 10 minutes on the machine every day is enough see improvements in endurance.

Football

I play football once a week, which is a proper 11-a-side game and the good thing about that is you’re constantly on the move both sprinting and jogging. So your heart rate never really drops for 90 minutes, making it a brilliant cardio workout. You only need to play a few matches and you’ll see your overall strength and stamina get better very quickly.

Skipping

I do HIIT workouts in the gym, which really build stamina because the rest period between sets is only a few seconds, so your heart rate is racing constantly. Skipping in particular is great for improving your endurance. Plus, your coordination improves with it as well. I like doing exercises where I can see improvements in my ability. It’s important to keep the rope moving, so when you’re starting out just see how long you can go without stopping, and then increase the speed and go flat-out for as long as you can once you’ve got the rhythm.

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Daily Digest: Lionel Messi scores hat-trick in World Cup warm-up as Egypt star Mohamed Salah faces race against time

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Hey everyone, it’s Niall McCague here giving you a bitesize look at what’s going on in the world of sport.

TOP STORY 

Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick to power Argentina to a 4-0 victory in their World Cup warm-up match against Haiti – and said lifting the World Cup would be the nation’s “dream”.

The Barcelona forward fired a penalty into the back of the net to open the scoring after 17 minutes, before taking his second 12 minutes into the second half.

Messi completed the triple – and scored his 64th international goal – with a tap-in past Haiti keeper Johny Placide after 65 minutes.

FOOTBALL

Mohamed Salah faces a fight to play in any of Egypt’s World Cup group games, according to one of Liverpool’s physiotherapists.

The club physio estimated it would normally take ‘three to four weeks’ to recover from the shoulder injury he sustained in the Champions League final.

A three-week absence would keep Salah out of action until June 19 while a four-week absence would see the forward sidelined until June 26, the day after Egypt’s last group game.

Elsewhere, after signing Fabinho from Monaco, Liverpool are now trying to strike a deal for Lyon’s Nabil Fekir.

The Reds are keen to fill the void in midfield and believe Fekir would be the man for the job.

CRICKET

The hero of Chennai Super Kings’ thrilling victory in the IPL final, former Australian Test star Shane Watson, has ruled himself out of a return to international cricket.

The 36-year-old was in Dubai yesterday as he was announced as the Icon player for new T10 franchise Karachians.

Read our interview with Watson here.

In other news, banned Australian cricketers David Warner and Cameron Bancroft have signed up to play in a limited-overs tournament in Dawin in July.

The banned duo can play domestic cricket in Australia or in domestic leagues overseas.

REGIONAL

Promoted Fujairah have installed ex-Czech Republic, Al Ahli and Emirates Club boss Ivan Hasek as the permanent replacement for Argentina icon Diego Maradona on a one year-deal.

Meanwhile, Shabab Al Ahli Dubai Club have made emerging Al Dhafra midfielder Abdullah Al Naqbi their first Emirati addition since last summer’s merger.

FEATURE OF THE DAY

Read our complete guide to new Liverpool signing Fabinho.

SOCIAL MEDIA ROUND-UP

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End of an era as Billy Slater becomes latest Queensland star to hang up representative boots

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Billy Slater will retire from all representative league at the end of this Origin series.

England will no longer have to combat the mercurial talent of Billy Slater after the Australia full-back became the latest Kangaroo to announce his retirement from representative rugby league.

Slater dropped the bombshell announcement on the Queensland team at a press conference on Tuesday, revealing the 2018 State of Origin series would be his last.

Slater’s announcement overshadowed Greg Inglis’ first scheduled media appearance as Queensland captain.

The Melbourne all-time great follows the decision of Cameron Smith, Cooper Cronk and Johnathan Thurston to step down from representative football, bringing to an end a golden era for the Maroons and the Kangaroos.

Now 34, Slater said he had been toying with the prospect of retirement for 12 months and is still to commit to continuing with the Storm for 2019 and beyond.

“I just feel it’s time,” Slater said. “To be honest, I can’t give you a real answer on why exactly, but I’m 35 this year, this will be my 15th year for Queensland.

“I had a fair indication that the World Cup last year would be the last time I played for Australia, it’s been on my mind for a while, I always felt this would be my last Origin series.”

Slater’s last appearance for the Kangaroos was in December’s World Cup final victory over England. Australia’s only Test match in 2018 will be against New Zealand in October.

Maroons coach Kevin Walters admitted he was “a little bit shocked” by Slater’s decision.

“This time last year I was nearly in tears because we didn’t have him in the team and now he gets to go out on his terms,” Walters said.

“Billy Slater epitomises what Origin is all about, a kid who makes it from the bush and turns the game upside down.

“He has been phenomenal for Queensland.”

If Slater plays all three games in this Origin series, he will finish on 32 games for Queensland over a 15-year period and take him past the appearance records of Origin icons Brad Fittler and Wally Lewis.

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