If you’re not a boxing fan, you might not know the name Chris Algieri. But you should soon. Algieri, an undefeated champion fighter and Long Island native, has never fought outside of the United States. He’s never fought outside of New York, for that matter, and never swapped punches with an athlete who transcends his sport.
But here he is. Algieri has a date on November 22 in Macau, China against future Hall of Famer Manny Pacquiao. And Algieri might be the only one who thinks it’s not a big deal.
“It’s only a big deal if you make it a big deal,” he said recently during a phone interview from his private kitchen at this training headquarters in Las Vegas. “I don’t care where it is. … Is Manny going to be there? Is there gonna be a ring? What does it matter?”
Does he want to prove people wrong?
“I don’t care about proving people wrong."
Shut up the critics?
“No. I don’t care. What they say doesn’t matter to me.”
If you ask Algieri, he’s simply preparing for another fight, another fighter. Nothing has changed. Well, except for the cameras that make their way into every workout session and the obligations that have grown so overwhelming that he now has staff to manage it all. His training and nutrition – those things are the same.
So is the fact that Algieri steps into the ring as the biggest of underdogs. The same as he was when he catapulted himself into boxing’s consciousness by outscoring Ruslan Provodnikov for a piece of the 140-pound title with a right eye so swollen it belonged in a Rocky movie.
It’s a long way from where Algieri started. The 30-year-old grew up in Huntington, Long Island, earned a degree in health sciences from Stony Brook University and a master’s degree in clinical nutrition from New York Institute of Technology. Algieri, who started his fighting career in kickboxing, still works as a certified nutritionist and until his upset win against Provodnikov, he was still taking on clients.
Algieri contends that his training diet mirrors his regular routine. He simply eats more. And that doesn’t mean he cuts out all the things he likes either. “I put butter on my toast,” he said. “I love butter. Everyone’s surprised by that.”
Also surprising: “I eat white rice. Does that make me a bad person? No.”
Find Chris Algieri's typical daily meal plan on the following page>>>
Chris Algieri's Typical Daily Meal Plan
I wake up in the morning and I make myself a super huge smoothie. I usually do a base of broccoli and spinach. I use almond milk, coconut water, on a sparring day I’ll use beet juice, organic beet juice. I use whey protein, a couple different supplements in there: creatine, gluten, beta-alanine, sometimes I put almonds in there just to mix it up. Depending on what kind of fruit we have, if I have any kind of sore muscles I’ll had pineapples or papaya. Strawberries, blueberries are staples in a morning smoothie.
After Morning Workout
I eat eggs almost every day. I love eating eggs. I’ll do sunny-side up eggs. Right now I’ll do an omelette with Ezekiel toast, lots of fresh fruit. I love butter. I put butter on everything. I put butter on my toast. Everybody’s surprised by that. For me, I don’t want to get rid of butter. It’s a saturated fat and you need that as well.
Afternoon (following boxing session)
Finish that up with a protein shake. I use a supplement called Vitargo, it’s the fastest digesting carb on the market. Put sugar and glytrogen back in your muscles immediately. I take that with my protein or my creatine. That’s immediately after my workout. An hour later I’ll eat again. Usually some piece of protein, a chicken breast or a chicken thigh and then a sweet potato – light and low in fat. And then it’s dinner time.
I love to cook. Dinner is my favorite meal of the day and I love to mix it up and get kind of fancy and kind of different.
I do the same thing I tell my clients. I take my plate and cut it in half. A quarter of that is going to be your meat entrée and a quarter of that is going to be your starch. I’ll double up on my veggies. I’ll either have a side of broccoli or a side of asparagus and then I’ll have a green salad with that and then I’ll throw in a sweet potato or brown rice and then I’ll have my entrée, like last night was a tuna steak. Tomorrow it’ll probably be another fish like salmon. Another day it might be a hamburger. That’s another thing I won’t give up during camp is hamburgers.