Every NBA player has a different routine on the road. For Chris Mihm, it involves, primarily, working out and napping. That’s about it.
The former University of Texas center sat down with us to first answered a few of my questions about that routine, and second to discuss the extent of his gameday workout. How much should an individual player workout on game day before he’s putting too much stress on his legs, anyway?
MT: Take me through you gameday routine…
Mihm: My routine includes getting a good sweat at morning shootaround, making sure to get my shots up, so I can get my blood flowing. Then I come back and get a good lunch in me, and when I’m on the road, I always like to get a good nap in. I’ll lay down for about an hour and a half or two hours, to kill time and also refresh myself.
MT: But not any longer than that?
Mihm: Yes, any more than that and I’m too groggy, but I notice when I don’t lay down as well. Then I’ll get on the bus to the arena, go out on the court and try to get as good a warm up as I can so I can keep myself activated and warm throughout a whole game, when I know I’m going to be sitting quite a bit.
MT: I remember when Michael Jordan started lifting on gamedays, and since then hearing about or seeing more and more players really get after it before games. You?
Mihm: I’ve never liked to lift on gameday myself – I’ll save that for the day before. But some guys, it doesn’t seem to bother them. Still, lifting is very important; I’ve noticed with myself that if you don’t do it, your body breaks down faster.
MT: Plus you see me getting bigger, and you want to make sure I don’t surpass you in size?
Mihm: I have to stay bigger than you. That’s kind of what motivates me.
MT: All right. But how much working out is too much? Obviously you don’t want to expend energy you might be called upon to give in the actual game?
Mihm: There’s no exact science to it. Some nights you’re going to come out and feel great, and others you have to play through the heavy legs. I’ve been doing this a long time now, and there’s no exact routine or amount of work that I’ve found that can guarantee how you’re going to feel out there. You just have to keep a routine, and work with the coaching staff. Phil (Jackson) is really good with that, and understands the fine line between making sure he’s working guys and that we’re lively and ready to go at the same time.