HOUSTON – It would be tough to blame Geoff Cameron if he wanted a break.
After helping the Houston Dynamo make a sprint to MLS Cup 2011, Cameron got just five weeks of rest to heal his injured right leg before heading to US national team camp for a month. But after logging his first two international starts against Venezuela and Panama in January, the 6-foot-3 defender is back in Dynamo camp and ready to keep the momentum going.
To overcome the short rest, he’s looking to take some of the training tips on nutrition and mental preparation he picked up while in US camp and use them to keep his body fit for a 2012 campaign that includes MLS, US Open Cup and CONCACAF Champions League play.
“Before I always would eat well and take care of my body, but this was to an extreme,” he told MLSsoccer.com after training on Thursday. “It was separating yourself and doing some little things like taking certain vitamins and things like that; that can help your body for things like having a faster recovery and feeling better over long periods of time.
“It makes you a better player,” he added, “and helps separate you from everybody else.”
And that’s crucial to the Dynamo, who will rely on the international center back to help anchor a back line that returns intact and should be one of the strengths of the team.
With his ability to track down runners and play balls out of the back, skills that made him shine in a US kit last month, Cameron knows he has the chance to make an even bigger impact for the Dynamo. Even if his body is telling him that he missed out on an offseason, he’s looking to bring some of what he picked up on the field back to Houston and the routine he learned off it.
“We worked on keeping the ball and learned to give deeper support and encourage our guys to step up and put more pressure in certain areas,” Cameron said. “We’ve done that here but you learn with [the national team] that you have to do it as a team or it throws everything off. If you work as a team and breakdown situations … it’s another thing to take advantage of with the Dynamo.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com.