Waking up on the wrong side of the bed can be aggravating for most — but for an Olympian, doing so is potentially detrimental. That’s why so many athletes have morning routines that they stick to in order to get their days started right. And while they’re competing and training at elite levels, many of their rituals aren’t all that unique. For example, regardless of sport — from cross-country skiers to hockey players — coffee serves as a classic pick-me-up. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t some routines that are out of the ordinary. For biathlete Clare Egan, looking out the window first thing helps her put things into perspective. Read on below for what 11 Olympians do in the a.m. to get going. You might learn a thing or two.
Mornings are actually kind of hard for me, so the first thing I do is have coffee. Every day. That’s like the first thing I do. I stumble out of bed and go right for the coffee. But then I have a really big breakfast, usually like oatmeal with berries and nuts and yogurt and whatever I have — I just throw it in there. And that’s what I eat before a race or before training so I’m starting off on the right foot. And, yeah, the caffeine wakes me up.
Coffee, I love to make coffee in the morning. Depending on if I have to get up earlier, I grind beans the night before because I’m picky about beans I use. I prefer to grind fresh in morning. I like to get up early and take my time getting ready before I go to the rink in the morning.
[My sister and I] have been living together in Florida, and I get up 15 minutes before she does, so the coffee is ready for her when she finally rolls out of bed. Once I finish breakfast, I make sure she’s awake. I usually tell her to get up.
One of the first things I do every day to keep my confidence high is I kind of just make sure I’m feeling and looking my best. You don’t always feel good, but for some reason when I start doing my grooming and daily routine, it helps me to feel better when I wake and attack these days. Getting in there and making sure I’m nice and moisturized and hydrated, maybe throw on a little concealer to brighten up under my eyes and kind of feel like I can take on the world.
Put on the right outfit. I’m definitely someone who, when I wear the clothes that make me feel good, it just gets the day started on the right foot. So I really handpicked my training clothes to find stuff that not only functions well for me, but just makes me feel fast and fit. So I love just kind of — I’m a morning person, so I bounce up in the morning and I put those clothes on, and I’m ready to go out and train and attack my goals for the day.
Jessica Smith Kooreman
First thing is getting up and getting motivated. Getting somewhat of a good meal in before my first training for the day, whether it be a shake or eggs or oatmeal. I just prepare myself and get the energy to sustain during training.
I open the curtains and look out the window wherever I am and get some light. I think that’s a good way to start the new day, just recognizing, hey, it’s a new day. That’s pretty cool when you think about it.
The first thing I do is probably start with a cup of coffee [laughter] and breakfast. If I have the choice to make it, I have toast with eggs and avocado on it. That kind of fills me, and it’s healthy and gives me enough energy to get done what I need to.
I definitely wake up, eat breakfast; it’s got to be a solid breakfast. I have a cup of coffee and relax. I don’t like to rush in the morning and get out door, whether it’s to train or practice. I like to eat, sit on the couch, and not be rushed, I guess. I think that helps. I don’t like feeling flustered rushing to get where I need to.
I’m a planner, I have a planner that I write in and write my schedule down. I like to see the day, cross things off — things I need to do and have prepared to do.
I usually drink tea in the morning. It depends what I’m doing. If I’m jumping in morning, I go for an easy run or do a morning yoga flow to warm up before breakfast. That’s important to me. I like to get up early and get fresh air before the day starts.
I get a lot of my stuff all ready the night before. There’s not too much of a scramble that way; I’m always buffering for time. I’m definitely a morning person. In the winter it’s a little challenging to get up early because it’s darker. Once I’m up it doesn’t take me a long time. I have trouble staying awake past 8 p.m.
I go straight to the coffee maker and make myself a nice cup of coffee.
Additional reporting by Laureen Irat, Kerry Justich, Dana Oliver, Rachel Bender, Alexandra Mondalek, Beth Greenfield, Elise Solé, and Abby Haglage.
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