Unless you’ve been living under a rock (in which case, come on out—non-rock living is pretty rad!), you know who Abby Wambach is. And if you’ve been reading us for awhile, you know how obsessed we are with the Olympics every darn time it comes around (proof here and here). So when Arnold Breads (the Official Bread Supplier of Team USA, by the way) gave us the chance to chat up this women’s soccer superstar and insanely fit chick, we screamed “goooaaalll!” To which the smart people at Arnold correctly guessed meant “yes” and gave us the interview.
Read on for our Q&A with Wambach, including her predictions of the London 2012 Olympic Games, her favorite workout tunes, her training schedule and her favorite sandwich toppings. Turns out, Abby is an avid cook and especially skilled in the kitchen, as you’ll see below!
Interview with Soccer Star Abby Wambach
- FBG: Why did you decide to work with Arnold Breads? Do you have a favorite type of bread?
- AW: I think it was a really easy partnership between me and Arnold and Oroweat breads, mostly because I feel as though nutrition is the backbone of what I do and such an impactful thing on how I perform on the field. But it doesn’t just start with a professional athlete; it applies to every single person on the planet. Having a good nutritional base, knowing what you’re putting in your body is exactly what you’re going to get out. And, unfortunately, there are tons of diets out there that talk about carbs; in my opinion, carbs are the fuel for your body. For me, 100-percent whole-wheat is my personal favorite from Arnold/Brownberry/Oroweat breads. But it doesn’t matter what kind of Arnold and Oroweat you’re putting in your system as long as it’s got those carbs as essential fuel to burn when you’re on the field or walking on the street. It’s important for every person to make sure they have that balanced diet in their system.
- FBG: What are a few of your favorite sandwich toppings? How do you keep them exciting?
- AW: That’s a good question. I think that from the time we were all very little, we’re all eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or whatever. I grew up eating bologna. I know that sounds disgusting to some people, but I really appreciate the fact that I changed things up quite a bit when I was younger and still do to this day. I like to meld certain mayonnaises and hot sauce—I kind of create a spicy mayo mixture. Sometimes I do an aioli with a garlic mixture on top. Any kind of topping you can put on your sandwich changes things and makes you feel like you’re having a completely different kind of lunch. I also love avocado; that’s also a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids and, for me, I have to get the full well-rounded nutritional plan into my system in order for me to perform at my best. It always starts for me between two great pieces of Arnold and Oroweat bread.
- FBG: We’ve all heard about Michael Phelps’ crazy eating schedule. As an Olympian you train hard and compete hard. What’s your diet like?
- AW: Well it’s not nearly as drastic as Michael Phelps’. I think he consumes about 12,000 calories, and that’s not a soccer player’s intake. We burn anywhere between 1,000 to 1,500 calories on the field; that’s not taking into account the rest of your day. We generally do have to eat more than the average person to be able to maintain our weight. For us, it’s not about losing weight; it’s always about maintenance and making sure your muscles are supplied with the kind of good nutrients and the proper nutrients. One-hundred percent whole-wheat breads like Arnold and Oroweat breads—I love those kinds because it gives the kind of fuel that puts me out onto the field in my very best form. And you know, there are those days, to be taken in moderation, where you want to indulge. You want to go down the street and grab a burger. That’s okay, but you have to always make sure those kind of moments are done in moderation. Because, otherwise, you’re going to become just another statistic and slide into the obesity range, which I think is eventually going to take over this country unless we do something about it now.