As the bow of the boat of the Women’s Eight crossed the finish line in Rio, Shaklee Pure Performance Team member Amanda Elmore felt that one last surge of adrenaline that ultimately comes with winning a gold medal. Part of a victory that marked a winning streak of ten years in elite competition for the Women’s Eight, Amanda was in the “stroke seat” as the one who sets the pace for the other rowers as they power through the 2,000-meter race.
“Being on the Rowing team in Rio was the best experience of my life, even before we won the gold. I got to row with hard-working women who just want to go fast and get faster. The commitment and trust among the whole group was inspiring and infectious.”—Amanda Elmore
Amanda’s run to the gold was fairly rapid, having begun as a freshman at Purdue University in 2009. She joined the team in 2014 and quickly established herself as one of the smartest and most powerful rowers in a group world-renowned for excellence.
We caught up with Amanda to talk about her future, health, and motivation:
Q: What does the future hold for you, and what’s your motivation?
A: The pull of competition and hopes for victory are pretty powerful, so after a year in grad school at the University of Michigan (Amanda is pursuing her Master’s Degree in Biomedical Sciences), I’ve decided to get back in the boat to make the team in 2020 and compete in Tokyo. Of course, we want to keep the streak alive and win another gold medal, but my teammates are one of my primary motivations—the camaraderie, the opportunity to learn from them every day, and the ability to help new teammates. I’ve gained a lot of experience, so it’s important to me to bring that all back to the team.
Q: You’re preparing for the rowing World Championships in September. What’s your workout schedule now?
A: 22 of us are at the Princeton rowing center working together to make the team. This is an intense period preparing for the World Championships. We start our first rowing workout at 6:30 a.m., so I’m up an hour prior to that for a big breakfast and to get my body moving. After the morning workout, I have a second breakfast. Next, we work out with weights. Our third workout session is rowing in the evening. Between workouts, I eat healthy meals that include a good amount of protein, every three hours. So that’s three practices a day, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. On Tuesday and Thursday, we have two workouts a day and then Sunday off. Of course, that practice schedule makes it easy to keep a consistent workout routine, which is the key to improvement and success.
Q: Obviously, fitness is critical in your sport. What are your thoughts on health?
A: As I mentioned, it’s all about consistency. For basic or advanced fitness and health, we need to ensure that we’re eating well every day and keeping a consistent exercise routine. We don’t have to be perfect, but if we stick to our routine, eat well, sleep well, and are smart about taking care of our body, then it will become a natural, intrinsic process to stay healthy. That will eliminate the need to “catch up” from the bad health habits that make us feel terrible physically and mentally.
Q: A large part of rowing is about leverage and technique, which involves bone and joint health, right?
A: You might think the rowing action alone would be enough to keep our bones and joints healthy, but there’s more. We want to improve our mobility and strength exercises outside of rowing, so we do Pilates as a team, and weights are another important part of our routine. Of course, diet is critical and it’s really important to get good nutrients, so I supplement with Vita-D3®, OmegaGuard®, and B-Complex. I also love the Shaklee 180® Snack Bars and Meal-in-a-Bars for a quick protein recovery snack after practice. And every day after our first rowing workout, I have a Life Energizing Shake™. I like to mix the Café Latte and Chocolate flavors with peanut butter. We’re burning a lot of calories, so we stay well fueled…and don’t forget lots of fruits and veggies!
Q: Any encouragement for big dreamers?
A: I talked about how important it is to stay consistent in our health quest. The same concept applies to any endeavor. If you have goals in life, just as with fitness, stay consistent in your pursuit of those goals. Don’t try to make huge jumps in progress. Your big goals for the future require you to stick with it—try your hardest every day and be consistent. Of course, we all have setbacks, even with consistent work. When that happens, just say to yourself, “This is my new starting point”—then get back to it. After a year away from rowing, I’m not where I was in my skills or fitness. So I realize this is my new starting point, and I must build from here. I don’t get frustrated if I’m not moving fast, and I know the “baby steps” will grow and get me to my goal. We can all achieve great things—good consistency can make us great!
A special thank you to Amanda Elmore, 2016 Rio Games Gold Medal and Member of the Shaklee Pure Performance Team. Amanda’s favorite Shaklee products include Life Energizing Shake, Vita-D3, OmegaGuard, and B-Complex.