It’s no secret that Lindsey Vonn has a regimented workout routine. She spends several hours in the gym almost every day, working out with a personal trainer.
Vonn is seeking a gold medal in the 2018 Winter Olympics. She has said that this might be the last Olympic Games she competes in and she has been laser-focused when it comes to training. Vonn is prepared to compete in the super-G, downhill, and women’s combined.
“I obviously have been waiting a very long time for these Olympics. I’ve had a lot of ups and downs since Vancouver, but I feel like I’m coming into these Olympics on a hot streak. I am skiing exceptionally well; I have a lot of confidence,” Vonn said during a press conference on Friday. “Because of the schedule and because it’s my last Olympics, it’s very important to me to attend and I’m going to get as much of the Olympic experience in these next two weeks as possible,” she added.
Vonn’s workouts leading up to her fourth Olympic appearance (she competed in 2002, 2006, and 2010, but missed the 2014 Games due to a knee injury) have been tailored to strengthening her core, which can help keep her from wiping out, according to the New York Times.
Here is what you need to know:
1. She Works Out With Fitness Trainer Alex Bunt
Vonn works out with her very own personal trainer who travels the world with her. Alex Bunt has quite an impressive resume, but has dedicated his career (at least for the time being) to keeping Vonn in the best shape possible.
“Prior to working with Red Bull and Lindsey, Alex was in charge of strength and conditioning coaching for the University of Utah Pac-12 Alpine ski, Nordic ski, and cross-country running teams while attending graduate school at the University of Utah for exercise physiology,” reads his website.
According to his LinkedIn page, Bunt attended the University of California, Santa Cruz, from 2008 through 2010 where he studied business management economics. In 2013, he enrolled at the University of Utah and obtained a masters of science degree in exercise physiology and exercise physiology.
In April 2013, he started working with the United States Women’s Alpine Ski Team. The following year, he worked as a strength and conditioning program designer at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area, all while coaching at the University of Utah.
Two years ago, Bunt joined Red Bull’s team as a High Performance Consultant, and started working with Vonn, whom he now trains exclusively.
2. She Focuses on Both Strength & Agility & She Sleeps — a Lot
Vonn is focused on her body constantly, and carves out several hours a day to hit the gym with Bunt.
“I am in the gym with her five to six days a week, year round” Bunt told Women’s Health. Three of those days week, Vonn focuses on strength training. The other two days, she focuses on agility.
“Our approach is extremely goal-oriented, goal-driven, data-driven and all based on science,” Bunt told Women’s Health. “Everything we do is purposeful, we have a plan for everything and every situation,” he added.
If Vonn doesn’t have a ton of time to spend in the gym on a particular day due to her schedule, Bunt will have her jump on a stationary bike for 30 minutes.
“It’s enough to at least keep her conditioning up, make a little change. We’ll include a couple of sprint intervals in there,” he told Women’s Health.
Something else that she is a fan of is working with resistance bands. They are almost always in her suitcase.
“Sometimes I’ll be in some remote pace in Europe, where they don’t even have televisions let alone a gym, so it’s good to keep [the bands] with me all the time, just in case I get into a bind,” Vonn told Shape a few months ago.
Vonn also makes sure that she gets a lot of sleep — and that means 10 hours per night and daily naps.
“When I can shut off completely, I feel so much better and so much more energized. When I don’t get enough sleep, I really feel like my mind doesn’t function at the same level,” she told Shape.
3. She Ices Her Knee After Every Workout
In 2013, Vonn suffered an injury that changed her life. She tore her ACL and her MCL in her right knee and had to undergo reconstructive surgery. The surgery and the rehab process took her out of the game for several months, forcing her to end her season early. The injury ultimately cost her a run for gold in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, as she re-injured her knee just weeks before.
Although Vonn’s knee is healed, she still does physical therapy. Additionally, after each one of her intense workouts, Vonn says that she has to ice her knee.
“I have to ice my right knee after every workout for 20 minutes,” she recently told the New York Times.
Concerns over her knee caused her to sit out some disciplines in PyeongChang this year. A few days ago, Vonn announced that she wouldn’t be competing in the slalom events. While she’s not taking any chances, she’s excited for what is to come — and she has worked hard to get where she is today.
“Eight years has been a very long time,” she told the Associated Press. “Obviously, I was very … disappointed and devastated and frustrated that I missed Sochi. I’ve been waiting for this for a long time. I’m ready,” she added.
4. Her Personal Chef, Dan Churchill, Helps Keep Her Diet in Check
Only part of a well-balanced life has to do with exercise, of course, but Vonn doesn’t slack off when it comes to the other part, which is her diet. Believe it or not, Vonn does have a “cheat” day here and there, but she definitely has plenty of support when it comes to clean eating, thanks to her personal chef, Dan Churchill.
When she’s training, Vonn sticks to a fairly strict diet.
“I eat foods that I like, but they’re more portioned, and the carb-to-protein-to-fat ratio is calculated in each meal. Now I’m eating like 50-50 protein-to-carbs at breakfast. Lunch is maybe 60-40, and dinner is usually no carbs. I eat a lot of fat in my diet—avocado, almond butter, olive oil, even bacon,” she told Bon Appetit.
As for those “cheat” days, Vonn says that they are absolutely necessary.
“You’ll drive yourself insane if you only eat what you’re supposed to eat every single day for the whole summer, so after a heavy workout I’ll splurge sometimes. Usually it’s on frozen yogurt, but banana bread is always a nice comfort food,” she told the outlet.
And Churchill is totally on board with this. In fact, he will prepare a dessert (his favorite? A poached pear topped with vanilla bean and turmeric-spiced yogurt) for Vonn when she’s craving something sweet.
“From a chef perspective, happiness is the biggest element of what healthy is,” Churchill told Women’s Health Magazine.
5. She Spends More Time in the Gym Than She Does on the Slopes
Vonn spends more time working out than she does with skis on her feet. Most of her training comes from inside the gym, not on outside on a mountain. The balance has shifted a bit as she has gotten older.
“That’s what we do most of the summer—the prep. I’ve skied so long that I don’t really need a ton of time on the hill anymore. It’s mostly just making sure I’m as strong as possible and making sure my knee feels good,” Vonn told Self in November.
But it isn’t always easy for Vonn, who admits that she gets tired. Her busy schedule tends to take a lot out of her and sometimes she just needs someone to help her chill out. A lot of times that person is Bunt.
“There’s been a couple days where I’m so run down that I’m almost in tears because I’m so drained, emotionally and physically. I have a really hard time stopping myself, but usually my trainer will point it out,” Vonn told Women’s Health in January.