Our Interview with Annie Thorisdottir:
The Return of the World’s CrossFit Queen
*Athletes are not directly affiliated with Europa Sports.
Europa Sports had the exclusive opportunity to interview the world-renowned CrossFit Champ, NutriForce Sport Athlete, Box Owner, and Coach to the Coaches, Annie Thorisdottir.
The CrossFit Games began in 2007. Since then, Thorisdottir has been the only female to win back-to-back CrossFit Games in 2011 and 2012. As a two-time defending champion, she was well on her way to establishing an incredible legacy, until an unfortunate back injury prevented her from competing in the 2013 Games.
Prior to becoming the CrossFit queen, Thorisdottir was an experienced gymnast, ballet dancer, and pole-vaulter. As someone who trains six days a week (four hours per day), she values proper nutrition and understands the importance of supplementing the body to function at its very best.
Read on to learn about the eating, training, and supplementing regiment that led to Thorisdottir becoming crowned the fittest woman in the entire world—twice. And how she plans to do it all over again.
Q: You have started your own CrossFit Box, Reebok CrossFit Reykjavik. How are you involved and what tips do you have for box owners?
A: I am one of three co-owners for the box. My biggest role is coaching the coaches. Then I have my hands on whatever comes up or needs to be done for the box to become the best it can be. I think the most important thing is to have good coaches that are all on the same page. The key is to make sure that everyone, no matter what level or background, feels welcome and safe.
Q: How much time on average do you dedicate to mobility, strength, skill work, metcons, warm up, etc.?
A: 20% Mobility 30% Skill 30% Strength 20% Metcon
Q: What do you think are important program considerations for men vs. women?
A: The difference in programming should be based on strength, not gender.
Q: How do you properly taper and peak for an event like the Games?
A: There is no formula to peak at a certain time. You need to find out what works for you, so experience is the most important thing. Obviously you should not go hard right before you need to peak, but you need to make sure your body is ready to deliver. My coach takes care of that.
Q: Since you are recovering from a back injury, what’s your current training and supplement routine?
A: I spend more time on mobility, making sure there is no unwanted movement in my back and hips. Since I can’t load my back yet, the strength training is more isolated than what I’m used to. As for supplements, I take NutriWhey protein after every session. I really like the Natural Aminos from NutriForce Sports. When you are recovering from an injury, you need to provide your body with all the right building blocks to restore what has been broken down. Supplements are important as well as a balanced diet.
Q: How do you plan on preparing for the 2014 CrossFit Games? What will you do differently?
A: My preparations for the 2014 Games is in the build-up phase. I need to protect my back: plenty of stability work, mobility and quality movements, rather than heavy loading. As soon as my back is ready for action again, I will return to a strength cycle and build my body back up.
Q: Do you adhere to a particular diet regimen?
A: No. There is no right answer here. The recommendations from experts change every year, and I think this is just proof that it’s a very individual thing. You need to find a way that works for you. People who go on “diets” are usually not the people who manage to make permanent changes. I try to eat clean, as little processed food as possible and plenty of greens.
Q: If the sport of CrossFit is something that demands strength, endurance, and skill—how do you balance your training to increase strength and endurance?
A: It’s not an easy thing to balance, but the essence of CrossFit is to mix different modalities, and loading to prepare the body for whatever we might throw at it.
Q: Do you limit the amount of “kipping” you perform to prevent injury?
A: If kipping is done correctly, it will not cause injury. When people get hurt doing excessive kipping, we see a loss of midline stability and increased movement around the lower back, rather than movement of the hip to generate force.
Q: How do you handle the mental aspect of having an injury and watching other people train, etc.?
A: This is the hardest part about being injured. I love training. And I love training hard. So being sidelined for this long—and being a spectator at the Games—has been the hardest thing I have ever endured. All this just makes me want it even more for 2014.
Here at Europa Sports, we’re confident that Thorisdottir will return even stronger. She is training hard. She is eating healthy, and she is supplementing to ensure her body has everything it needs to regain its peak performance. You don’t become the world’s fittest woman on earth by settling for anything less than your personal best. We predict it won’t be long before she is aptly named the Comeback Queen of CrossFit.
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