Dara Torres is more than your average Olympic athlete: she has set three World records, holds 13 National titles and owns nine Olympic medals, four of which are gold. Torres is the first U.S. swimmer to compete in four Olympic games and now, at 41 and a mother of a 2-year-old, she’s concentrating on a fifth—in Beijing.
Q: Describe your typical day of training.
A: I spend two hours in the pool, five days a week, and I weight train four days a week—two days of lower-body and core and the other two days upper-body and core. I also do resistive stretching three days a week.
Q: How many calories would you say you consume in a day?
A: I have no idea. I had an eating disorder in college so I don’t count calories.
Q: Favorite power breakfast?
A: Berry-flavored Living Fuel shakes with some milk and fruit are the best!
Q: What’s changed—in terms of physical activity and eating—with age?
A: The biggest change is recovery. I don’t recover as quickly as I used to, so now I try to eat more foods—lean protein in particular—that help me recover quicker.
Q: Favorite dinner or recipe?
A: A mixed green salad, turkey-spinach lasagna, garlic bread and green beans. My favorite cookbook is one I got in college—Where’s Mom Now That I Need Her?
Q: Best piece of nutrition advice you’ve ever gotten?
A: It’s OK to have bites of food that probably aren’t the best for you because that way you won’t deprive yourself and then want more of that food.
Q: Do you have an eating mantra you try to live by?
A: I eat what I want, when I want, but I exercise so I can do that.