The London Games will be the sixth Olympics for Italian windsurfer Alessandra Sensini — and also the sixth Olympics for women’s windsurfing. Besides setting records and competing in all three windsurfing classes that have been in the Olympics, this 42-year-old has also pocketed medals at every game, including her gold medal win in Sydney.
Relaxnews: What does your daily training regimen look like?
Alessandra Sensini: In the weeks and months before a race, I spend many hours cycling and running, but also at the gym, at the rowing machine, for example. When it comes to windsurfing, we also change the locale. In fact we often vary the coast, the sea, and the type of the wind. I train six days a week, and I go to the water, from morning to afternoon, nine or ten times a week.
RN: What does your training diet typically look like?
AS: I don’t follow any specific diet, but my diet is varied and balanced. I could define it a typical Mediterranean diet.
RN: How do you mentally prepare for a competition like the Olympics?
AS: Since last fall, we’ve been gathering with the [Italian] national team in Cagliari. Now I’m training at the Olympic regatta course in Weymouth. After training in the morning, we have lunch and a bit of rest before going to the gym. Then we watch the video from my morning training, and we take technical notes on how to improve.
RN: Do you have a pre-event ritual, or good-luck charm, that you use?
AS: I don’t believe in bad luck, but on the eve of a match I prefer staying home to relax. I prefer cooking a light meal, such as my favorite dish, pasta with tomato and basil, which makes me feel right at home. I also listen to the Black Eyed Peas’ “Where Is the Love.” It always gives me great serenity but also a great charge.
RN: Any advice you’d give to someone starting out in windsurfing?
AS: Windsurfing is the most beautiful sport in the world. If you have the talent and passion, don’t give up ever. It makes you free.
Watch Sensini in action: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W6uCbBdUdBc