Meet Sara Sigmundsdottir, a Nike athlete from Iceland, known for her extraordinary weightlifting abilities and competing in the CrossFit Games since 2015. She talks us through a typical day and Icelandic wellness rituals she swears by…
When did you first get into weight lifting?
I started weightlifting whilst I was doing CrossFit. I competed at the 2014 Regionals and my best workout was all the lifting so the Icelandic National Team contacted me and told me to start competing in Olympic Weightlifting and I did that and I placed third in the Nordic championship so yeah I kind of fell in love with it there.
How does competing make you feel?
It’s the best feeling in the world, you feel like you are going to war, you are preparing yourself and just in the zone while you’re competing. It’s like you become a different person, it’s amazing.
Can you describe a typical day in the life?
It’s very simple! I wake up and eat a banana, then I do an hour of training followed by breakfast. I then train a little more, then study for two or three hours, on some days I coach and train again but sometimes I’ll just train.
What are some Icelandic wellness rituals that you swear by?
We all grew up having to take cod liver oil because it has so many vitamins in it because we don’t get any sun at all for 7 to 8 months of the year so it was a rule when I was younger that we couldn’t eat out breakfast until we take one tea spoon of cod liver oil.
What’s your diet like during training? Do you ever have cheat days?
I have a cheat day until Games prep but yeah of course you need to live a little too. I try to be very strict on my diet 6 days a week and then I have one cheat day, that’s an unhealthy dinner and some treats in the evening. My go to treat would be chocolate cashew nuts, that’s probably my favourite.
Favourite music to work out to?
It depends on what I am doing, if I am lifting heavy and many reps I love old gangsta rap. If I’m in a good mood and doing a lot of gymnastics then I want something that I can sing along to like old school rock like Led Zeppelin… .
When do you feel happiest?
After a brutal workout when I am going to eat, it’s the best feeling in the world. I love it so much, I take a shower and then have a treat.
What’s your ultimate goal with this sport?
My ultimate goal, of course I want to win the Games but it’s also to prove that anything is possible if you work really hard for it.
What are 3 things you wish you could tell your younger self?
Start gymnastics, eat healthy and run!
You only live once, remember that. I sometimes get stuck in wanting to just train the whole day, wanting to get better and better, then all of a sudden it’s a year and you get lost in time because you are so focused. You do only live once so you have to remind yourself where you want to be and what you want to achieve after five years.