Agnieszka Radwanska is at the top of her game, currently ranked 3rd in the world and nicknamed ‘The Professor’ by her fellow players, but if you think she’s all gluten-free chia bowls and aloe vera water, you’re wrong. We chatted to the most relatable tennis player around to talk about her Wimbledon training routine, and the takeaway she can’t resist.
How often do you train a day?
It all depends on my schedule. When I’m home or before a tournament, I practice more. But it’s around three hours of tennis and one and a half hours of fitness.
What do you do?
It depends, but if I have an off season or time between matches, I do more weights. Closer to the match, it’s more cardio and keeping in shape, so I work on my whole body; stomach, legs, back, everything. When I’m playing on grass, I focus on my glutes and back.
How about when you’re playing on clay?
I was doing a lot of exercise with sliders and working on my abdominals to prepare for a more slippery court.
How do you recover from a workout?
Always an ice bath! Especially when it’s so hot, like in Miami. In the locker room we have ice baths every single match, or every single practice. I have a lot of massages, especially as you get older.
Do you actually enjoy exercising?
A lot of exercise I don’t actually like doing but I know I have to. After years of doing it, you get used to it so I’m not like ‘oh my god’. It’s for your own good and your own health. I have to work a lot on my shoulder because I had surgery on it, so sometimes I hate playing against a wall to help that, but I know I have to.
What do you do to motivate yourself?
Playing and winning matches, the satisfaction of succeeding in something you work for all your life. Staying healthy is the most important thing, because you can’t do anything in professional sport without that.
Are you an early riser?
At home, I like to get up later. I don’t do anything before 10am – I can get up, that’s no problem, but I don’t think your body is ready for exercise at that time. But it all depends on my schedule.
Were you always sporty growing up?
Yeah, I started playing [tennis] when I was 5, and when you play one sport you try others too; I did soccer, rollerblading, swimming and skiing, but then I stopped skiing because we know how many crazy people are out there on the mountains… I would like to ski again, when I’ve finished playing tennis.
Do you watch what you eat?
I don’t really have a strict diet. I burn so many calories and sometimes I don’t even eat enough. Maybe because of my genes, I’ve never had problems with weight so I don’t really have to watch what I eat, but I love to try different things.
What do you normally have for breakfast?
When I’m not playing, matches, I like to eat I think the usual stuff, so scrambled eggs, toast, yogurt and fruit. But I mix it up, I’m not the kind of person who likes to have the same thing each morning - I think that’s too boring.
And for dinner?
At Wimbledon, I normally eat near the site and there’s not much around, so most of the time we order Asian fusion takeaway.
In terms of make-up on court, are you quite low-key?
When it’s very hot, I wear a moisturiser with sunscreen in, but other than that I’m always wearing mascara. My favourite is Chanel’s waterproof mascara – I can’t remember a day when I didn’t have mascara on.
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