Born in Freehold Borough, New Jersey, Rebecca Soni (Reb), grew up on the balance beam and bars. Gymnastics, Reb's sport of choice, took a back seat when she joined her older sister's (Rita) swimming club because it was a better than having to wait for her sister to finish class. So at age 10, Rebecca dived with no idea she would make a splash in the Olympic world.
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2008 was Rebecca's year. She won the Gold Medal and set a World Record in the 200m breaststroke at the Beijing Olympic Games, defeating the Australian favorite, Leisel Jones. She also brought home two Silver Medals in the 100m breaststroke and the 4x100m medley relay.
Ending collegiate career by USC in 2009, she swept both breaststroke events and broke another record. The 6-time NCAA Champion continued to win multiple events and set more records.
As Rebecca trains towards the 2012 London Olympic Games, she sets her eyes on the Gold in the 100m, 200m breaststroke and the Medley Relay.
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From nutrition and training, to family and friends, Rebecca set aside time to share her story and what it's like to be an Olympian.
No, it always seemed out of reach and I never thought I'd make it this far. I wasn't the best when I started, but I kept at it and eventually I improved.
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I love the training and coming out of a good workout feeling accomplished.
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I was so ecstatic I couldn't even believe it, I felt like I was on top of the world in my sport.
Being able to commit to swimming is my first priority. I usually swim at least two hours a day and incorporate cross-training workouts into my routine a few times a week. Being consistent and keeping a regimented schedule is necessary for me to stay focused.
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I wake up at 5:30 a.m. every day to walk my dog, Kody, and sit down for breakfast. I go off to the pool around 7:00 a.m. for a two-hour swim session, and eat a second breakfast before I hit the weight room. I also do Pilates, RockITbody, and Yogaworks a few times a week for cross training. After a day of training, I'll cook dinner with my family and friends, and relax at night.
Nutrition is extremely important to me and is crucial for my training. I always eat a good breakfast, usually Kellogg's Raisin Bran? or Kellogg's Special K? cereals. Eating breakfast gives me a great start to the day and gives me the potential I need to perform at my best. Throughout the day, I stick to a healthy diet making sure to incorporate lots of fruits and vegetables into meals.
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I spend time with my coach discussing the proper nutrition for my training, and I have to be very regimented about it on my own as well. I do my own grocery shopping and keep a very detailed list of everything I need for the week to make sure I'm getting all the proper fuel.
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It's been a fun road to the Olympics so far, I've been working with great sponsors like Kellogg's and have been getting to travel to so many different places and meet great people, especially the fans. I hope everyone will be cheering for Team USA during the Games.
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