Olympic cyclist Anna Meares talks Rio, fitness & chocolate

She is arguably Australia’s greatest female cyclist and now Anna Meares is intent on cementing her status in the upcoming Rio 2016 Olympics. We caught up with the reigning Olympic champion and Cadbury ambassador to talk about the upcoming games, her fitness regime, healthy indulgences as well as what keeps her motivated.

Anna Meares, Cycling AustraliaQ: How did you get into cycling?

“I grew up in the country and the only way to get to school was walk or cycle – cycling was obviously faster! Then watching Kathy Watt compete in the early 90’s sparked my interest in track cycling. 21 years later, here I am.”

Q: What do you love most about competing in the Olympics?”

Wearing the green and gold. I love being a part of the team and representing Australia in the national uniform.”

Q: What will be unique about the Rio Olympics?

“Rio is renown for their colourful, welcoming culture so I’m very excited to see what they have in store.”

Q: What is your current health and fitness regime like? Has this regime changed in the lead up to the Olympics?

“It hasn’t change that much in the lead up. I’m a strength and power based athlete so I focus primarily on gym sessions.”

Anna Meares diet, YoghurtQ: Being an athlete must involve quite a bit of travelling, what tips do you have for maintaining your health and wellbeing?

“Take regular, short naps and stay active. I avoid wearing sunglasses and spend as much time as possible outside to adjust to the different time zones.”

Q: How do you motivate yourself if you’re ever feeling flat and uninspired?

“I remind myself of how much I have achieved so far. I also look to people, pictures, quotes and movies for inspiration to bring the best out of myself.”

Q: Can you talk us through a typical day on your plate?

“For breakfast I normally have Weet-bix with peaches, pears, strawberries, coconut milk and water. I’ll then have a cup of tea and yoghurt. Lunch is a salad wrap with chicken and maybe a side of brown rice. Then for dinner I like to eat a good portion of red meat for protein with veggies and potatoes.”

Anna MearesQ: Do you have any indulgences?

“Of course – chocolate! I especially love the Cadbury Marvellous Creations range. While, my health and nutrition is extremely important to me, I believe there is room for occasional splurges.”

Q: What do you like to do to unwind in your down time?

“I find gardening extremely relaxing. I like to keep my mind occupied and try not to think about competing so cross-stitching, drawing and movies also help me relax.”

Q: What do you hope to be doing when you eventually retire?

“I would like to stay involved in the cycling and sporting community. I have interests in radio and commentary as well as motivational speaking.”