Name: Dr. Robyn Odegaard
Involved in: Biking, volleyball, ballroom dancing, lifting weights and various other cardio including inline skating
Trying her hand at everything
I have always been active. I started walking early and never stopped. I was raised on a farm in central California and had to work from a young age. When I was in fifth grade I was asked to fill in on the junior high 4x100 relay team. I dropped the baton in my first race. That was embarrassing!
In high school I ran track and cross country. By the time I was in my early 20’s my knees wouldn’t let me run anymore, so I picked up playing volleyball. At first I played indoor six’s on a church league, then four’s on the grass and finally beach. When I started playing volleyball I thought I was “too old” to play beach. I laugh about that now because I know it is much more about technique and being in shape than it is about age.
When I went to college in my 30’s there was a ballroom dance team that offered beginner classes. After one six week course I was hooked. I think it is beautiful, I love the social aspect of it and it is great exercise – especially the fast dances like Quickstep, Viennese waltz and Hustle.
In the last several years I have added biking, inline skating and even some swimming because they are easier on my joints than some of my other activities. I also did indoor rock climbing when I lived near a facility that offered it.
My next sporty goal is to try something I can do outside in the winter, like snowshoeing or cross country skiing, but I am open to trying my hand at just about anything, given the opportunity.
Staying motivated and challenged
GirlsGoneSporty (GGS): What is your motivation for staying active?
Fortunately, because of my work with Champion Performance Development (www.ChampPerformance.com) and the Stop The Drama! Campaign (www.StopTheDramaNow.com) I get to work with driven, high performers. There is nothing that helps motivate me more than seeing someone else push themselves and succeed.
GGS: What sports or fitness accomplishments are you most proud of?
RO: That is a tough one. There are two things that stand out for me. The time my volleyball partner and I signed up to play in a women’s tournament but it was canceled and we decided to play in the men’s tournament instead. We didn’t win, but we did place and we beat the team that ended up winning when we played them in the first round. That was a long, hot day in the sand, but we really pulled together and played well as a team.
The other is learning to waltz. It was something I always wanted to do and it makes me proud that now I can.
GGS: How do you keep challenging yourself to improve?
RO: I have always been competitive with myself. When I am healthy, pushing myself is easy. The challenge for me is when I get injured or hit a setback. Sometimes it is tough to keep going when I feel like I am out of shape or not where I used to be. In those cases it is always great to have a partner or teammate to help me out.
Tools of the trade
GGS: What’s your favorite healthy food or dish?
RO: Whatever is fast and easy. Bonus if someone else makes it!
GGS: What's on your workout playlist?
RO: I generally don’t listen to music when I workout (unless you count the music played at ballroom dance socials). When I am in the gym I like to be able to chat with my fellow gym rats. When I bike I often rehearse for my next speaking engagement or think about how I can help a client get from where they are to where they want to be. And during volleyball of course I am talking to my teammates.
GGS: What’s in your gym bag?
RO: Let’s see, without looking I know there are always protein bars, athletic tape, an ace bandage, sunscreen, a chemical ice pack, eye wash solution, a pack of tissues and a towel. On any given day, depending on what I have planned, you may also find weight lifting gloves, volleyball knee pads, shoes with my active ankle braces in them, extra socks, workout clothes and a water bottle.
Live the sporty life
GGS: What does the phrase “live the sporty life” mean to you?