Our interview with Tanith Belbin, the gorgeous Olympic Medalist, makes it perfectly clear why she is an Olympic Medalist and World Champion Ice Dancer. If you are looking to kick your training up, to reach your ultimate you, to feel passionate about your commitment to your fitness and health, Tanith can help take you there in our interview together.
I'm thrilled to welcome Tanith Belbin to The Global Townhall in our world-class athlete series dedicated especially to taking you to the next level.
Maddie: In the interest of helping our readers around the world excel in their own life, what attributes contributed to you achieving such great results in your sport?
Tanith Belbin: After spending nearly my entire life devoted to a sport, I realized that mental toughness is just as necessary as physical ability in order to reach success at a high level. Regardless of how capable I felt on any given day, I knew I could always rely on my determination and ambition to sustain my competitive momentum. Identifying my goals when I was very young and maintaining focus on them, along with a healthy perspective of how to keep them in balance with the rest of my life, are what I owe the majority of my achievements to!
Maddie: What do you include in your daily workouts?
Tanith Belbin: After so many years of regimented training time on and off the ice, these days I really like to take advantage of the opportunity to get my exercise mostly through outdoor activities like biking, hiking, kayaking and tennis. That being said, I also mix in a few spin and ballet bar classes a couple times a week just to be sure all the muscle groups I want to target are being worked.
Maddie: What motivates you?
Tanith Belbin: I've always been a competitive individual, ever since I was a little girl. I love the feeling of pushing myself beyond where I knew I could reach and discovering new abilities I didn't know I had. My family's love and support is the foundation of both who I am and any future potential I might possess. They've given me the most beautiful life I could ask for and I work to make them proud every day.
Maddie: Do you train year round?
Tanith Belbin: Now that I'm professional, training plays a much smaller role in my daily life. Although I work to stay in shape year round, I don't prepare on the ice for performances with the same intensity I did for competition. Now, when I'm not skating with my partner, I'm coaching and choreographing for the next generation of skaters.
Maddie: How hard did you have to train to get to where you are?
Tanith Belbin: There were certainly a lot of sacrifices that were made along the way by both myself and my family but they were all well worth it. Training is demanding, exhausting, and really feels like it takes over your entire life but the sense of accomplishment you can get from developing yourself as both an athlete and an individual is so rewarding.
Maddie: What does your sleep pattern look like?
Tanith Belbin: I learned early on that a good night's sleep goes a long way and since early morning's are a regular feature of a full-time athlete's life, that means early to bed whenever possible. Typically I try to get 7-8hrs.
Maddie: What does your diet look like?
Tanith Belbin: My mom's always kept our family health conscious and put fresh, natural, non-processed food on our table as much as possible while I was growing up. As an adult, I now rely on my brother, who is a dietitian, to help keep me as healthy and knowledgeable as I can be on what's best for my body. I'm a vegetarian, so it's important that I know the nutritional value of the foods I eat and how to keep my diet balanced without meat.
Maddie: What's on your iPod playlist?
Tanith Belbin: I listen to music to relax more than pump me up so I have a lot of Jason Mraz, Ray LaMontagne, John Legend, Raphael Saadiq.
Maddie: What do you do in your free time?
Tanith Belbin: I'm a homebody so if I'm not doing activities outdoors, I'm curled up on the couch with a good book...although these days since I'm in school its more likely to be a text book!
Maddie: What are your plans for the future?
Tanith Belbin: I'd like to continue pursuing opportunities in the television hosting/broadcasting world and of course, remaining involved with skating through coaching & choreography. I'll also continue to pursue a degree in communications in the meantime and hopefully become more active in public speaking.
Maddie: Who have been the most influential people in your life?
Tanith Belbin: My late grandfather, Robert, lived an exemplary life dedicated to his family and being the best man he could be. His unconditional kindness to all those he encountered inspires me every day to be as generous and compassionate as possible. I also owe so much to my boyfriend, Charlie, who taught me to nurture my soul and have more confidence in myself than I ever had before he came into my life.
Maddie: What are you most excited about now?
Tanith Belbin: Right now I can't wait to start training for the CBC show Battle of the Blades in Toronto, Canada. Female figure skaters get partnered with NHL players to perform as pairs and compete in a live weekly show to win money for our designated charities.