These bodies stayed imprinted in our heads long after the credits rolled.Read article
The Dream Team
Ever since she was a young girl, Ali Krieger dreamed of becoming a professional soccer player. Now a defender for the Washington Spirit and a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team, she doesn’t take her position for granted. “I’m constantly inspired by my teammates to always want to get better and be successful,” Krieger says. “I want to win a World Cup!”
No Train, No Gain
To get that prize, Krieger puts in serious work. Though her training relates directly to her position on the field, she focuses on specific conditioning off-field. “Being explosive and powerful, having good footwork and quality speed are essential for me,” Krieger says. Her top workouts include plyometrics and sprints, and she also loves speed and agility work. To step things up a notch, she incorporates battle ropes and TRX into her routine. “Battle rope drills are one of the toughest yet most rewarding exercises I do at the gym. They are a full-body workout, making me feel every muscle!”
Food for Thought
“I do feel more disciplined with my nutrition in-season, but I live a rather healthy lifestyle year-round,” Krieger says. “It’s important that I stay fit in order to play at the high level that we do.” When she does indulge, it’s typically with chocolate, cookies, or peanut butter–filled pretzels.
Krieger wants you to get and stay functionally fit, too, which is why she’s partnered with her trainer on the new eBook Train Like a Pro: Plyometrics featuring Ali Krieger (designed by elite athlete performance coach Chris Gorres) that’s packed with plyometric workouts. “It’s designed for the athlete looking to build speed and become more explosive,” she says. “It also simply helps get your body moving better. I can definitely feel a difference in my mobility, stability, strength, and power.” Her favorite: drills that develop acceleration from a standstill.
All this training needs to be balanced with some serious downtime. Krieger loves to be outdoors while not on the clock. In addition to cruiser biking along the beach in SoCal, Krieger can be found hiking—or taking any other opportunity to be outside and be active. “I love going to the beach and paddleboarding—or at least trying to,” she says. Spa days are also key, as is traveling. “It’s very refreshing when I can get away and do ‘normal’ day-to-day things with my closest friends and loved ones.”
World Cup Buff
“My hope is that the WC will continue to help grow the ‘Beautiful Game’ around the world,” Krieger says. “I also hope it sparks support for women’s football so that younger athletes will be able to have dreams of one day playing professionally.”