Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova has officially joined the ranks as one of the few elite athletes to achieve a career Grand Slam after she won the French Open Saturday. She is only the tenth woman in tennis history to win the French, U.S. and Australian Open, as well as Wimbledon.
Sharapova defeated her Italian contender Sara Errani 6-3, 6-2 after a grueling 89-minute final match. This win will put her back on top of the world tennis rankings, which is the first time she’s held the number-one spot since June 2008.
While Sharapova has achieved much success in her nearly 10-year career, it hasn’t come easy. The Russian star admits she’s dedicated to her training regimen that includes four-to-five-hour-a-day workouts six days a week with only one day for rest and recovery. (more…)
Venus Williams, the seven time Grand Slam winner known for her colorful appearance both on and off the tennis courts, has decided to go vegan. Specifically, she has begun a raw foods vegan diet in a quest to manage her recent diagnosis of Sjogren’s syndrome, an autoimmune disease which has no cure in which the body attacks itself.
Williams has taken up her new dietary regimen to try to get a handle on her disease. She hopes that by swearing off of all animal products she can manage the symptoms of her disease, which include dry mouth, joint pain and often crushing fatigue. Sjogren’s presents in a similar fashion to fibromyalgia, and studies have shown that those who suffer from fibromyalgia have found some relief by choosing a vegan diet. In some cases, people who suffer from Sjogren’s have experienced kidney disease.
Venus Williams was diagnosed with Sjogren’s a month before the U.S. Open began. She attempted to compete, although she was forced to pull out just before her second match. She’s visited multiple doctors to try to determine why she’s suffered from so much pain and a lack of energy over the years, reporting that at times, it’s been difficult to even lift her tennis racket.
Biggest Loser fans are buzzing with speculations that tennis star Anna Kournikova will be replacing Jillian Michaels on the next season of The Biggest Loser. Weather or not this rumor proves to be true, Kournikova certainly seems to be in great shape. So what is Kournikova’s approach to staying thin?
Unlike Jillian Michaels, who was once heavy and went through the struggle of weight loss, Kournikova is naturally tall and thin. But she doesn’t necessarily eat whatever she wants. “All in moderation. I try to eat a balanced diet but do not deprive myself of the occasional splurge,” she writes in the Question and Answer forum on her website. “I like plain Corn Flakes. My favorite meal really depends on what mood I am in but over all I could eat pizza anytime.” She adds that she likes all kinds of salads and raw veggies, but also enjoys the occasional indulgence. “If I am going to have something that rich I would rather have a good piece of cake.” Kournikova says she even goes to McDonald’s from time to time.
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Just in time for the US Open, Venus Williams reveals her workout secrets. Of course, the tennis star spends two to three hours training on the courts, but it takes a lot more to stay in top-performance shape. “It’s kind of a nine to five thing with a full day of working out,” she told FitSugar. “I do anything like ride the bike, the elliptical, swimming, or sprinting—things like that.”
Venus loves to swim: “Swimming is my favorite cardiovascular activity. Lately I have been swimming in the ocean too. The water has been real calm in Florida this summer and it’s real flat.” But the tennis player confesses that she hates doing elbow planks, also know as prone holds, that work the core muscles. “I don’t like planks,” says Venus. “I don’t like slow and tedious exercise. Ones that you have to do on both sides. Those really get me down.”