Q&A with Shawn Johnson

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We sat down with 2008 Olympic gold medalist Shawn Johnson to find out what’s behind her recipe for success.

Q: What’s your go-to breakfast?

A: I have 2 that I alternate. One is a gluten free piece of toast with a piece of vegan cheese, two fried eggs and avocado. The other is scrambled egg white with spinach, tomatoes and turkey bacon.


Q: We know a lot of athletes like yourself love eggs – in your opinion, why do you think that is?

A: Because eggs are such a healthy option that has high-quality protein. Athletes are always looking for food that’s healthy and something they can utilize in many different ways, because we have to eat such clean meals. There aren’t too many foods we can choose from and with eggs, there are a million different ways you can include them in your diet – it helps keep it interesting!


Q: Favorite moment from Rio?

A: Definitely watching the girls gymnastics team win the team medal. I thought that was really special being able to witness it and seeing them come together.


Q: What’s something surprising people wouldn’t know about training at your level?

A: With baseball, football and even swimming, most sports have an off-season or downtime. But with gymnastics we don’t at all. It’s 365 days a year your entire life – you don’t really have an off-time until you’re retired.


Q: Besides eggs, what’s your favorite meal to cook at home?

A: Besides eggs? I love eggs and cook them so much so this is a tough one! I would say, me and my husband make a good baked salmon and pair it with a baked sweet potato or grilled veggies. We keep it simple.


Q: Who’s the better cook – you or your husband?

A: I would say I’m the better cook, he’s the better grill master.


Q: What’s your favorite sport (other than gymnastics)?

A: Probably track and field. I used to run track, so it’s fun to watch now.


Q: What was your favorite part about growing up in Des Moines?

A: My favorite part about Des Moines is the small community aspect. My entire career and life I had this great community and support around me that really felt like family.


Q: We know you’re a talented athlete, any other hidden talents?

A: I love to bake! I love to bake cupcakes – I could spend like 8 hours baking and decorating cupcakes, I just love it.


Q: What’s your favorite emoji to use on social media?

A: My favorite emoji is either the monkey covering its eyes or the face with his eyes up.