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What Does it Take to Be an Olympian?

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Do you watch the Olympics in amazement like I do? Do you ever sit there and wonder what it takes to do what these athletes are accomplishing? So do I so I looked it up. You want to be an Olympic athlete? Here’s what you need.

In order to prepare for the London Olympic Games, martial arts expert Travis Stevens trained five times per day. He did 90 minutes of weight training, 90 minutes of judo, 30 minutes of sprints, an hour of cross training, another hour and a half of judo and then an hour of running.

Eighteen time gold medal winner Michael Phelps has to eat 12 thousand calories per day just to replenish what he burns in training. That amount is more calories than a family of four typically eats. Michael told Anderson Cooper that it averages out to be in the neighborhood of six to ten pounds of food per day, including two pounds of pasta, a dozen eggs and a whole pizza as PART of his dinner. Check out a photo gallery of a reporter attempting to eat it all HERE.

Olympic gold medal winning gymnast and Dancing With the Stars champion Shawn Johnson did a hundred chin ups during training and conditioning sessions when she was in eighth grade. You know what I was doing in 8th grade? Probably lighting things on fire.

How many hours do you work at your job each week? British Triathlete Johnny Brownlee works out 35 hours per week. He works out rain or shine. He does eight hours of swimming, ten hours of running 17 hours on the bike and he hits the gym to lift weights.

How much money do you win if you manage to medal? A gold medal is worth 25 thousand dollars, silver is worth 15 thousand and bronze will get you ten thousand dollars. So what if you don’t win or have a corporate sponsor? Zip. Zilch. Nada. The government doesn’t support the athletes in any financial way and nor do they have health insurance, but the winners still have to pay taxes on the money. Nice.

Suddenly, sitting on the couch watching the Olympics doesn’t sound so bad.

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