For Elite athletes, it can be hard to maintain their bodies at peak physical condition after retirement.
But for two former USA Gymnastics National Team members, they are using Instagram to motivate not only themselves but others to workout every day.
Samantha Peszek was a National Team member from ’07-’10 and during this time she had some outstanding international performances. These included:
- 2008 City of Jesolo Trophy – 1st-Team & 3rd-AA
- 2008 Tyson American Cup – 3rd-AA
- 2007 World Championships – 1st-Team
- 2007 Pan American Games – 1st-Team
Sam went onto to compete for UCLA from ’11-’15 where she won Gold on Beam at NCAA Championships in 2011 and then again in 2015 where she also won the All-Around.
As a National Team member from ’04-’13, Alicia Sacramone also had an amazing international resume that included;
- 2011 World Championships – 1st-Team
- 2010 World Championships – 1st-VT; 2nd-Team; 5th-BB
- 2008 Olympic Games – 2nd-Team; 4th-VT
- 2007 World Championships – 1st-Team; 2nd-FX; 3rd-VT
- 2006 World Championships – 2nd-Team, VT
- 2005 World Championships – 1st-FX; 3rd-VT
- 2005 Pan American Championships – 1st-Team, VT, FX; 5th-AA
- 2005 American Cup – 1st-VT; 2nd-FX
- 2004 Pan American Individual Event Championships – 1st-VT, FX
After her Elite career, Alicia went on to compete for Brown University. During her freshman year, Alicia set school records on Vault & the All-Around and went on to win the All-Around and all four event titles at the Ivy League Classic.
A highlight of both their careers was being teammates on the 2008 Olympic Team that won Team Silver in Beijing, China.
These two amazing athletes have now come together and created “The Gympire”!
GBC: What is the Gymnast Empire (aka. The Gympire)?
GP: In short, The Gympire is a gymnastics based fitness community. It’s always a big struggle to stay in shape after years of training and eating extremely healthy. Now, we’re retired and wanting to live a “normal” healthy life and we know there are so many other women out there like us, which is why we wanted to build this community that inspires each other.
GBC: You two were Olympic team mates in 2008. But how did you come together for this project?
GP: We were inspired to start The Gympire after we retired because we started texting each other workout ideas and exercise ideas to stay motivated, since we weren’t able to workout with each other. We figured that if we wanted to stay in shape post-gymnastics, there most be a bunch of other gymnasts out there like us too. In gymnastics, it’s not standard to lift a bunch of weights or run a crazy amount or even go to a normal health club, so we wanted to put a gymnastics spin on “regular” workouts that felt more normal and comfortable to us gymnasts out there. We also felt like no workout or class was fulfilling all our exercise needs, which is why we started brainstorming our own.
GBC: Who came up with the idea and why?
GP: It was definitely a collaborative effort on both of our ends. We make a really good team because we have the same vision for The Gympire and we’re always brutally honest with each other. It’s fun to work on this project with someone you know so well and have the same background and mindset when it comes to health and fitness.
GBC: When did the Gympire begin posting workouts?
GP: I think about 2 years ago. I can’t believe it’s already been 2 years!
GBC: Why use Instagram to post your workouts instead of another social media site?
GP: We felt it was the right platform for us. We usually post short workout clips or exercises and we thought Instagram would be a good way to engage with other former gymnasts about our workouts and get ideas from the community as well. We love when people tag us or share their progress with us. We’re so inspired by the Gymtourage community.
GBC: What do you hope to accomplish with the Gympire?
GP: At the core of what we wanted to do is build a community. That’s what we decided to start with and that is what will be the heart of everything we do moving forward. We would love to host pop-up workout events/retreats where we use exercise for improving all other areas of your life. It’s definitely not in the near future, but we know that working out has so many benefits other than just to stay in shape. It’s a mindset, that you want to be the best you can be in all aspects of your life.
GBC: Alicia, you have posted some workouts with your daughter. Do you think you will post more to help motivate parents to work out while spending time with their child?
GP: I will definitely post more work out videos with my daughter, Sloan! Once you become a parent you have to learn how to multi-task, I get to work out and spend time with my little one. She is practically running these days so the next work outs will most likely be me sprinting after her.
GBC: You post work outs independently and also together. How often do you two get together to record workouts?
GP: We try to get together to create content as a duo every few months. We are always talking or FaceTiming each other to go over work out ideas and a game plan for our next time we are in the same place.
GBC: What is the next step for the Gympire? Are there plans to expand the brand and/or reach? If so, what are the plans?
GP: Our next major goal is to create Gymnastics inspired work out programs. We want to give everyone a little taste of what kind of conditioning we do to keep in shape. The workout is based on three pillars; Strength, Balance, and Flexibility, which is the foundation to be a good gymnast and also important for your life after gymnastics as well. We believe that the strength you build in the gym, will translate to a strong mind in your work life, home life, etc.
Click here to join the Gympire community today!