Seattle Storm guard Sandy Brondello turned 35 on August 20, 2003, but she isn't letting that get in the way of her WNBA career. Brondello shares the secrets of her fitness routine, from the exercises she likes and dislikes to her recovery tactics and pregame eating habits.
Squats are the best exercise for leg strength, power and explosiveness -- not that I have all of this, but I work hard on getting stronger each season. Being a jump-shooter, I feel this exercise helps the most.
What is your favorite exercise for the upper body?
Bench press ... well before I messed up my shoulder, that is. I felt like this helped me stay strong so that I can compete with the stronger, more physical play in the league.
What is your favorite cardio exercise?
Running. Having foot injuries throughout my career, I get bored of the bike and pool running. Even though these help me maintain my fitness, running is the most enjoyable and beneficial.
How do you work out on your off days during the season?
With age, I have learned to enjoy my days off with recovery sessions (i.e., massages, sauna, etc.).
What do you do to stay in shape during the offseason?
Last year was my first offseason in 10 years due to injury, so I kept fit by doing the activities I could (weights, swimming, bike).
What are your toughest fitness challenges?
4x17 court sprints (sidelines). The fitness test with Seattle. I nearly collapsed but SURVIVED and passed the test.
Is there a fitness goal that you have set for yourself that you are working towards?
No, but I keep on working on maintaining the level I am at.
Is there a fitness accomplishment you are most proud of?
Not really, but it feels good when you get stronger in your exercises.
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to get into better shape for playing basketball?
Be as specific as possible in your training.
How would you describe the role of fitness and exercise in your life?
Extremely important. It helps me to continue to compete at the highest level as I get older.
When did you start working out?
I was always active from a young age, especially being a carefree, country girl. I started lifting weights during my first year at AIS (Australian Institute of Sport) at the age of 17.
How has your fitness routine changed over the years?
My routine hasn't changed much. I have to work out but I am more cautious with over-training, which I did for many years. It is all about QUALITY, not QUANTITY now.
Is there a certain food that you like to eat before games?
What foods do you have a weakness for?
I usually eat a high carbohydrate/low fat diet but I do have a weakness for chocolate.
What is your favorite healthy snack?