Brianne Thiesen Eaton On Her Journey To Success
Congratulations on winning bronze! You had an amazing performance. How are you feeling?
I think I’ve done a fairly good job. There’s been a little bit of inconsistencies from the day-to-day, but the competition ran smoothly. I feel good. I’m happy with it.
Tell me about your selfie with Usain Bolt.
We just got our medals. We were standing there watching the Men’s 100m and he ran by. I was with the girls (fellow medallists Nafissatous Thiam of Belgium and Jessica Ennis-Hill of Great Britain) and said, ‘we should just run over there and get a selfie with him.’ And that’s what happened!
You love to cook. What are some of your favourite go-to meals?
I don’t really have go-to meals, I just like to research and try out new stuff. I get bored with the same old food so if I feel like a certain food one night, I’ll look up a recipe online.
We (my husband and I) eat the same things as everyone else does, just healthier versions. So instead of plain stirred yogurt, we’ll have Greek yogurt and we’ll add our own fruits. We’ll have quinoa and brown rice instead of white rice. Instead of ground beef, we’ll use ground turkey. And if we are going to have beef, we’ll make sure it’s good quality. We also have a lot of chicken or fish. It’s a pretty normal diet!
What’s been the biggest challenge to get where you are now?
Just giving up all the things like holidays and events and not being able to see friends. It’s tough. And it makes you wonder: if it doesn’t work out, if I don’t get that medal or go to the Olympics, is it really worth it?
Mental toughness is key to success in any sport. Do you have any tips on how other women can become more mentally strong?
The big thing about being mentally tough is just putting things into perspective. A lot of the time, when you’re going through something hard, it’s really easy to catastrophize things.
This happens to me a lot in my life. When I’m going through something tough I think, ‘Oh, I’m not going to get through this.’ I remember when I would be studying for a test in grade school – I used to think it would be the end of my life if I didn’t pass.
Once you put it into perspective and realize: this is just a small blimp in life, I’m not going to die from it, it gets better. And when I look back, it’s always made me stronger.
You’ve been tweeting about how grateful you are for the support from your hometown, Humboldt, Sask. What was your favourite thing about growing up there?
My favourite thing about growing up in Humboldt was that it was small and there was a lot of space. My parents would always let me go out on my own. Everyone knew each other there and it’s always been a very supportive place.
Everyone there knows me as the Brianne I was growing up. I’m still that person, but once you go to an Olympic level, sometimes people treat you like you’re a different person. I love going back to Humboldt because I just get treated like my old self. People on the street would come up and just say hello and say, ‘Hey Brianne, how’s it going?’
What’s the best advice your mom has given to you? (Brianne and her mom, Kim, are a part of P&G’s ‘Thank You, Mom’ campaign).
Just try your hardest. If you do that, you’ll be happy with whatever happens.
Now that the Olympics are almost over, what are you looking forward to?
I’m going to watch my husband (American decathlete and Olympic champion, Ashton Eaton) compete for the next few days. I’m looking forward to some downtime to just relax and take some trips.