Q+A: Aly Raisman

It’s safe to safe that Aly Raisman has accomplished a lot in her 18 years. She has become one of the world’s greatest gymnasts, winning gold in London with Team USA and an individual gold in the floor competition, as well as a bronze on balance beam. The excitement hasn’t stopped for the Needham native since her return to the States. She’s been busy with television appearances, sponsorship deals, and even her own parade.

I caught up with Raisman on Monday just before her autograph signing at the American Girl Doll store at the Natick Mall and asked her a few questions about her training, her gold medals, and what she wants to do after she’s done ruling the gymnastics world.

Was it bittersweet coming back from London?
Yeah, I miss being in the village. I had a lot of fun with my teammates. It was sad leaving because I miss the girls.

What have you been doing since you’ve been back?
I started training the first week I got back. I’ve been doing something everyday to get ready for a gymnastics showcase where we travel to 40 cities doing gymnastics.

What is an Olympic training schedule like?
I workout 7 to 7 1/2 hours per day, 30-35 hours per week.

That’s like a full-time job.

What has been your biggest sacrifice to keep that kind of training schedule?
I had to miss my senior year, which was hard, but the Olympics make it worth it.

Can you describe those gold medal moments?
There are no words that can describe them. You work your whole life for that moment, so it’s a really good feeling.

Do you plan to compete in the 2016 Olympics?
Yeah, I had my first major competition in Brazil, so I want to start and end my career there.

What do you think you’ll do after gymnastics?
Something with fashion. Maybe design my own workout line.