This dual life also requires meticulous planning. When Almida gets back late from her evening curling practice, she prepares her evening snack and a healthy breakfast with soaked oats, yoghurt and raspberries for the next morning. And when she’s not traveling to curling competitions, Sundays are spent stocking up the freezer with nutritionally-balanced, home-cooked lunches for the following week – with help from her supportive boyfriend and chief groceries shopper, Gustav.
The average age of an elite curler is 30-35 and Almida is still only 25, so she’s in it for the long haul. “That’s why it’s so important for me to have a sustainable lifestyle, to not be stressed by combining both curling and work, but to have that work/life balance. Because otherwise, I’d never have the energy to last for that long. So the secret is to minimize stress and prioritize yourself.”
Maybe we couch potatoes just haven’t found the right sport yet? That’s an important first step in becoming more active – even for Olympians: “It has to be fun and really a passion for you to be able to do it as much as I do – otherwise it would just be a burden,” Almida agrees. “I love to curl because it’s a great combination of tactics, precision and physical strength – and also, I just love working together in a team,” she explains.
What’s Almida’s advice for other people who want to combine following their dreams with their day job?
“Just dare to ask. Really try to go after what you want and ask people around you for support, because often, you’ll get more support than you might think. And the worst-case scenario is that you get a ‘no’ and you figure it out in a different way.”