She's a six-time world champion surfer who won her first title as a rookie. With a social following of over 1 million, Stephanie Gilmore is clearly a force in and out of the ocean.
She Does This spoke with Steph about her career, staying healthy and her latest role as brand ambassador for Australia's first and only 100% natural vitamin's, The Natural Vitamin Co..
SDT: You’re easily one of the most celebrated female surfers of our time. Where does your deep love for the ocean and the sport come from?
SG: I grew up on the coast of NSW, but my dad would take me to Coolangatta at every opportunity. I think that was more or less for him to go surfing and share his love of it with us, but to have him drag my sisters and I was all part of the plan and I just fell in love with the waves too. Once I was old enough to leave home, I moved to Coolangatta so I could be closer to one of Australia’s best surf breaks. It became my training ground. Everywhere I travel around the world I'm always telling people about how wonderful the Australian beaches are and how spoilt we are to grow up and live here.
SDT: You’ve had the most incredible career up till now within the surfing world. What have been some of your highlights?
SG: Winning six World Titles has just been the most incredible and humbling journey. Only recently the World Surf League announced equal prize money for men and women and this was a huge and necessary step in gender equality. This message holds significance far beyond surfing and sport and helps progress the message into general society. I’m proud it happened during my career and can be a voice for it. The WSL is the first American-based global sports league to offer gender pay equality. This was a huge milestone for me as a female surfer.
SDT: You have an enormous social media following (over half a million on Instagram alone!), how important is it for you to be a role model for your younger followers?
SG: I think we all have a role to play in being a positive role model. Particularly on social media, I just want to be myself and show people what I do day to day. I’m lucky that surf imagery and footage is beautiful and interesting for people who don’t even surf. I like to showcase that surfing is a lifestyle and can help one get
away from their everyday things, and most of all it’s fun. It’s important for me to be honest and true to myself on social media as the influence you can have (sometimes unintentionally) can make waves (pun intended!) around the world in seconds.
SDT: Being an elite athlete, so many people would look to you for advice on staying fit and healthy. What are some of your top tips for them?
SG: The best thing you can do is to live a balanced life - Listen to you body and what feels good and what doesn’t. Be active for your mind not just your body, eat well, treat yourself occasionally and make sure you find time to relax and just be.
SDT: You’ve partnered up with Natural Vitamin Co., a new vitamin range developed with plants, not in a lab. How passionate are you about this product range and natural products as a whole?
Partnering with The Natural Vitamin Co. was an easy decision. As a professional surfer, I have to be careful I’m giving my body what it needs, especially for longevity as an athlete. A few years ago, I started working with an integrated medicine guy and began including vitamins and supplements in my every day diet. I always looked for vitamin’s that don’t use synthetics, so when I found Natural Vitamin’s Co it made perfect sense. Where possible I believe natural is better, after all food is our fuel. To team up with an Australian business that produces natural vitamins made from organic fruit and vegetables is a great fit for me. Now it’s an essential part of my routine.
Keeping up nutrition can be a challenge for anyone, that’s why I love The Natural Vitamin Co., I can get a top up of vitamins that my body needs which comes from nature – they’re all natural and made from organic fruit and vegetables. The Natural Vitamin Co. contains no nasties – no chemicals, no pesticides, no synthetics, no artificial colours or flavours, so I know I am giving my body the best!
SDT: What does your daily vitamin intake look like?
SG: The Natural Vitamin Co. Women’s Multivitamin — I take these with me on the road to keep my energy levels up and to make sure I am really giving my body a natural vitamin boost. I need zinc, licorice root liquid, calcium, super greens & Vitamin B generally. I also take Hair, Skin & Nails – I’m in the sun so much and salt water can be harsh on my skin and hair. The collagen in Hair, Skin & Nails helps keep my hair and skin in check and hair feeling thick. If I need a little extra something or when I am run down, I take a Vitamin C tablet, they’re great for an immunity boost and for getting extra antioxidants.
SDT: You’ve already inspired so many with your success up to this point. Looking ahead, what does the future look like for Steph Gilmore?
SG: I'm not one to be too focused on the future, I prefer to live in the moment and tackle each opportunity as it arises. Surfing is in my blood, so even if I’m not competing, I’m chasing waves somewhere in the world and hope to be doing that forever.
Traveling the world, having fun, a good dance party every now and then, chatting to people from different walks of life and hearing their stories is what I love and hope to continue doing!
Check out the full Natural Vitamin Co range HERE