At 36, Venus Williams Is Staying Young at Heart

Venus Williams is 36 years old. No, let’s try that again: Venus Williams is 36 years young.

More than 20 years after she made her debut on the WTA Tour and 13 years since her 2004 victory at the Volvo Car Open, Williams created headlines this January. She made the final of the Australian Open nearly two decades after her first major final, at the U.S. Open in 1997, and eight years since her most recent, at Wimbledon in 2009.

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We got the chance to dive inside the head, heart and everyday activity of one of the greatest women’s players of all time to find out just how she keeps herself motivated, fresh and happy while still being one of the best players on tour.

Q: Tell us about waking up each day, Venus. What’s the first thing you do?

Venus: Each morning I like to take some time to reflect on my day and what I want to accomplish. I try to visualize what my goals are and have the most productive day as possible. Life is all about balance, and although I am busier now than ever running my two businesses in addition to my tennis commitments, I always try to start my days off on a positive note and focus on the tasks at hand for each specific day.

Q: And on the breakfast menu?

Venus: I am not a big fan of breakfast, but I know it’s important. I typically have a green juice or a fruit smoothie. I even bring my blender with me when I travel!

Q: Say it’s a training day. What are you looking to do? And how do you keep it interesting so things don’t get stale?

Venus: My training is equal time on and off of the court. I practice about two or three hours and then typically head to the gym and focus on cardio, strength training and flexibility. I’m not a good distance runner, but I enjoy fast-paced plyometrics and sprints. It’s a lot more intriguing and makes the time go by a lot faster! I recently have been incorporating weights into my workouts, too. I also love to dance and try and find time to do a class when I am home in Florida. It’s a great workout and fun at the same time.

Q: What about when you’re at tournaments? How do you keep things healthy and balanced? 

Venus: At tournaments it is extremely important thatvI am both well prepared and well rested. Listening to my body and making sure I am getting enough rest, especially when it is a two-week tournament is essential. I am also conscious of the food I am putting in my body to keep my energy up and stay healthy.

Q: Not only are you still a top-level player, you’re now running EleVen, a fashion line, and V-Starr Interiors, an interior design firm. Honestly… how do you do it?!

Venus: My day-to-day is heavily involved with my businesses off the court. I always dreamed of being an entrepreneur and EleVen by Venus and V-Starr Interiors are true passions of mine. When I am not traveling or training on the court, I spend a lot of my time at those offices in Florida. Whether it is going over designs for the newest EleVen collection or discussing ideas for a new space we are designing at V-Starr, I am fully involved with my team to deliver the best possible product to our clients.

And, there you have it. Venus Williams is a true wonder woman. She makes her ninth appearance in the Charleston field this week.