I get this adrenaline rush from just going down the course and feeling like I made a really great turn and I'm going to do it again and again and again. That feeling can't be replaced, and that's the feeling I'm striving to get every time I go out there.
Whether it's learning to hit a backhand in tennis, learning high school chemistry, or getting better at ski racing, I really believe with hard work and analytic preparation, you can skip a few steps and find the faster way.
Here's the thing. You can't get ten thousand hours of skiing. You spend so much time on the chairlift. My coach did a calculation of how many hours I've been on snow. We'd been overestimating. I think we came up with something like eleven total hours of skiing on snow a year. It's, like, seven minutes a day.
One of the biggest misconceptions is that carbs are bad. It's a fad right now. Full disclosure: I'm sponsored by Barilla. But I've always been free about saying I love carbs, including pasta, in moderation.
During the season, one of the most important things to eat is the carbs. Protein's really important, too, but it's the carbs that are important because I have to consistently refuel for the next day.
I do doubles on Monday and Thursday, take Wednesday off or do easy cardio, do doubles on Thursday and Friday, and the weekend I just get outside and get active - jog or bike ride, or play tennis with my mom.
I don't really have time or interest in doing a lot of the crazy things that some of my teenage peers do, mostly because I have such a hectic life that I don't need to add to that chaos by creating my own teenage drama like a lot of teenagers do.
I've learned some quick tricks about how to fix my hair so I can dash somewhere unexpected and still be O.K. when someone stops me to take a picture.
My whole thing is simple, well-balanced meals. I have to say, though, that I really like dessert. I try not to eat dessert every day, but I'll have dessert every now and then.
I love traveling and seeing new things, learning the histories of different cultures. But I've always wanted to go to the Galapagos to see the giant turtles.
I've had a lot of people tell me, 'Yeah, sure, you're good at slalom, but wait till you get to the real events like downhill or super-G.' I don't like hearing that.
Dream big, but don't be upset if it doesn't happen.
My parents strapped a pair of plastic skis on my boots when I was two years old and sent me down our driveway in Vail. Of course, they were holding on to me the whole time, but that was my first experience 'skiing.'
One thing I've learned from winning an Olympic medal is that it's really exhausting.
It rained a lot in New Hampshire, and when I skied, the snow was icy and hard, and the mountains were small.
I haven't had to make a decision between 'my brand' and money. Everybody seems to get what I'm going for: the healthy lifestyle, staying active, being young and youthful.
After many of my victories, I hear people asking me these questions: 'What else is there to win?' And I want to shout, 'What do you mean, what else? There's so much else!'
Out on the hill under the helmet, nobody sees your face or hair, but then you take it off, and they do - that's the part I'm nervous about.
Pasta is my superfood! Balance and moderation are the basis for my diet, though, so I also make sure to incorporate plenty of protein, fruits, and veggies throughout the day.
If you strive toward the perfect run, accepting that you will always come up short of that is very intriguing. It makes me think about how in life in general, we always want to strive toward perfection, but sometimes perfection would be the worst thing.