Dr. Mark Rafter and Chen Ni interviewed Olympian Amy Cozad Magaña and
in our athlete series we wanted to how the corona virus and postponement of the
Olympics effects athletes.
How did it all start for you?
Amy began her journey as an athlete diving in 2003 at 12 years old. Amy tried swimming, softball, basketball, and golf but it was diving that pulled her in the most. Sean McCarthy was my first diving coach and Amy dove for six years at the Indiana University Natatorium until she went to college where she walked-on to the diving team at Indiana University in 2009. Jeff Huber and Todd Waikel coached her at IU. Amy won her first senior national title as a freshman and went on to achieve many accomplishments in her four years at IU. Amy graduated from IU in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and spent the next three years training for the 2016 Olympics with coaches Patrick Jeffrey and Drew Johansen. Amy competed in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in the Women’s Synchronized Platform event and finished seventh with her partner, Jessica Parratto. After the Olympic Games, Amy married her best friend and he supported her decision to keep training for the 2020 Games. Amy went back to diving with Coach Sean McCarthy. Since then, Amy qualified and competed in grand prixs, the Fina world championships, the Pan American Games, and we’ve won two senior national titles but her sights were set on the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
What is your Favorite Dive?
Amy’s favorite dive is back 3 and a 1/2 tuck and reverse 3 and a 1/2 and is only 1 of 3 women in the world who has ever completed this dive.
How much time is dedicated to training at the Olympic Level?
Amy spends about 30 hours a week Monday through Saturday training for the Olympics. It breaks down as 4 hours in the weight room every week. Two hours of gymnastics training on Saturdays. Monday through Friday, 10 hours diving in the pool and 8 hours on dryland training. An hour every week day watching diving competitions online to prepare mentally for future competitions and 1-2 hours a week on recovery activities going to the chiropractor and getting massaged. Since September of 2017, Amy has worked part-time 20-25 hours a week for a company called enVista in Carmel, Indiana. enVista has been helpful in allowing Amy to work around her training schedule.
Many US Olympic athletes must find companies who will cooperate with their training
while athletes in other countries are paid by their governments.
What is nutrition plan to keep health?
Amy’s nutrition plans focuses on eating the proper balance of carbohydrates, fats and
protein helping to maintain high energy levels for long periods of time, and a quick
recovery. In 2018, Amy started working with a dietitian Diana Vogel from Indianapolis
and focusing on natural organic foods that effect mood and energy levels. Ms. Vogel
created meal plans for Amy to follow throughout a normal training week as well as
during competitions. Now Amy is in the best shape of her life.
What is the biggest challenge to become high level athlete?
The greatest challenges of becoming a high level athlete are the sacrifices that you must be willing to make to perform and win. For Amy it meant she had to postpone a full-time professional career and the income and benefits that come with it. Amy had to postpone starting a family with her husband but managed to be a loving mother of two handsome pups. There are the everyday, recurring sacrifices and decisions that high level athletes are willing to make that sets them apart from others and makes them successful.
How does the postponement of the 2020 Japan Olympics effect you? Amy finds it hard to wait another year but is committed to sacrifice to fulfill her Olympic dream.
We should all be happy to have someone like Amy represent the US. What is life value you learned from being high level athlete?
Amy says she learned perseverance from being a high level athlete. For the last 17 years of her life, Amy committed hours and days to achieve her goals. Diving has truly taught Amy the value of the expressions “it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey” and “it doesn’t matter where you’re going, it matters how you get there.” No matter where life takes her and no matter what challenges are set before her, Amy will persevere and strive for excellence in every aspect of her life.
What is your plan after athlete life?
After the 2020 Olympic Games, Amy plans on starting a full-time career in accounting and traveling the world with her husband, Alex. Right now, Amy is focusing all of her efforts on diving.