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Abby: "When I was younger, I played in boys' leagues, because the level of competition wasn't quite the same for girls. I never thought I'd be able to just play without having to hold a second job. But now, because of the popularity of women's sports, the skill level for elite girls is so high that they can play competitively with women throughout their lives."FITNESS: How can girls get more involved in sports?
Abby: "Camps kept me out of trouble growing up. Now I run the all-girls Abby Wambach Soccer Camp in Pittsford, New York. My dream is to help girls be active, healthy, and involved with something that turns them into strong, successful women."FITNESS: What's your favorite leisure sport -- aside from soccer, of course?
Abby: "I like to run, watch-free. I also love to mountain bike in our off-season -- going downhill gives me an adrenaline rush!"FITNESS: What's it like training for the World Cup?
Abby: "Pressure-packed -- my job is to score goals. So two or three times a week, in addition to practice and weight lifting, I get to the field early and shoot about 50 balls into the net."FITNESS: With so much time traveling and training, is it hard to maintain relationships or date?
Abby: "Cell phones and e-mail help! But I love playing soccer, and I truly believe that what I've learned on the field has driven me to be better at everything I do."FITNESS: Would you like to have kids someday?
Abby: "Absolutely! And still play -- literally, be a soccer mom."
"I just read this riveting story about two Afghan women."Relaxing Tunes
"I've always been into slow music during workouts. I'm a big fan of Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and Natalie Merchant."The Perfect Pair of Shoes
"I train in Nike First2 Pro cleats. They're super lightweight and fit my feet perfectly." ($150; nike.com)Thirst Quenchers
"I took a sweat test at the Gatorade Sports Science Institute in Chicago and learned that I lose about two liters of sweat per hour of play. I drink Gatorade before and during games to help replace lost electrolytes."
Originally published in FITNESS magazine, September 2007.