Oatmeal, eggs, and whole wheat toast are a typical breakfast when Ms. Morgan is training. Lunch and dinner are usually some type of pasta with a light sauce and grilled chicken or fish. Dinner might include a salad or side of vegetables. “At dinner, after working so hard all day, I’m definitely not afraid to have a cookie,” she says.
During workouts Ms. Morgan keeps her energy up with energy gels and bars. “I’m not big on energy drinks because those can make you crash later. During games I like to eat candy like gummy bears because it gives you sustainable energy.”
Most athletes let themselves splurge more once the season ends, but Ms. Morgan says she has to pay more attention to her diet. “Since I’m not training as vigorously, I don’t need as many calories so I need to watch how much I’m eating. I definitely cut back on the pasta.”
Gear & Cost
Nike is a sponsor of the U.S. women’s national soccer team so Ms. Morgan wears Nike gear. “I love the Nike Free running shoes because they’re very light and I can throw them on to go for a run but also they’re casual enough to wear when I go out with friends.”
Ms. Morgan wears compression pants, particularly when she flies, to help with circulation. During every training session and every game she and her teammates wear heart-rate monitors and GPS watches. “We actually wore them for a year leading up to the Olympics to ensure that our heart rate was in the proper zone and to track our acceleration and deceleration. Our coach has all of that data stored.”
Least Favorite Exercise
“Lunges are so important to the sport because they work everything—the quads, hamstrings, core. But you have to do them properly making sure your knee doesn’t extend past your foot so you get the total benefit and so you don’t get hurt. I think I dislike them because I have to do them every day.”
Ms. Morgan likes to listen to upbeat songs by artists like Katy Perry and Rihanna when she’s in the gym. She puts on more mellow music, like the Kings of Leon, when she’s on the bus heading to a game.
Very active at a young age, Alex participated in several sports until she was 14 years old. Traveling from soccer practice to basketball practice to softball, volleyball, and track, Alex was a multi-sport athlete well into her teenage years. She did not begin playing club soccer until she was 14 years old; several years later than most players who go on to reach the elite levels of the sport. Although she didn’t have the level of experience her teammates embodied when she started, her talent exhibited that she could be an impact player immediately.
It wasn’t long before Alex earned a call-up to the U-17 Women’s National tTeam, and soon after went on to play at the University of California at Berkeley from 2007-2010.
She closed her career as a Golden Bear the same manner in which she began it — as the Cal Women’s Soccer Team’s season leading scorer. Alex concluded her four years at Berkeley tied for the third all-time scorer in California history with 45 goals, and in sole possession of third place based on points –107. As a sophomore at Cal, she was named to the United States U-20 Women’s National Team that competed in the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Chile, scoring a total of four goals in the tournament against France, Argentina and North Korea. Her last game winning goal scored against North Korea was subsequently voted the “Best Goal of the Tournament”, and later FIFA’s “Second-Best Goal of the Year.” Alex’s performance on the field earned her the Bronze Shoe as the tournament’s third-highest scorer, and the Silver Ball as the tournament’s second-best player.Equally talented on the pitch as she is in the classroom, she was named to the 2010 CoSIDA/ESPN Academic All-District team. She graduated in December 2010, a full semester early thanks to her dedication in the offseason and summer, with a degree in political economy. She has been lauded for her studies as a three-time Pac-10 All-Academic honorable mention.
In 2009, Alex became the youngest member of the Senior U.S. Women’s National team. First appearing as a substitute in a match versus Mexico in March 2010, and scored her first international goal after coming on as a substitute against China in October 2010.
Her most important goal to date came a month later in a crucial road game against Italy with a Women’s World Cup berth on the line for the United States. Despite missing a number of college matches to play for the U-20 and Senior National Team, she became the Bears’ third all-time leading scorer. If Alex had not been helping the Senior U.S. Women’s National Team quality for the 2011 World Cup, she would have undoubtedly secured first place in both Cal’s all-time scoring and overall points.
On January 14, 2011, Alex was drafted the #1 overall pick in the 2011 WPS Draft by the Western New York Flash. She was the first California Golden Bears Women’s Soccer Player to be drafted in the first round of Women’s Professional Soccer.
In the summer of 2011 Alex was the youngest player named to the United States World Cup roster. On July 13, 2011, she captivated the hearts of viewers worldwide when scored her first FIFA Women’s World Cup goal in the 82nd minute of the semi-final matchup against France giving the USA a 3-1 lead and ultimately, the victory. Alex also went on to score the first goal (69′) in the FIFA World Cup Final against Japan after coming in as a substitute at the half as well as assisting the Abby Wambach header (104′) for a goal in extra time.
The United States went on to lose to Japan and take the silver medal but the team was applauded for their grace in defeat and ability to capture the attention of the world with their play.
All eyes were on the U.S.
Team this summer at the 2012 London Olympic Games. Alex scored the winning goal in the semifinal match against Canada in extra time, sending the United States to the gold medal match against Japan. Her goal came in the 123rd minute, the latest goal ever scored by a member of the U.S. women’s team or in an Olympic match. In the final, a 2-1 win against Japan on August 9, Alex assisted on a Carli Lloyd header. She ended the tournament with 3 goals and a team-high 4 assists (tied with Megan Rapinoe). To celebrate her achievements, she was honored at Diamond Bar High School, and #13 will now be given to the senior captain of the school’s soccer team each year.
Alex Morgan plays at forward position, is 5’7” in height, studies in University of California and resides at Diamond Bar, Calif USA.
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