Really quick: list a group of athletes from the late 20th/ 21st centuries who have dominated their sports' AND revolutionized the concept of winning: Michael Jordan, Derek Jeter, Tiger Woods, Kelly Slater -- Kelly Slater??
Yup. The 34-year old veteran has dominated professional surfing since his entry at the ripe age of 18, winning an unprecedented 7 world titles and becoming the face of his sport.
MF caught up with the living legend and discussed how he managed to stay on top of his game, his new DVD, and crazy female stalkers.
MF: You're a 22-year veteran of professional surfing, yet amazingly enough, you're only 34-years old. How do you remain in shape and maintain your physique?
Kelly Slater: Actually, I've been pro for 16 years now, since I was 18. I think having a good outlook and just doing a lot of activity will keep you in shape. You have to try to eat well also and remain young in your mind.
MF: You've won seven world titles, including 5 in a row. As winning becomes more and more routine, how do you maintain focus and, more importantly, your drive to succeed?
KS: Your mind has to have fresh outlooks on why you are winning. I surf more now for other people than myself. I feel a lot of support from people wanting me to do well and I feed off that. I can send a positive message to people from what I do.
MF: How did being a world champion at 20 years old change your life? How did you deal with the pressure then (as opposed to now)?
KS: It didn't really change my life. I made more money and had more confidence to know what I could do but I was the same essentially. I got fed up with the pressure pretty easily then. I think I did no interviews for about 6 months at one point.