As a professional equestrian and trainer, Brianne Goutal could give George Clooney’s character in the 2009 film Up in the Air a run for his money in the frequent flier category. In one summer alone, she can easily hit a different nation each week.
“On average, we compete in the US from August to March and then we either compete in Canada or Europe. If we are in Europe, we country hop every weekend,” explains the 27 year-old New York native. “Typically, we are in France, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Germany, Belgium and Holland. But I have traveled to Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark, as well as in Central America and South America to Mexico and Argentina for competitions.”
This week, Goutal, a show jumper who among many accomplishments, won the 2013 American Gold Cup Grand Prix and the 2016 Old Salem Farm Grand Prix, will take a break from airports when she rides on her home turf in the Rolex Central Park Horse Show, which starts September 20th at Wollman Rink. In anticipation of the event, Goutal, who has been riding since she was four, offered us a glimpse into her beauty and fitness routine and her go-to diet (think steak for breakfast).
Your beauty look in three words:
Simple, natural, easy.
Good skin starts with…
Best advice from your dermatologist:
Don't over exfoliate. Do so once in a while, not every day.
Inexpensive black eyeliner, literally any brand from the drugstore.
Most underrated product:
A good hair day starts with…
The right rubber band. There is nothing worse than a rubber band that doesn't do the job.
SPF of choice:
Elta MD. I use the UV Clear, but they're all good from this brand!
Never leave the house without:
Sunglasses. Even if it’s raining.
Best beauty advice from your mother:
The best moisturizer for very dry skin is pure olive oil. Don't be afraid to smell like a salad for an hour or two and remember that a little goes a long way.
While in training…
I ride between 5-7 horses a day, 6 days a week. Essentially that is around five hours of non-stop physicality. I'm always awake before 7 a.m. and in general, I get off my last horse around 3 p.m.
Your week in fitness:
I wish I could say, "I get off my last horse and then hit the gym for some pilates!" However, I try to avoid the gym at all costs! My cross training involves a little gyrotechnic (if I am feeling stiff) and a lot of walking. I try to always choose walking over driving when possible and I am active pretty much all day. I hate to be home on the couch for more than a little while.
Favorite pre-competition meal:
Any kind of protein (excluding eggs). I hate eggs and I don't love typical breakfast food. It is not unusual that I eat steak for breakfast.
Favorite post-competition meal:
Greens, a lot of greens. I love big salads and grilled vegetables after I compete.
I'm not a big smoothie person. I like green juice, but only freshly made, never pre-packaged. Still water is my beverage of choice.
Best diet for staying in peak shape:
I consider myself a very healthy eater. Luckily, I have a predisposition for healthy foods. I eat a lot of vegetables and fish. I used to eat a lot of red meat but find myself eating it less often. I have never been a big sweets or dessert eater! I try not to eat a huge quantity. I do not eat huge portions. I would rather eat less than deprive myself of anything.
I feel strongly that at least 50 percent of my sport is mental. Even though I am naturally very calm and relaxed, I try to always take a minute (easier said than done) to put myself in the moment and really centralize my plan.
Competition beauty look:
I put my hair up in my helmet. Can't say this is the sexiest look! My hair is long and thick so I always need a strong rubber band to deal with it!
Au naturale, most of the time. I hate the feeling of a lot of makeup. Once in a while I will put on a little eyeliner... once in a while, but it is a rare occasion. For my wedding, I had my makeup professionally done but as soon as the makeup artist finished I rushed to the bathroom to wash it all off! In general, I let my hair air dry and then throw it up in a high messy bun. My only other style is simply blow-dried straight. ''
Preferred mode of relaxation:
I hate full body massages, but I try to get one about once a month. I have trouble sitting still after 30 mins. I use this new app called Zeel, my sister told me about it. They have great masseuses that come to your house. I love foot massages—I go to my local manicure place and get them regularly. I would say at least once a week when I am in [New York City].
As soon as I get my bag up in the overhead compartment, I go to sleep. I've become very good at sleeping no matter where I am with all my traveling! My husband always tells me he is jealous!
Toothbrush and toothpaste, Chapstick, Beats by Dre Headphones, I use my phone for music. I also always keep my passports (I have a US and French) in case I need to go somewhere international last minute. This happens to me a lot!
Best way to avoid jet lag:
Well, it depends which direction you are flying. To Europe, sleep as long as you can. From Europe to USA, sleep the first few hours and then force yourself to stay awake until your normal go to sleep time or even later. The more tired you are on the first night home the better.
Common misconception about riding you would like to debunk:
I always feel the sport gets a bad rap for being elitist. While I can't deny the sport is very expensive, I think the general population of professionals is far from elitist. It is a wonderful community of people passionate about horse sport and a very hardworking set of people.
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