Nastia Liukin Does Handstand In Bathing Suit

Nastia Liukin in sheer black top with polka-dot sleeves.
Shutterstock | 2914948

Nastia Liukin was in her "natural habitat" performing a perfect handstand on the edge of a swimming pool in Costa Rica, as she's got the photos to prove it. In an Instagram carousel from April, the Olympian showed fans blissful glimpses of her tropical surroundings, with two swimsuit snaps standing testament to her athletic talents.

Read on to learn about the activities that help her stay in shape, as well as the photographs that prove they work—and don't forget to check out the 30 Top Celebrity Swimsuit Moments to become beach-ready too!

She Embraces Serenity

Liukin put her skills to the test while vacationing at the Hacienda AltaGracia resort. Although the five-time Olympic medalist and 2008 individual all-around champion really doesn't have anything to prove to anyone, fans were certainly thrilled to see her in action. Showing off her gymnast figure in a black one-piece with an open back, she balanced her body on both hands while keeping her legs perfectly stretched. On another slide, she was standing on her tiptoes on the pool's edge while taking in a splendid panorama.

"Me in my natural habitat," she wrote in the caption. Scroll through the embed above to admire her serene surroundings!

She Loves A Morning Workout

She may have been basking in a gorgeous twilight in the aforementioned pics, but the 32-year-old typically prefers a different time of day to get her stretches done. In an interview with The Cut, she specified that she likes to work out early in the morning, sharing that she knocks off her exercises at an hour when most of us are still sound asleep.

"For me, it’s really important to get a workout in as soon as I wake up because if I don’t do it then I feel like I’m not going to have a chance to do it," said Liukin, who is up by 5:30 a.m. and immediately hits the gym.

She Does Pilates

The athlete has been retired since 2012 but that doesn't mean she lets up at the gym. She maintains her gymnast figure with barre classes, hot yoga, and spinning classes, in addition to running and "boxing with my trainer." Of all the exercises she does to stay in shape, her absolute favorite is Pilates. "That really elongates you, but it’s also important to do some kind of cardio," Liukin told The Cut.

According to the Mayo Clinic, Pilates "is an accessible way to build strength in your core muscles for better posture, balance and flexibility." The clinic further explains: "Pilates can be adapted to provide a gentle strength training and stability program, or it can be modified to give a seasoned athlete a challenging workout."

She Keeps Her Fitness Routine Breezy

Now a sports broadcaster, the former artistic gymnast is still passionate about fitness but confesses to a more relaxed approach nowadays. Since hanging up the leotard, she's been sticking to fun workouts that she can balance with her schedule. "Some days that’s just getting in 20 minutes of some kind of workout, maybe it’s in my hotel room or my apartment or going for a quick jog," she said.

"Healthy adults should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week, or an equal combination of moderate and vigorous activity," notes the Mayo Clinic.

She Treats Herself Occasionally

The former athlete is keen on eating a "well-balanced" diet rich in veggies and healthy carbs (she's partial to brown rice and sweet potatoes) but that doesn't mean she'll deny herself a treat once in a while. “If you want a cookie, have a cookie,” she says. "Because then you’re going to get to a point where just, like, you want 10 cookies and you’re going to eat 10."

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