Exclusive Interview: Live It Like Beckham

On Newsstands August 12th, 2008

Aug 04, 2008, 01:00 ET from Men's Health

    NEW YORK, Aug. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Superstar David Beckham opens up in
 the September issue of Men's Health magazine, on newsstands August 12,
 2008, about his unique formula for success. Having reached the one year
 milestone of playing for Major League Soccer's Los Angeles Galaxy, Beckham
 reflects on bringing notoriety to "football" and to U.S. fans across the
 pond, choosing his kids over sports, the importance of training in his
 overall success, and the "madness" that constantly surrounds his family. At
 age 13, Beckham was discouraged from pursuing soccer from a teacher when he
 was told, "You'll never play for England, because you're too small and not
 strong enough." It was those words that set Beckham on a path to change the
 sport forever.
     (Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080804/NYM144 )
     Peek inside Beckham's workout regime from weight training to practice
 sessions, and learn how one of the most recognized athletes stays focused
 when game time comes.
     On juggling family and sports...
     "There is this madness around me, around my family. Without a doubt,
 out on the field is where I'm most comfortable, where I'm happiest, because
 I know what I'm doing, and I know I can do it."
     "People always ask me, 'Do you play golf?' Because a majority of
 sportsmen do. I used to play, quite a few years ago, but to be honest, I'd
 rather spend 4 hours with the kids than 4 hours on a golf course. As much
 as it can be relaxing, it's a frustrating sport. My way of relaxing is
 listening to music and spending time with the kids."
     On the growing popularity of soccer in America...
     "I never do anything where I don't believe in what I'm doing. I see
 that something could happen in U.S. soccer. That change isn't going to
 happen in a year or two. It's more of a 5-, 10-, or even 15-year plan. I
 believe in it, and I believe that in years to come, this could be one of
 the biggest sports here in America."
     On training and handling stress...
     "I'm a really bad loser. It stays with me for a while. I always take it
 quite personally when we don't win as a team or I don't win in everything
 else I do."
     "I don't worry about any other players. I've always concentrated on
 what my job is more than anything, more than how good the other team is, no
 matter who the opponent is-even off the field. If you do your job, then
 there's nothing else."
     "Preseason if where you get the stability for the rest of the season.
 I'll never perform at my highest level unless I'm 100 percent fit. That's
 one of my biggest attributes, the energy I've got on the field. For me,
 training is as important as the games."
     "My game's all about moving around the pitch. I went through a stage a
 few years ago where I lifted a lot of weights and put on about a stone
 [about 14 pounds] and ended up not being able to run."
     On his superstar status...
     "To be someone kids look up to is a great honor. What matters is how
 you carry yourself, off and on the field."
     "People always say to me, 'Why would you place yourself in a position
 where you have to put pressure on yourself?' But it's what gives me
     "I know what I'm doing," Beckham says of his fashion style.
     On what motivated his success...
     Beckham credits his father with helping him harness his focus. "Even if
 I had a great game he's always say, 'You played well, but these were the
 mistakes you made.' If I had a bad game, I'd hear all about that. When I
 was playing for Manchester United, playing something like 200 games and
 winning European Cup finals, he still wouldn't let me get away with saying,
 'I've made it.' So that's one thing I have never done and never will do."
     "You'll never play for England, because you're too small and not strong
 enough," Beckham heard these words from a soccer player at age 13, which
 led him to his professional career in "football."
     An image of the September cover of Men's Health magazine featuring
 David Beckham is available upon request.
     About Men's Health
     Men's Health is the largest men's lifestyle magazine brand in the world
 with 36 editions and a worldwide readership of 18.5 million. Published 10
 times a year in the U.S. by Rodale, Men's Health speaks to every aspect of
 a man's life, providing its readers with the latest information on health,
 fitness, fashion, nutrition, relationships, travel, gear and money. Men's
 Health was named to Adweek's "Hot List" of top-ten magazines ('04, '05);
 Advertising Age's "A-List" for general excellence ('03, '04); a Capell's
 Circulation Report "Best Newsstand Performer of the Decade" ('04) and
 top-ten "Best Performer in Circulation" for the past three consecutive
 years; as well as one of min magazine's "Most Notable Launches" of the past
 20 years. The magazine also won a National Magazine Award in the personal
 service category ('04).

SOURCE Men's Health