Few moments in my life have been as stressful as my senior year of high school. I was juggling AP classes, applying for colleges, studying for final exams, and generally trying to figure out what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. On top of all that I was attempting to have a social life and enjoy my last year at home before moving into a dorm. My list of stressors was fairly average, all things considered.

Gymnast Laurie Hernandez, on the other hand, is dealing with all the stress high school brings, plus a few other time-consuming (but exciting!) projects. At only 17, she’s already won two Olympic medals in women’s gymnastics at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio and she won season 23 of Dancing With the Stars with her partner Val Chmerkovskiy. Even more impressive, she’s remained incredibly down to earth and isn’t afraid of working hard to achieve her goals. To say she’s fabulous is an understatement.

Spoon: What was your diet like while training for the Olympics?

Laurie Hernandez: I was eating clean and ate lots of healthy foods. I’d take boiled eggs on the go. I mainly ate a lot of eggs, a lot of chicken and vegetables and some fish. It wasn’t so much of a diet as it was eating clean and eating foods that were good for my body.

Spoon: What’s one thing that surprised you about competing at the Olympics?

LH: How big the arena was! Walking in for the first time and seeing how tall the ceiling was and how many people were in the stands was surprising.

Spoon: What’s one food you absolutely can’t stand?

LH: Probably olives or mushrooms. Those two foods are definitely not my favorite.

Photo courtesy of Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for American Egg Board

Spoon: What’s your favorite dish to eat at home?

LH: My mom makes a really good Spanish rice. She cracks an egg on top and it makes a really good sauce on it. My mom is a really great cook!

Spoon: What’s one thing you’re great at cooking?

LH: I’m not the greatest cook out there. I’m really good at making boiled eggs and boiling water. I’m working on it! Oh, and I’m good at scrambled eggs, but that’s really it.

Spoon: How do you cope with being away from home for competitions and events?

LH: At times I do really miss my parents. But when that happens you just have to look around you and acknowledge where you are; looking back in the past and seeing how far you’ve come is important. I’ve had some incredible opportunities and I have to remember to be grateful. Oh, and FaceTime! FaceTime really helps because I can look my parents in the eyes and tell them how much I miss them.

Spoon: In previous interviews, you’ve discussed the dangers of using social media. How do you cope with negative comments on your photos?

LH: Sometimes going through photos is like a bang. Like, is this person serious? Sometimes you just have to block them out and do your best to ignore them. In reality, the words in the comment wouldn’t be said to your face so you have to move on. Sometimes you have to read all the comments and just acknowledge the positive ones.

Spoon: Have you ever dealt with low self-esteem? If so, how did you deal with it?

LH: There are moments even now when you can feel uncomfortable with yourself and it puts you in a bad position. At the end of the day, you have only yourself. If you can take a step back and listen to music you like, try and accept that you have yourself for the rest of your life. I have to tell myself that I love me and who I am and I can’t wait to grow more as a person.

Spoon: What’s the accomplishment you’re proudest of?

LH: The Olympics and Dancing With the Stars. The Olympics because that’s something I worked 11 years for, and it’s an honor to know it paid off and to have that moment. Dancing With the Stars was also something I wanted to do. My dad once said, “Hey, someday you’ll be on that show!” I thought he was crazy, but a year later he was proven right.

Spoon: What’s the most valuable piece of advice you’ve been given?

LH: I have to give credit to two people here, one being my dance partner [Val Chmerkovskiy]. He told me, “Look, I understand this is a reality show, but I just want to make sure you sit and be grateful and look at how far you’ve come. A lot of people would love to be here, and I want to make sure you’re embracing every moment.”

The other person is my mom. She told me that, “You get to do the things you’ve loved from a very young age, and that’s great. But it’s also important to help other people who don’t have what you do.” And that’s something that’s really stuck with me.

Spoon: What do you want to study in college?

LH: College is definitely in the picture. I’m looking forward to acting, that’s a really big passion of mine. But it may not work out, so we’re looking into other options, but I’m going to fight for acting.

Up next for Laurie is finishing high school and working towards the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. While I’m no gymnastics expert, I have a funny feeling we’ll be seeing a lot more of her in the future. In the meantime, we’ll just have to make due with scrolling through her Instagram feed to see what she’s up to.