8.07.2009

Nastia Liukin Just Won't Quit

Nastia Liukin just won't quit. She has 14 World and Olympic Medals, 5 of them from the most recent 2008 Beijing Olympics. She is the reigning Olympic All Around Champion which is the dream come true of any Elite Gymnast. She has endorsements up the yin yang to the point where she is pretty much a millionaire. She has all kinds of amazing opportunities being handed to her right and left. Her entire year after the Olympics were a whirlwind of appearances, star studded events, photo shoots and travel. And yet...she returns to the gym. Back to the blood, sweat, tears, and pain. Back to 6 hours of training 6 days a week at the gym where it all started. At the age of 20 in a sport where girls are considered practically over the hill veteran by age 18. In a sport where whether or not you continue depends upon if your body will hold up to the pounding. Gymnastics is hard. Injuries, surgeries, and working out with pain is all part of the package and yet she just can't get enough. I cannot even imagine having all of the discipline and dedication to deal with all of that day in and day out. How does she find the motivation when she has already achieved so much? She has already spent a lifetime in the gym and she wants to go back when most Olympic All Around Champions take their gold medals and run.

Going into the Olympics she wasn't even truly the favorite due to injury, "age", and the hot shot dynamo Shawn Johnson who was winning everything in site leading up to the main event. She fell all over the place at 07 Nationals and placed second to Shawn in 08. Nastia would not be denied. She kept fighting and her determination paid off. I was rooting for her. I favor artistry over raw power in gymnastics. Nastia is absolutely beautiful on every event. Breathtaking. She makes acrobatics that should not be humanly possible look easy. You can't take a bad picture of her. I am in awe of her talent. She was clearly born to do this. All you have to do is take one look at her in action to see that and I am thrilled to get to do just that again. She is only focusing on two events to start out but the sky really is the limit for her. The road to London 2012 starts with USA Nationals August 12Th in Dallas and with the heart of a champion Nastia is leading the charge.



Click here for another great Nastia video that illustrates her determination and beauty over the years. I absolutely get goose bumps just from watching it.

Read article: Nastia On October 2009 Worlds
News | Inside Gymnastics Magazine

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The Women's All Around portion of the 2009 US Nationals will be televised on Saturday August 15th on NBC.


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