Olympic Gold Medalist, Diving 1972
My summer 2009 was pretty special. I knew I planned this summer pretty tight, lots of travel and time on the road. But as fall hits now and I look back, WOW. My summer was incredible.
INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC ACADEMY (IOA): I was selected as the USA representative to the IOA for a one week academic session at the IOA campus in Olympia Greece. The IOA mission is to bring Olympians world wide together in a spirit of friendship and cooperation. The awesome setting just steps away from the site of the ancient Olympics is incredibly moving and is now one of my personal “forever” memories. I’ll remember the fascinating mix of Olympians I met from 23 countries. This academic campus was like a mini Olympic Village, but as competitors at the Games, we are too focused to get to know, really know, other athletes. The week at the IOA campus was designed especially to find out about each other and share our passionate stories and Olympic experiences. I’ll never forget this special week.
NATIONAL SENIOR GAMES (NSG): Then within 10 days of my visit to Greece, I headed to Palo Alto, California and added another unforgettable week to my summer at the National Senior Games. This is a huge event held every two years in a different city and attended by 10,000 plus athletes 50 years old and up who compete in 20 plus sports ranging from archery to track; basketball and bowling to shuffleboard and tennis – and lots more in-between. I was there with several Olympians who gave clinics, panel discussions plus doing autograph and photo sessions. As I watched the various competitions in so many different sports, I was very touched by the senior athletes’ exhibition of athleticism, fitness, competiveness, and healthy lifestyle. I saw 75 year old gals high jumping (yes) and two 90 year olds playing tennis. No kidding. After such an exhilarating week, I’m now inspired to be a participant, not a watcher, at the next NSG!!
CHICAGO 2016 OLYMPIC BID: I spent the remaining summer visiting Chicago several times to participate in the Chicago bid to host the 2016 Games. Rio de Janiero was selected over Chicago as everyone knows. But, I must say the Windy City proved to me at least, they had an outstanding plan in place. I feel sad for all my friends in Chicago who spent three years consumed with the goal to win this bid. They lost to a fine city. But, at the end of an otherwise inspirational summer,, I’m still sad about the Olympic bid.
Now, with summer over, I’m excited to turn my attention to WORLD FIT® as I will introduce it to my home town of Lexington, Kentucky in Spring 2010. We are a mid-size college town that talks allot about fitness, but that’s mostly what it is – just talk. WORLD FIT® is action and I can’t wait to get the kids of my town “off and walking.”