Inspirational Olympic Athlete Quotes


By Susan Schilke; May 2, 2016

The Olympics return this summer, and I look forward to evenings of inspiration as I watch the amazing feats of our athletes, and athletes from all over the world.  This year, we bring the Olympic theme to the TeamStrength Leadership Workshop 2016 with keynote speaker, gold medalist and NBC Commentator, Rowdy Gaines.  In the meantime, here are some quotes from other past gold medalists:

“We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort.”
–Jesse Owens, USA track and field gold medalist

“If you fail to prepare, you’re prepared to fail.”
–Mark Spitz, USA gold medalist in swimming

“I am building a fire, and every day I train, I add more fuel. At just the right moment, I light the match.”
–Mia Hamm, gold medalist in women’s football

“Breathe, believe, and battle.’ My former coach, Troy Tanner, told us that before each match. Breathe—be in the moment. Believe—have faith that you can rise above it. Battle—you gotta be prepared to go for as long as it takes.”
-Kerri Walsh, two-time beach volleyball Olympic gold medalist

“As simple as it sounds, we all must try to be the best person we can: by making the best choices, by making the most of the talents we’ve been given.”
–Mary Lou Retton, US gold medalist in gymnastics

“Never underestimate the power of dreams and the influence of the human spirit. We are all the same in this notion: The potential for greatness lives within each of us.”
–Wilma Rudolph, USA gold medalist in track and field

“Focus, discipline, hard work, goal setting and, of course, the thrill of finally achieving your goals. These are all lessons in life.”
–Kristi Yamaguchi, gold medalist in figure skating

“Falling in life is inevitable—staying down is optional.”
-Carrie Johnson, two-time Olympic kayaker

“If you don’t have confidence, you’ll always find a way not to win.”
–Carl Lewis, USA gold medalist in track and field

“Nothing can substitute for just plain hard work.”
–Andre Agassi, gold medalist in tennis in 1996

“I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
–Michael Jordan, gold medalist in basketball in 1992 and 1984


“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.”
–Muhammad Ali, gold medalist in boxing in 1960