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But the depth and the texture, I guess, of that experience is different. I had always known that my career would be kind of a launching pad into many different entrepreneurial activities and I’ve never been one to sit back and relax.I’ve always been on the go, very hungry for more and it’s been amazing.So this morning, I was down at Rockefeller just talking to some of my old teammates, it’s a camaraderie, it’s a family, and it’s a respect and honor, very humbling.
The Olympic Games is powerful, it goes and crosses any border, any color, any predisposed belief and system and it really is about those two and three weeks of pure celebration. CC: AO: My favorite part of the Games is…being an athlete there are many different parts…but the one I really love is just the fact the Olympic Games is an accumulation of all these athletes' incredible hard work and they’re competing against the world’s other top 1% at a chance at gold and having that gold medal.
So in my final Games in 2010, I’d gone through the process before, but I was able to appreciate it so much more, right, because I had known this was such a moment in time that somewhat freezes still for the athletes. Especially we as Americans look to these types of events, specially the Olympic Games, as being a unifying experience for all of us as Americans.
We now cheer and root for one team and that’s why the Games are so special to me because they symbolize so much more than sport.
So when you have this realization that you’ve been working for the past four years or eight years of your life toward this one specific moment that can literally change your life, it’s daunting, it’s scary, it’s exciting. AO: No, my first Games I was 18, 19 years old and it was my first Olympics in 2002 in Salt Lake City.
So I think gradually, obviously, as I got older as an athlete I was able to appreciate more, I was able to understand more of the complexities, the pressure and also the opportunity. Even just from warming up to cooling down before and after races to walking in to the Olympic Village and seeing all the other incredible athletes and the different ethnicities and cultures that kind of come into this mold once every four years, and to the host country and to feel the world's eyes are on you for that 17-day period is really special. We live in a world, and in a culture and in a society where variable change and uncertainty is kind of always there.