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Champions are not the ones who always win races - champions are the ones who get out there and try. And try harder the next time. And even harder the next time. 'Champion' is a state of mind. They are devoted. They compete to best themselves as much if not more than they compete to best others. Champions are not just athletes.
When I was 17, I worked in a mentoring program in Harlem designed to improve the community. That's when I first gained an appreciation of the Harlem Renaissance, a time when African-Americans rose to prominence in American culture. For the first time, they were taken seriously as artists, musicians, writers, athletes, and as political thinkers.
Whether we like it or not, we are high-profile athletes. We're role models. Kids come up to me all the time to talk and it makes me remember when I was a kid and I got to meet Jerry Rice and how much that meant to me. And how we've got to set a good example.
Good ideas are like Nike sports shoes. They may facilitate success for an athlete who possesses them, but on their own they are nothing but an overpriced pair of sneakers. Sports shoes don't win races. Athletes do.
I was not athletically inclined. I was very quiet, introverted, non-confrontational. My three older brothers were athletes - basketball, football - but I was kind of a momma's boy. Then one day, my brother Roger encouraged me to go to the boxing gym with him. I tried the gloves on, and it just felt so natural.
Sugar Ray Leonard
Athletes and musicians make astronomical amounts of money. People get paid $100 million to throw a baseball! Shouldn't we all take less and pass some of that money onto others? Think about firefighters, teachers and policemen. We should celebrate people that are intellectually smart and trying to make this world a better place.
You want me to own a team and deal with these rich, spoiled stubborn athletes, and try to get them to perform? No thank you.
These days the temptation to use steroids in sports has become too great for many young athletes.
Someone who wants to write should make an effort to write a little something every day. Writing in this sense is the same as athletes who practice a sport every day to keep their skills honed.
I am very proud of my mom and consider her the most courageous woman I know. With perseverance, sacrifice and hard work, she raised a family of Olympic athletes and gave us the tools and the spirit to succeed. That is something that my brothers and I will always be thankful for.
Truthfully, this is how I approach my workout: I want to be the best athlete I can possibly be. If I can out-perform some of the better athletes then I'm happy. When I look at the NFL or the NBA, these guys look how I want to look - it's useable, functional muscle.
Athletes know kids look up to them, and it's important for athletes to be responsible.
It's important that athletes can compete on a level playing field. And youngsters coming into the sport can know that if they are working hard and training hard, they'll see a true reflection of where they stand and what they can achieve worldwide and not be swayed by people who are cheating.
Young people and Indian people need to know that we existed in the 20th Century. We need to know who our heroes are and to know what we have done and accomplished in this century other than what Olympic athletes Jim Thorpe and Billy Mills have done.
Several professional athletes have wrongly taught many young Americans by example that the only way to succeed in sports is to take steroids.
Much in the way Olympic athletes optimize their game by paying an enormous - borderline maniacal - amount of attention to things like diet, exercise, sleep, and of course the essential R&R, we all would do well to pay more attention to those key aspects of our lives that comprise our overall health equation.
Had I been a great athlete, I'm not sure I would have even gone into coaching. I may have turned out feeling that my life ended when my athletic career ended, as happens so many times with various athletes.
As a coach, one thing that used to frustrate me was one player would make a bad decision, and that's all you would read about in the papers all over the country. We have so many athletes do so many wonderful things for other people, and you never read about it.
It was the Michael Jordan/Nike phenomenon that really let people see that athletes were OK, and black athletes were OK. Defying a previous wisdom - not only that black athletes wouldn't sell in white America, but that the NBA as a predominantly black sport could not sell in white America.
I always believed I was an ugly duckling in a family of swans, you know? I was such a black sheep, and it was the same way in high school... I was just kind of that awkward theater kid with a bunch of athletes... it was very 'Glee.'
I think exercise tests us in so many ways, our skills, our hearts, our ability to bounce back after setbacks. This is the inner beauty of sports and competition, and it can serve us all well as adult athletes.
In cross-country skiing, athletes propel themselves over distances of ten and twenty miles - a physical challenge that places intense demands on the ability of their red blood cells to deliver oxygen to their muscles.
I'm the world's expert on sterotypes held by academics about athletes and held by athletes about academics. To me, both of them are caricatures.
A. Bartlett Giamatti
The pro athlete is a sad tale. He signs a big contract and thinks he's set for life. I didn't think I was set for life, and I don't now. As athletes, we are important, celebrities, in demand and rich. Then we are out of the game and we are not important, not celebrities, not in demand and not rich.
Well, I do feel that I carry the responsibility of representing my country wherever I am, and this responsibility came with the success that I had in last couple of years, not just myself but the whole group of tennis players that comes from Serbia. And athletes in general are, in this moment, the biggest ambassadors that our country has.
John F. Kennedy
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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