Nastia Liukin speaks to students at the University of Pennsylvania
posted on 04/22/2011

By Jennifer Scuteri - The Daily Pennsylvanian

Before the Olympics in Beijing, then-18-year-old gymnast Nastia Liukin placed three images on her vision board: the Eiffel tower to symbolize a trip to France she wanted, a BMW and the 2008 goal medal.

“You put the things you want to achieve and accomplish on it,” she said. “A few months before the Olympics they released what the Olympic medals would look like. And so I found them, I Googled them and I printed off the gold, silver and bronze.”

As students at the Social Planning and Events Committee Connaissance event in Bodek lounge learned, the 2008 all-around champion’s road to the podium wasn’t easy. Liukin shared the story of her road to winning gymnastics’ pinnacle event with a group of about 50.

“So many people have asked me what was that feeling like when you’re getting that gold medal and your country’s flag is being raised, and the National Anthem is playing and honestly in my mind, I couldn’t even think one thing straight,” Liukin said of placing first in the all-around competition.

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