An athlete gains so much knowledge by just participating in a sport. Focus, discipline, hard work, goal setting and, of course, the thrill of finally achieving your goals. These are all lessons in life.
Every day, someone realizes a dream. I believe dreams help light our darkness and give us the push we need to move across the rink of life.
I don't know how many people really knew who I was before the Olympics and that's the fun thing of the Olympics - you get to know someone who captures your heart, hopefully.
I'd try to channel my nervous energy in a positive way into strength and endurance. It didn't always work.
At 6 years old, the ice became a place for me to express myself. Because I was so shy off the ice, it became my safe haven, with music and freedom and self-expression. That was my emotional outlet.
I learned to put 100 percent into what you're doing. I learned about setting goals for yourself, knowing where you want to be and taking small steps toward those goals. I learned about adversity and how to get past it.
I've realized how precious life is. When I was younger, I was more adventurous. I felt invincible. I was game for everything. As a mom, I don't want to get injured because then I can't take care of my kids.
I'm always looking for inspiring ways to stay motivated and stay active.
Once you have a child, your heart is forever outside your body. I totally understand that now.
Being an athlete, you know how to train and prepare your body for a performance and you're able to do it under pressure.
I always try to start out with some type of goal. Then I work backward and think of what I need to do to get there, and give myself smaller goals that are more immediate
Now, I am thrilled to be a wife and mother, and I hope to be as good of a mother as my own mother, Carole.
Childhood reading is so important.
There are two or three performances in your life that are absolutely on, where all the planets are lined up for you and you feel you're invincible.
Training for the Olympics was a lifelong endeavor and took many years.
I never wanted to feel I hadn't worked hard enough.
I feel like I missed out on the regular high school social life, but that's the way I chose to be.
As a teenager especially, I just wanted to do my thing and not be noticed.
Probably a few weeks after I was born I started having casts put on my legs to straighten them out. After that corrective shoes and with a brace in between.
The skaters a lot of times do their own hair and makeup before they compete. That was always kind of a ritual...that calming, quiet time where you can just do your hair and makeup. And then I would always lace up my right skate before my left one.
Figure skaters have awful perceptions of hockey players.
With 30,000 deaths and 200,000 hospitalizations from the seasonal flu, those numbers are certainly higher than what we've seen of the swine flu. Protecting yourself from both viruses is very important.
Before turning pro, I would never have just left my skates sitting in the locker room unattended.
In terms of my career, having the gold definitely changed my life. The Olympics are different, you know? They're every four years and it's such a small group.
I don't mind the sparkle - I think it's kind of a tradition in skating. I don't think the men really need sparkles, but for the women it's part of the glamour of our sport.
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