Concentration is why some athletes are better than others. You develop that concentration in training and concentrate in a meet.
I always had to keep improving my skills in order to remain competitive and keep winning.
I don't really see the hurdles. I sense them like a memory.
You have to have already convinced yourself that you are going to win no matter what other influences are.
There are so many people afraid of a task. They get so overwhelmed by the obstacles in front of them that they shy away from reaching beyond a position of safety.
I never struggled with injury problems because of my preparation - in particular my stretching.
I ran my first race the end of March, 1976. And less than four months later I was Olympic champion. But I had the background. It's not like I just ran one day and all of a sudden became a champion. It was a lot of work.
No one runs fast without an extreme amount of training. Like today, you see kids walking around dribbling a basketball. I had a bag with track shoes in it, and I used to go to the track every day.
I used biomechanics to save time when I was competing.
My father was also a principal of a school and mother was a curriculum advisor. Both were educators.
In digital world, sport provides opportunity to bring people together.
I overcame size with mechanics.
One of my major competitors was Harold Smith. Smith beat me in 1977. I was loafing during that competition.
I wanted to go to medical school. But, I never got a college scholarship.
Both parents supported my becoming a world class athlete.
I always got my work done before playing.
Stretching was a major part of my preparation.
Social ills: teenage pregnancy, gangs, children with behavioral problems. All these things can be alleviated if kids got more physical activity for starters.
I didn't get an athletics scholarship at a major school.
Lots of people let it go by and never accomplish what they want. I just wanted to see what I could do.
I was always a mean and lean athlete - not tall - not large.
I was always more of an academic than a jock.
The joint lubrication was not what it was when I was competing, and I decided that not having arthritis or rheumatism for the rest of my life was a lot more important to me than returning to the track.
I went to Moorehouse College. There was no track and field there.
My father was an all-American football player.
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