Olympic fever

27 Jul

Yay! The Summer Olympic Games are here. I LOVE the Olympics. I love the athletes, I love the competition, I love the opening ceremony – basically I love everything about the Games. You can bet I’ll be tuned in and watching closely to see how the United States does overall.

I tried to explain to Sebastian why I’m so excited about the Olympics (he doesn’t quite understand my enthusiasm). For me, it’s about the unique stories behind each athlete and the opportunity to watch a variety of sports. Sure, we have 24-hour sports channels like ESPN, but usually they promote the major sports leagues (the ones they’re financially invested in). This means we get to watch football, basketball, baseball, auto racing, golf, hockey and tennis. I like some of these sports, but where is the variety? This is why I love the Olympics.

My favorite sport to watch is swimming. I’m always amazed by the pure power and stamina of the swimmers. Some of my other favorites include gymnastics, track and field, beach volleyball and of course soccer.

Here are just some of the athletes I’ll be following during the games:

Missy Franklin (U.S.A.)

This girl is awesome. I watched her swim in the Olympic trials, and I’m so excited to watch her again. At 17 years old, she is one of the best young swimmers in the world (won her first world title at age 16). Plus, she’s so darn likeable. She will compete in seven events in London, making her the first U.S. female to swim that many races at the Olympics.

Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte (U.S.A.)

If you live in America and haven’t heard of Michael Phelps, you probably live under a rock. Phelps holds the record for the most gold medals won in a single Olympics (he won eight gold medals at the 2008 Beijing games) and is arguably the best swimmer of all time. Another swimmer getting a lot of attention this year is Ryan Lochte. For one, the guy is incredibly good-looking, but he’s also a great swimmer. He’s a six-time Olympic medalist who specializes in the backstroke and individual medley. In addition to swimming other events, the two will compete against one another in the 200- and 400-meter individual medleys in London.

The U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team

They took second place in the 2011 Women’s World Cup, but they’re ready to win it all at the Games. With players like Abby Wambach, Hope Solo and Alex Morgan, I have high hopes they’ll take home the gold. They already defeated France 4-2 in the Open Group G Play. Want to learn more about these amazing women? Check out my friend Stephanie’s blog.

Oscar Pistorius (South Africa)

His nickname is Blade Runner, after his prosthetic legs, and his story is quite amazing. A double-amputee, he fought and earned the right to compete in the able-bodied events in London. He is the first amputee to compete in track and field at an Olympics.

Usain Bolt (Jamaica)

No arguing here, he is the fastest man in the world. Bolt took the games by storm in 2008, winning gold and setting world records in the 100 meter, 200 meter and 4×100 meter relays. Since then, he’s won five world titles and lowered his world records in all three events. I’ll be watching to see if he can break his records again.

Kerri Walsh and Misty May Treanor (U.S.A.)

I love watching this duo play beach volleyball, and who wouldn’t? They’re an awesome pair, and it’s so much fun to see them work together. They took home gold at both the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games, and it’s quite possible they’ll do it again this year.

Cheers to all the athletes! I’ll be watching. Will you?

images via

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