Lindsey Vonn knows what it is to face adversity. Despite a torrent of injuries that put her skiing career in jeopardy over the years (including a knee injury that left her unable to compete at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi), Vonn took home the bronze medal in alpine skiing at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang last month.
In an exclusive interview with SheKnows, Vonn reflected on her ability to bounce back no matter the odds and prove that women are just as strong as men.
Lindsey Vonn: I tried to keep a positive outlook and to stay determined and focused on my goals. It can be difficult when you face injury or other major challenges, but keeping your goal in mind and pushing yourself to never give up in order to achieve that goal is really what keeps me going.
LV: I was incredibly emotional during my final race for so many reasons, but mostly because I was racing for my grandpa. I wanted to perform my best and close out my Olympic journey on a high note for him.
SK: What’s it really like living at the Olympic Village? Any fun stories or facts that you can share?
LV: I haven’t stayed in the Olympic Village since 2002, when I was 17. There’s definitely always a lot going on there with all athletes from all different sports. The time I did spend there was cool because it’s really the only place you all come together outside of a competition, but this time around, I stayed elsewhere. I have my dog Lucy with me, who recently starred in a Bounty commercial with me. She’s the best traveling companion and keeps me focused in between all of the craziness.
LV: I don’t think I’ve experienced as much inequality as a lot of other athletes have faced, which I’m thankful for, but I do see the trend of female empowerment around the world beyond sport, and I think that’s a really positive and much-needed change.
LV: That we’re not as tough or strong as the guys — that’s simply not true!
LV: Anything is possible as long as you give it your best and never give up. That’s really what the Olympics are all about.
LV: In sport, I definitely look up to Billie Jean King and Serena Williams. They’ve both revolutionized sport for women in so many different ways and have truly exemplified what it means to be strong, competitive females.
Grateful to have represented my country one last time in the Olympics. It’s been an amazing journey and I couldn’t be happier or more proud. Now it’s time to break one more record before I close out my career; catch Ingemar Stenmark’s World Cup win record. He has 86 wins and I have 81...I will keep fighting for that last dream. I love you all. Goodnight #nevergiveup
LV: Keep working hard, keep going. You’ll hit hurdles and experience your fair share of pain, but everything will work out the way it is supposed to!
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