I am officially calling day 13 of the Olympics, “Women’s Day.” How exciting was yesterday? Even if you have not been following the Games or don’t really like sports, you have to appreciate how the women competed and represented for all females, period.
However, I'll give one guy a shout out today: Here's to Usain Bolt! Bolt is just that, a lightning bolt. He's got unbelievable speed and athleticism, and he officially became the first man to repeat as an Olympic gold medalist in the 100- and 200-meter runs yesterday. He was absolutely amazing and made it look effortless. Congratulations, Usain! Your gold medals are well-deserved.
Now on to the real SHEROS of the day. First, we had 17-year old U. S. boxer Claressa Shields becoming the first woman to win Olympic middleweight title by defeating Russian boxer Nadezda Torlopova 19-12 to bring home the gold. Next, after 12 long years of not winning gold, the U.S. women’s water polo team (led by the youngest player on the team, Maggie Stefens) defeated Spain 8-5 to finally get their gold, with Stefens scoring five of the team’s goals.
Also, why did it take me so long to start watching soccer? Is it me or are these women phenomenal? As a former athlete and three-time Olympian, I know the stress and demand that sport entails, and I must say, these women have given me a whole new appreciation of what it means to be in great physical shape. After the USA’s overtime game with Canada a couple of days ago, everyone was wondering if the team would have anything left in the tank. I can assure you that not one player on the team was worried about that. When you're about to play the game of your life in front of millions of people and have an opportunity to bring home the gold, there's no better situation to be in as an athlete. From the very beginning of the game, I was glued to the tube. Not to take anything away from any player, but Carli Lloyd was sensational in the win today. I was amazed at the way she moved and attacked Japan from the onset of the game. And the save by Hope Solo? Spectacular! It takes a real woman to be able to stand there solo (I couldn't resist!) knowing you are about to take the other team's best shot all night long. At the end of the day though, it was a total team effort and a beautiful thing to watch.
All of these women represented the USA well and showed just how strong, competitive, tough, gritty, and beautiful women really can be. Like Beyonce’s song says, “Who Run the World”? Girls!