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Petra Majdic proves perseverance pays

Petra Majdic - motivation through perseverance. 2010 Olympic Games - Petra Majdic shows her mettle. Image from topnews.in

Cross Country Sprint star Petra Majdic, from Slovenia, was favored to win Wednesday’s gold medal finals at the 2010 Winter Olympic games at Whistler.

That is, until she suffered a terrible accident during a warm-up early Wednesday. Her skis caught a patch of ice on a downhill slope. She fell nine feet into a gully off the side of the track.


Petra Majdic falls in 2010 Winter Olympics

When she fell, she broke both poles, one ski, four ribs, and punctured her lung.

But what did she do next?

Petra Majdic climbs out to win the bronze

She climbed out of the gully and went on to race four times, including the opening round, the quarter finals, the semi-finals, and the finals.

And she didn’t just compete, she won the bronze medal.

Shortly after the awards ceremony, which she attended in a wheelchair, she went back to the hospital for treatment. They say she’ll be there for some time recovering from the wounds.

Already heralded as a true champion in Slovenia (her’s marks their fifth Olympic Winter Games medal in Slovenia’s history), she will return as a giant. As well she should.

She’s a giant in my eyes.

Her teammate, Barbara Jezersek, said, “She won’t compete again, because the injury is too bad. What she did was something amazing. She wanted to get a medal, and she did. She is like a hero now in Slovenia. She has really strong will to compete. The coach tell her to stop skiing because of injury. But she was too strong. She wouldn’t listen.”

Canmore, Alberta’s Sara Renner said, “It was phenomenal. She was in so much pain. Her crash was horrific. The fact she pulled off a bronze medal… she was digging into something superhuman there. I can’t imagine how she was able to do it.”

Neither can I. But in watching her do it, I learned something important. I learned that when you want something badly enough, when you’re intensely focused on achieving your goal, you can see past enormous barriers and endure enormous pains. It’s a lesson of willpower, which Petra proved is strong enough to overcome nearly anything.

Thank you, Petra, for your example and strength. Your greatness and perseverance are inspiring.


Other inspiring Olympic stories:

Lindsey Vonn - olympic effort, and hard work is key to achieving your goals and dreams
Lindsey Vonn – she didn’t start out the fastest; she wasn’t the most naturally gifted. But she started small, persevered, and through a crazy amount of hard work has become the most successful female skier in World Cup history.
motivation from the faces of 2010 Vancouver olympic champions
I’m constantly inspired by the photos of Olympic champions in the moment of their success—expressions that encapsulate the culmination of years of hard work, living their dream and achieving their goals.
2010 Olympic Highlight - Seth Wescott
Seth Wescott wins the gold; six weeks ago he couldn’t even walk. Overcoming injury, the worst-possible starting gate, and an unthinkable gap that left him in last place through most of the race, he kept his focus, believed in himself, and succeeded. Read his story.
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