At the Olympics, everything is magnified four times because they only come around once every four years. In the 1996 Olympics, American runner Michael Johnson welcomed all the various personal and corporate pressures that came upon him in the 1996 Olympics. exercise physiologist salary Behind the gold shoes, Nike and Coca-Cola sponsors, and Superman confidence was a mortal with a pumping heart, a well-tuned fight-or-flight system and, apparently, psychological and emotional needs.
I crave the pressure, Johnson said. The higher the stakes, the better I am. The big races put me in the zone, where I’m more focused and aggressive. Johnson had lots to prove to the track world, and to himself, after missing out on an individual gold medal in the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona. I have always been afraid of ending my career without having won an individual gold medal, he said.
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Johnson admitted it took some time for him to realize that pressure can be good for an athlete. If there is one thing that will really take you to another level of performance to the plateau where your victories are measured in the blink of milliseconds it might be the ability to embrace pressure, to understand it, to draw it in, to make it your own and use it to your advantage, he said. I know that probably sounds nuts. We’ve been trained to think of pressure as the enemy, the unfair burden that holds us down.
In Atlanta, Johnson finally won the gold in his first of two races, the 400 meters, which increased the pressure for the 200 meters a few days later because no Olympic male had ever won both the 200 and 400 in the same Games. To make things worse, Carl Lewis, whom Johnson had seen as a rival to media attention, won his ninth gold medal in the long jump. In the 200-meter semi-finals, Johnson lost to his chief rival, Frankie Fredericks of Namibia, but both qualified for the finals. So Johnson, who had also lost an earlier race to Fredericks, used an emotional trigger as he lined up in the starting blocks for the 200-meter Olympic finals he envisioned himself as the underdog, then he let the cheers of 80,000 American fans well up inside him. As he readied for the starting gun, Johnson had several things in his mind, he later recalled: There was pressure from the 80,000 people there who expect you to win, not to mention having the Olympic schedule changed for you, and all the years of magazine covers, photo shoots, people calling, people calling to try to take off the pressure but just making more pressure, and the fact that Frankie and Ato Bolden (of Trinidad and Tobago) had been running really, really well. sports medicine I thought if I didn’t win this, a lot of things were going to be said that I would not want to hear.
Johnson said he let all this pressure build and then, a split second before the starter’s gun went off, a very clear thought came to him: The 200 is the one I want, this is the reason I’m here. It was the perfect final thought and it dumped a whole other ton of pressure into the mix. It was like one of my competitors coming up and hitting me. athletic trainer salary Just before the gun sounded, a tremor throbbed through the body of runner No. 2370 but it was possibly a subconscious reaction because Johnson said later he was focused only on listening for the starter’s pistol. All of Johnson’s mental, physical and emotional resources fired as the race starter: He reacted to the pistol in .16 of a second and shot down the curved track at 25 miles per hour faster than the speed limit allowed cars on streets surrounding the Olympic Stadium. Fredericks led early, but, with the crowd chanting Michael! Michael! Johnson overtook him after 80 meters, chest puffed