I have to thank my family, friends, fans, and sponsors who took this journey with me and believed that I could achieve this great goal of mine. When I left London, I was accompanied by my parents who came all the way to Europe to see me race and also to see my new home in Spain. It was so nice to have my family close to me after such a major event in my life.
When I arrived in Spain, my 7-year old niece had a welcome sign on the door to our house for me that read, “Welcome to the best worldwide cyclist, Shelley Olds. Win or lose you are always our Shelley and we love you.”
This, and the hundreds of messages I received from people all over the World and from all the places I have been, inspire me to keep working hard. I will not give up on my dreams and I will not stop believing in myself. The key to success in sport is to truly love what you do, smile when you do it, and to have a lot of love in your life. This experience showed me that what I do for a living makes the people I love both happy and proud. And this is the inspiration I use to keep fighting.
The best thing that came of my Olympic experience was the gift I received from my new friends and training partners in Spain. We have a group of about 30 guys and girls who meet and ride together all the time. Every one of them has helped me in some way. It is already a gift for me to have them to train with.
“Operation London” was the training program they all did with me for the Olympics. We raced together locally, sprinted against each other in training, raced up the climbs, pace-lined, practiced leading out sprints , and endlessly attacked one another. Here’s a picture of the gift they had for me when I arrived home from London.
And on the back, it was full of signatures from all of them.
Each one of them allowed me to push beyond my limits every day in training. They never let me quit. This made the preparation for London fun and it is an experience that I will never forget. I give thanks for all of them, and all of my friends, fans, family, and sponsors as the journey continues with my pursuit of Olympic Gold in Rio 2016.
Thanks for reading ~Shelley