Sunday, January 6th was our first day back to Gustavus after Christmas break. Olympic athlete Kris Kuehl came to talk to the class and we watched a documentary on the Ancient Olympics. Kuehl answered what it means to her to be a modern day Olympian. From her perspective the Olympics are meaningful because of the diversity of the event, opportunity to travel, and to see how great you can be. Kuehl decided to pursue the Olympics because she had the talent, the opportunity and nobody ever discouraged her from following her dream. Her event was women’s discus and she was top ten in the world with a throw of 214 feet. There were several security check ins that athletes had to go through in order to enter into the Olympic facilities. This made things somewhat inconvenient because they would have to get there really early before the time of their event. In the Olympics for women’s discus, athletes are only allowed two practice throws and they cannot have their own implement. We talked about how some athletes use drugs in order to better their careers. Athletes are drug tested randomly throughout the year whether they are training or not. Urine samples are kept so that they can be tested at later dates for newer drugs that the test wouldn’t catch the first time around. Olympians can be stripped of their medal(s) if they were found to be doping. She retired because it wasn’t as fun anymore, she didn’t think she could throw any farther and she had a number of injuries. By being an Olympian she gained confidence and learned to adapt to challenging life situations. Today, she is a physical therapist which is a career that she found through the Olympics.
Caroline Olson, Kayla Traetow, Sara Welch