Look Ahead and Prepare

In this week’s Women’s History Month profile, we recognize Jackie Joyner-Kersee, who was named by Sports Illustrated as the best female athlete of the 20th century.  She’s a four-time Olympian (winner of three gold, one silver and two bronze medals) in the sport of track and field, and an advocate for fitness.  Jackie shares this powerful thought about being proactive:

“It is better to look ahead and prepare than to look back and regret.”

Jackie’s longevity in the sport of track and field demonstrates her commitment to looking ahead.  She never rested on her past achievements.  Instead, she pursued continuous improvement, beating several personal and world records in the heptathlon, a sport that requires a diverse skill set since it’s actually a series of SEVEN events!  Remarkably, nearly 27 years later, her 1988 record stands unbroken.  Jackie tenaciously attempted to make the Olympics again in 2000 at the age of 38.  Today, Jackie continues to inspire other athletes as a board member of the USA Track & Field Organization and a founding member of Athletes for Hope.

We can all learn from Jackie when it comes to taking care of ourselves. There are no surefire ways to prevent breast cancer—though we passionately wish there were—but there are a number of healthy habits all women can pursue to reduce individual risk:

1. Maintain a healthy weight
2. Stay physically active
3. Eat fruits and vegetables
4. Do not smoke
5. Limit alcohol consumption

However, for the one in eight women who will be diagnosed with breast cancer, the best way to fight breast cancer is to have a plan that helps detect the disease in its early stages. Look ahead and prepare by creating your own Early Detection Plan today.

Sources: http://jackiejoynerkersee.com/, http://www.biography.com/people/jackie-joyner-kersee-9358710#synopsis

Photo credit: Annie Leibovitz

Black History Month: Celebrating Jackie Joyner-Kersee

As we celebrate Black History Month, let’s recall the stunning athletic and physical accomplishments of Jackie Joyner-Kersee.

In 1990, Sports Illustrated named Jackie Joyner-Kersee the greatest female athlete of the 20th Century.

At that time, no one challenged the Sports Illustrated bold proclamation. Since then, no female athlete has come close to rivaling Joyner-Kersee’s brilliant athleticism.

Joyner-Kersee remains the most decorated female track and field Olympian ever. Her incredible point total in the heptathlon may never be surpassed.

An athletic prodigy from St. Louis, MO, Joyner-Kersee’s basketball ability enabled her to earn a scholarship to UCLA. Jackie starred for the Lady Bruins and graduated in 1985 with an impressive 1,167 career points.

However, basketball would not be the reason why Sports Illustrated acknowledged her athletic greatness just five years later. Following her graduation from UCLA, track and field consumed Jackie’s life and propelled her to international stardom.

Ironically, an old movie galvanized her interest in a tremendously challenging, but mostly unheralded, track and field event. The 1975 film about legendary sports star Babe Didrikson Zaharias inspired Joyner-Kersee to catalyze her superb athleticism in the heptathlon.

Following her college basketball career, Jackie devoted her time to master this grueling sport comprised of seven individual events: the 110m hurdles, 200m dash, 800m run, shot put, javelin throw, high jump and long jump.

As evidenced by her famous quote, “It is better to look ahead and prepare than to look back and regret,” Jackie Joyner-Kersee had no regrets when competing on the track. She prepared expertly and excelled at both the long jump and the heptathlon. At one time, she held world records in both sports. Her 7,291 points in the heptathlon may never be broken.

Jackie’s unrivaled athleticism enabled her to capture Olympic gold medals in 1988 in Seoul in the long jump and heptathlon and in 1992 in Barcelona in the heptathlon. She won three more Olympic medals (one silver and two bronze) in addition to winning four gold medals (two in the long jump and two in the heptathlon) in the Track and Field World Championships in 1987 and 1991.

The 5'10" and 150 lb. Joyner-Kersee’s most incredible feat may not have been her dominance in the long jump and heptathlon. Her biggest accomplishment may have been her courage and resolve to excel as a world class athlete while overcoming the debilitating medical condition known as exercise induced asthma.

Wow! That’s a noteworthy accomplishment for a woman who can confidently look back on her career with no regrets. She’s also featured in my book Favorite Female Athletes.

Jackie Joyner-Kersee always looked forward. She carefully prepared for whatever shoe sought to do and emerged victoriously. Not only is she recognized as an amazing athlete. She’s also known as an inspiring role model who refused to allow exercise induced asthma to deter her from becoming, as Sports Illustrated chronicled, the greatest female athlete of the 20th Century.

MIKE on sports!

Jacqueline “Jackie” Joyner-Kersee is known as the most decorated female athlete in Olympic Track and Field history. The now retired American athlete won three gold, one silver, and two bronze Olympic Medals. Today she is a dedicated advocate for children’s education, health issues, racial equality, social reform and women’s rights. Written By: University at Buffalo PGS Ambassador Kayla, 19 (@kayla.alyak ) #UB #motivation #PGSBuffalo #Smile #PrettyGirlsSweat #Believe #Sweatspiration #SweatSisterhood #PrettyGirlsSweat #PGS #BlackHistoryMonth #BHM #JackieJoynerKersee

#Repost @becauseofthem

Jackie Joyner-Kersee is a retired track and field star. She is considered one of the greatest athletes of all time. In 1988, she became the first American to win an Olympic gold medal for the long jump and the first woman to earn more than 7,000 points in the heptathlon. During her career, she won three Olympic gold medals, one silver and two bronze medals. What makes her accomplishments more remarkable is that she did all of the above while battling severe asthma.

Day 22 of 28 Days, 28 Photos - Celebrating Black History Month!

Please Share + Like Because of Them We Can by Eunique Jones to follow along and celebrate heroes, past and present, who have paved the way! #becauseofthemwecan #28photos28days #blackhistorymonth #jackiejoynerkersee

Olympic Gold Medalist Jackie Joyner-Kersee, visited our church on yesterday during church anniversary. We were temporarily using her facility, The Jackie Joyner-Kersee Center, for church until our pastor announced on yesterday that they have found us a church building as our permanent home.

#church #JJK #JackieJoynerKersee #GodsBlessings #vcstl (at Jackie Joyner-Kersee Center)

THROWBACK THURSDAY | Jackie Joyner-Kersee is one of the best athletes, male or female, of all time. She was born in 1962 in St. Louis, Illinois where she was a track & field athlete during her high school career. It was her success in basketball, however, that earned her a full scholarship to UCLA. She was an all-around star athlete who gained popularity from coaches on campus! Under track & field coach Bob Kersee, whom she later married in 1986, Joyner-Kersee won the 1982 and 1983 NCAA heptathlon as well as a silver medal at the Olympics a year later. She became the first woman to score 7,000 points in the seven-event heptathlon! During the 1988 summer Olympics she earned a gold medal for setting the world record in that event. She also became the first American woman to win a gold medal in the long jump! After winning a gold and a bronze medal in the 1992 Olympics, Joyner-Kersee was named world athlete of the year in 1995. Jackie Joyner-Kersee officially retired from track & field in 2001. She went on to establish the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Youth Center Foundation to help children in her hometown of St. Louis! In 2012, she joined the board of the USA track and field organization. Joyner-Kersee’s brother, Al Joyner was the husband of the late great Florence Griffith Joyner (Flo Jo). Who knew?! The Joyners, the Griffiths, the Kersees: a marriage of track & field nobility! #prettygirlssweat #tt #throwbackthursday #pgs #sweatspiration #sweat #track #fitness #olympics #fitspo #fitspiration #JackieJoynerKersee

Day 8: “Having been named by Sports Illustrated as the ‘Greatest Female Athlete of the 20th Century’, Jackie Joyner-Kersee’s athletic credentials are unquestionably among the best ever, in all of sport. A six time Olympic medalist, including three Olympic gold medals, Joyner-Kersee dominated the Olympic heptathlon and long jump events throughout her career which spanned four Olympic Games. Astonishingly, despite the advancements in technology and training used by athletes around the world over the last two decades, Jackie Joyner-Kersee still holds the World Heptathlon Record she set over 20 years ago at the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, Korea.” As told by ESPN. #BlackFemaleAthlete #JackieJoynerKersee #TrackNation #blackhistorymonth #photochallenge

#BlackHistoryMonth: Jacqueline “Jackie” Joyner-Kersee (born March 3, 1962) is a retired American athlete, ranked among the all-time greatest athletes in the women's heptathlon as well as in the women's long jump. She won three gold, one silver, and two bronze Olympic medals, in those four different events. Sports Illustrated for Women magazine voted Joyner-Kersee the Greatest Female Athlete of the 20th century.