Become a Champion of Life!
When Michael Phelps became the most decorated Olympian of all time, his coach told us backstage that it wasn’t Phelps’ wingspan or endurance that was the main reason for his sea of medals.
“The biggest misconception people have with Michael Phelps and other great athletes is that their physical talent is the reason they succeed,” said Bob Bowman, who has coached the Olympian for about 16 years.
“It’s the mindset, it’s the passion.”
That passion was felt all across the windy city Wednesday, as Chicago Ideas Week continued to inspire the hearts and minds of people across the world.
That afternoon Bowman spoke at the Museum of Contemporary art on Sports: The Making of a Champion before a full house.
“The energy here I think is contagious,” he said.
Chicago native Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger of Notre Dame cinema fame spoke, and prior to the event he told us he hoped to encourage the audience to find a good team of supporters in life.
“You all have a dream,” he said. ‘You’re never too old.”
Kelly Amonte-Hiller, Northwestern University’s head coach of its serial national championship women’s lacrosse team, said her program coaches its players on life as well as the sport – because you can’t be good at one without being good at the other.
Northwestern’s team has won more than half a dozen national championships under Amonte-Hiller’s coaching, and she said she wanted people to walk away from her talk realizing how hard you have to work to stay on top.
Backstage she said she was also in awe of Chicago Ideas Week and its phenomenal speakers.
“Just for me being in the green room with these other presenters has been amazing,” Amonte-Hiller said. “I try to learn from everyone I can.”