The great thing about this is, and not to pump my own tires, but I feel like I'm not maximized yet. I feel like I can still run faster, jump higher, which I think makes it special. Hopefully, going to London, I'll be welcomed into the decathlon community.
If I really felt like I was the world's greatest athlete, I'd get 10 great events. But I know that's pretty much not possible. That's the toughness of the decathlon.
When I see my mom in the stands, it always pushes me to succeed.
I'm just happy to be part of the family, the decathlon family.
When I'm later in the competition, I get antsy. I'm seeing everybody else go and achieve things. It's like I'm just twiddling my thumbs.
I think when the competitions come, I am always ready to go. I don't think I ever have not been.
Track and field is tougher physically, but golf is tougher mentally.
If somebody wants me to do something I've never done, I can do it more easily because of all of the years of sports I've played.
The heptathlon world record is nice, but the decathlon is the event. I think the heptathlon is more like a practice. There is something completely different about the decathlon.
I'm very happy to have set a world record in Tallinn. Estonians sure do love athletics and combined events!
I am actually a huge supporter of the Canadian athletes, and they are all really nice people.
I was one of those kids who, everything I tried sports-related, I liked.
The Olympic gold was like going to a theater and seeing a movie that had the ending you expected. But you left the theater thinking, 'You know, that was a good movie.'
When I was a junior and an up-and-coming athlete, I don't think I looked to anyone for inspiration. I was so busy trying to improve myself and learning these new events and learning about the decathlon in general that I didn't really have time to focus on anyone else.
What you do is you're using the other competitors to push yourself, because it's so hard to push yourself.
I think a challenge for myself is to see how many times I can get above 9,000. That would be a good challenge.
If I have to run to put myself in the hospital, if I have to run that hard, that's how hard I'll have to run.
Know that even when you want to give up or throw in the towel, in the end it will all be worth the hard work.
My mom took me to a taekwondo class, and I fell in love. I was seven years old.
What I feel like I'm doing is showing people what is humanly possible when someone commits their entire life to something.
As a decathlete, you take pride in saying, 'The elements, I'm not going to let them affect me. It's just the 11th event. Another thing you have to fight through.'
As athletes, we love to say, 'Just one more; I'm going to figure it out on this next one.' It's tough to pull back the reins and do what is smart physically, listening to your body and always ending a workout or session feeling like I could have done more.
I'm a 'what's next?' guy. I don't know what that is, but I'm excited to find out and put the same kind of energy into it as I put into track.
The first sport I played was baseball. I remember being on the Little League team and someone pitching the ball to me for the first time. I was ready to no longer hit the ball off the tee, and an adult pitched it to me underhand.
You try to figure out the best way to throw the shot put, or the perfect way to long jump, and you don't ever get it. You just chip away, chip away, chip away as time goes on.
Even if you see a great performance, it's not always great getting there. There are injuries... Intrinsically or unconsciously, people understand that - people see those performances, and they know there are stories behind that.
The questions to ask are, why was the decathlon so popular before, and what happened to make it fade? I notice a lot of things in general tend to follow that up-and-down trend.
Now that I'm older, I see the benefits of having free time to release energy.
When you're doing any event on an elite level, you're in tune with your body.
In our marriage, the success of our athletic dreams comes before everything. 'Hey do you want to watch a movie?' 'No, I have a hard workout tomorrow.'
Even though decathlon is really long, there's always something different to look forward to, which is great for mental stimulation.
We all understand that this isn't about me beating you and you beating me. It's about each individual competing against himself.
I'm not much of a gym rat; I'd rather be running, but if it enables me to run faster, then I guess I can tough it out.
I remember growing up, having sports to go to, having recess, those were the things I looked forward to. Yes, I'm an athlete, but I had buddies who weren't, and they looked forward to it, too.
I can't remember when I wasn't running around doing some sort of a sporting activity.
I don't set goals. Competing with a number in your head can be limiting, and I don't know what my capabilities are yet.
I haven't seen kids in years who have holes in the knees of their jeans. Now you go buy jeans with holes in them.
You're just constantly battling this thing that is telling you, 'I don't think I can do it.' I think we all have it. When you're fresh and alert, you can easily put those doubts down. But when you're tired, they easily come up to the surface.
I always try to do better than I have before, so I think it would be good to break the world record.
To be with the other two-time gold medalists is great, but it's great to just be a decathlete.
I do the whole 10-event thing, but at the end of the day, it's still track and field.
I dated my first girlfriend for, like, two weeks in high school, and when you're in high school, it's so much different. I wanted to hang out with my friends and play video games and play paintball and do guy stuff. Girls were never around for my friends group.
Every day, we as athletes face several challenges during the training process, and it is imperative that we approach each situation carefully and with continued precision.
The desire definitely comes from within. There are only a few people who make it to this level and those are the ones who have that innate desire.