I believe that you should gravitate to people who are doing productive and positive things with their lives.

At 14, you think you compete, you retire and you get a job. I didn't think gymnastics was a career that was going to change my life.

I like Oklahoma. It's a quiet place. You can work, and nobody disturbs you.

It's like someone important is missing from a party because you can't imagine an Olympic gymnastics competition without Romania.

People always accused me of not smiling like my rival Olga Korbut, but that was just my personality. When you're balancing on a nine-inch beam, you have to concentrate. But if you look back at the footage, I was always smiling and waving at the crowd after my performances.

The fans had become used to looking toward the scoreboard whenever a gymnast stuck a landing. You could tell they were thinking, 'Was that good enough? Would the numbers read 10.00?' The athlete was looking, too.

If I was 14 or 15 again, I would do the same thing. I've done everything. I think I've accomplished more than I had in mind.

I would love to be in 'Dancing With the Stars.'

Ceausescu thought I had only a few medals, but I have a room full of them in Bucharest, between 150-200 in all. They needed suitcases to haul them out.

I have a classic taste with a twist, because classic never goes away.

When I look back, I am happy that my mum took me to the gymnastics club. I didn't join gymnastics to become a famous athlete or celebrity; it just happened - I did more than I expected, of course.

I am very highly appreciated in my country, and everybody seems to love me.

I live in the moment. I can turn the page and move on.

Now, I have a kid, I have businesses to take care of, I have to travel. I have to sit down... and find a little time for me.

I always say I don't want to change anything in my life.

When I got married in Bucharest, there were 10,000 people on the street. People didn't go to work that day. It was emotional to see how people care about you. I didn't expect that.

I like seeing advanced acrobatics, but I also like to see more than tumbling. It's important to combine the artistry of gymnastics with the tough skills. It's called artistic gymnastics. We should stand by the name.

Of course, most people remember that I received the first perfect 10 in Olympic gymnastics competition.

I like risky stuff.

It was good to be a kid because I did not realise all the things that came with the success. Going to the Games, I was asked what I expected to do.

When I went into the Montreal Games, nobody expected much out of me.

When you go out of your country and meet people, you get a wider perspective.

My marriage to my husband, Bart Conner in 1996 is my proudest personal moment.

I never personally complained; everybody else complained for me.

Two days after returning from Montreal, I was training again, and I went on to win two more golds at the 1980 Moscow Olympics.

Life is not easy for anyone. You have to have ups and downs. You can make mistakes. You learn and tr

We developed a system in Romania that was very successfully continued for a number of years, but I don't know if it was because of some conflict in the organisation or whether there was government interference... but somehow, they have forgotten the importance of raising gymnasts to be ready for every Olympics.

It feels good when you come to a place like Oklahoma to charge up the batteries. I need that.

That's what everybody remembers. They don't remember how many medals I won in my career. They remember the 10s.

I'm the kind of person, I leave a little space for better.

If I have a feeling of not trusting, I don't get too close.

Near the end of my career, I saw things that didn't make too much sense to me when I was a kid.

I cannot change anything, so I don't want to think about what I would have done.

I tell people, 'Have you ever been to Oklahoma? There are a lot of nice people there that do wonderful things.'

In the '80 Olympics... people expected me to win. I was good enough to win, and I made a mistake and ended up second, which is pretty good, too.

Of course I used to smile and laugh in 1976, but not when I was competing. Please show me somebody who laughs when they are concentrating; I always smiled.

Hard work has made it easy. That is my secret. That is why I win.

Maybe that's why I like gymnastics - because I like to fly.

I wasn't allowed to leave Romania. That made me mad. You just want your freedom. You want your space. You want opportunity.

You should also appreciate the goodness around you, and surround yourself with positive people.

I basically have my life today as a result of what I did as a child. What did I miss out on? Yeah, I missed not hanging out at shopping malls, I guess, but that is not a big deal because you don't get a medal for that.

Romania doesn't have a big tradition of gymnastics as a fun activity. We were a little behind in this aspect.

Other kids had more talent, but I was the most focused.

We only had white socks in Romania. But when I used to come back from the States, I used to bring back pink and yellow socks with all kind of designs, and hair clips and elastic bands for the ponytail that had colourful designs.

What makes me happy is the appreciation of people around me.

I thought I was going to retire at 20, and I was going to be a surgeon.

My parents were very loving, but disciplinarians.

I don't think many people consider in their heart that they have two places that are home.

Every generation comes with a unique athlete, I don't think anybody wants to be the next Nadia; they want to be themselves.