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Exclusive Interview With 2018 Hall Of Fame Inductee Nastia Liukin
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That Russian-born Nastia Liukin had quite a career would qualify as an understatement. She is a four-time world champion and won five medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, including the all-around title.

Liukin was the second gymnast from WOGA, formerly a grocery store, to win an Olympic all-around gold. The first was Carly Patterson at the 2004 Athens Games.

Following are excerpts from her interview, which will appear in the July/August 2018 issue of International Gymnast magazine.

IG: With various injuries prior to the 2008 Olympics, how did you manage to win the gold there?

NL: One hundred percent because of my dad’s (Valeri Liukin) very thoughtful plan he put together for me. The most important thing was to first get healthy and physically as fit and strong as I could possibly be. That meant hours of conditioning every single day, but that’s what my body needed.…

IG: What was it like to go back to your room after the all-around final in Beijing, with Shawn Johnson, who had won the silver, as your roommate?

NL: While it’s not something we’ve really discussed publicly, yes, it was very difficult for two 16- and 18-year-old girls, who truly were the best of friends. We were emotionally just drained, physically exhausted, and I know we both just wanted to be with our families.…

IG: What does it mean for you to be inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame?

NL: I remember watching my dad get inducted in the Hall of Fame, and I was so proud to be able to be there and watch him get inducted. I remember telling myself, ‘How cool would it be if one day I could also be inducted’? It’s truly the greatest honor in the world.…

Among other questions, her interview includes her commentary for NBC, her major at NYU and what projects she’s working on.

Read the complete interview in July/August 2018 issue. To subscribe to the print and/or digital edition, or to order back issues of International Gymnast magazine, click here.

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