These images are tough to forget.
For most Americans with only a passing interest in skiing, Olympic athlete Lindsey Vonn is better known for her questionable politics (she’s an ardent critic of President Donald Trump) and even more questionable taste in men (being a one-time Tiger Woods girlfriend can do that.)
But the pictures she posted this week show a side of Vonn the public probably never imagined.
And they’re not for the faint of heart.
The captions are meticulously medical, but the pain they intimate is powerfully personal. Their hope is contagious, too.
Forget politics and her social life for a minute, and you can’t help but sympathize.
“…[I]f I didn’t have the WILL to keep working hard I would never have gotten myself back to the Olympic podium,” Vonn wrote. “No matter what obstacle you face you can always find a way through it.”
Check out the posting here:
#TBT. 2x ACL, 1x MCL, medial and lateral meniscus repairs, bilateral knee tibial plateau fractures, spiral fractured humerus with nerve damage….if I didn’t have the WILL to keep working hard I would never have gotten myself back to the Olympic podium. No matter what obstacle you face you can always find a way through it. I especially wouldn’t have gotten through it without @lindsaywinninger! What obstacles have you faced? How have you overcome them? Would love to hear your stories #WillFindsAWay @underarmour
And she did herself no favors in the public relations arena with her romance with Tiger Woods in the aftermath of the golf superstar’s fall from grace in 2009. He turned out to be a serial womanizer cheating on his wife with a seemingly unending string of beautiful, mainly white and mainly blonde younger women.
(A series of mainstream media stories, like this one on ABC, had a sampling, and Vonn looks like she was right up Woods’ alley.)
Still, Vonn’s gutsy but disappointing performance at the PyeongChang Olympics in February, where she ended up earning a lone bronze medal, had to earn her the respect of fair-minded Americans.
Playing through the pain is part of the athletic creed, of course, and every athlete who performs at the kind of intensity needed to make the World Cup or Olympic competition will have to deal with physical injury of some sort at some point.
But the images Vonn posted make it clear just how much competition can cost an athlete’s body.
And they’re tough to forget.
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