August 21, 2016

THANK YOU, MICHAEL PHELPS

I have my favorite Olympians, I can name a few - local and World record breaking champions, but there's this one guy who was so extraordinary in my early teenage years and still am. This is gonna be a very lengthy post, I appreciate it if you guys read it till the end. Hehe.


Michael Phelps after winning 4x100m freestly relay in Beijing 2008


He is Michael Fred Phelps II - the greatest and the most decorated Olympian of all time. Why? Because he has won 28 Olympics medals which 23 of them are Gold. Constantly breaking World and Olympic records.


Athens 2004 - 6 Gold, 2 Bronze. 
Beijing 2008 - 8 Gold. 
London 2012 - 4 Gold, 2 Silver. 
Rio 2016 - 5 Gold, 1 Silver.


I know right? He couldn't be THAT good. I thought the same thing too when he won 8 Gold in Beijing 2008. There were rumors saying that he might be taking the performance-enhancing drugs. I actually believed and quite heartbroken hearing it. However, Phelps passed all nine tests that were administered to him during the games. Yayyyy! So much respect for him. Thus, I keep on rooting for him since Beijing, then London and now Rio.

Everyone has flaws, and that includes Phelps. Since he was little, he was diagnosed with ADHD. He also had problems with his father, Fred. There was a photo of him with bong and he immediately apologized because of his inappropriate behavior. Charged with speeding and driving under alcohol - twice. Battled with depression, announcing his retirement, went to rehab to have some soul searching (not for alcohol addiction, mind you) and finally he's back on track. 

He announced that London 2012 will be his last Olympic games but then, he reversed his decision. Phelps said that he wanted to do Olympics for one last time. Of course, he did - with amazing records. He started his Olympic gold haul with 4x100m freestyle relay. On Day 4, he competed in 200m butterfly to add another Gold medal in his collection.

In case you did not know, in the previous Olympic games - London 2012, he lost to Chad le Clos (South Africa) with 0.05s difference. Chad le Clos won Gold in London 2012, Phelps won Silver. It was shocking to everyone because Phelps was expected to win. Thus, in Rio 2016 he promised to bring back the Gold.  Did he win? He did it again! Chad le Clos was placed fourth in the race. Also, on the same day, 70 minutes after winning 200m butterfly, he won Gold too in 4x200m freestyle relay.


#1 GOAT

#PhelpsFace


Michael Phelps was so determined to win until his #PhelpsFace broke the internet. Ok a little bit explanation on the meme. Both Phelps and Chad le Clos were waiting in the call room. Chad le Clos was.. I don't know - distracting or just doing his routine before competing. There he was, Phelps giving his death stare to his rival. Ok so after the race, Phelps explained that we wasn't giving any stare, he was just in his own bubble, listening to his playlist. Anyway, that is Chad le Clos. So cute, right? Haha.

Moving on, he also won Gold in 200m individual medley (combination of breaststroke, backstroke, butterfly and freestyle). Damn, I could not even swim. With this victory, he has won fourth consecutive Gold since Athens 2004. Phew, too much Gold, isn't it? The number one questions, is it true that Phelps cannot be defeated?

Joseph Schooling from Singapore has proven us wrong. In the 100m butterfly race, he beat Michael Phelps, Chad le Clos and Laszlo Cseh, leaving these three rivals tied in Silver. Instead of being disappointed, Phelps was all smiling and proud of Schooling. Saying that he will support him in the future. I mean like, just look at the pictures. I have never seen someone losing who are so happy like that. Before the race started, I was so proud Singapore made it to final. (Singapore is Malaysia's neighbour, so yea representing SEA!). 

On that time, I had no idea who was Joseph Schooling. I did not even know his name, I only called him "Singapore".

And then, after not more than a minute, Singapore won Gold in the race and.. startled me. My only concern is I was afraid if Phelps would be disappointed in winning Silver just like when Chad le Clos beat him in London 2012. After all, 100m butterfly was the final race in his individual career. However the triple Silver medalist were laughing all by themselves when they saw the scoreboard. I have never been much happier when I saw him, Chad le Clos and Laszlo Cseh holding hands at the podium, smiling and waving to everyone. That is how champions managed their defeat.


"OMG guys three of us won Silver?"






On Day 8, Phelps and his teammates won another Gold in 4x100m medley relay and breaking the Olympic record. 

It was Michael Phelps final appearance at the Olympic games. As soon as team USA won Gold in the relay, he put up his hands and said thank you. I was so emotional on that time :( 16 years, 5 Olympics. After all these years, this time is finally the end. Of course, once upon a time Phelps said London would be his final race but he did came back for Rio. He wanted to do Olympics for one more time. Will he do it again, will he come back for four more years? I have a little faith that he will be coming back for Tokyo 2020. Maybe? God knows.

I know this appreciation post will only be another entries I post during Olympics. Four years more, I will be reading this post and smile and think wow I was such a huge fangirl haha. There will be no more Michael Phelps after this. I was hoping with my whole heart so he can come back for four years more. But when I see his baby, Boomer :') After these years, Michael Phelps should be with his son and Nicole as much as he wanted his father to be by his side when he was a kid. To be the best father and soon-to-be husband. It is an honour to see him swimming, and now he deserves to rest.

To watch his success since I was 12 and now I am graduating soon. To see him at the peak of his career, then having to watch him at his lowest point, and see him rise back again. To see him bringing back 28 Olympic medals back home. To see him inspiring Joseph Schooling to beat his idol. To see him handling defeat well. To see him and little baby P growing. To witness every success of Michael Phelps and his journey. To make Olympics is more exciting to watch. I could not be any happier and prouder. And with that.. thank you, Michael Phelps.

Thank you, so much for the memories.

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