I had the honor of working with Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson on her new memoir that came out this week: A Winning Balance: What I’ve Learned So Far about Love, Faith, and Living Your Dreams.
You may have heard that Shawn recently retired from gymnastics at the ripe old age of 20. What you don’t know is the behind-the-scenes story of her life in the sport as a four-time Olympic gold and silver medalist and a national- and world-champion athlete. What is the real story about how she participated in — and WON — the widely popular Dancing with the Stars competition?
Yes, Shawn has accomplished a great deal, but she’s no stranger to hard work and adversity. Her loss of the major gymnastics prize everyone expected her to win in Beijing, the all-around Olympic gold medal, was the loss of a dream she’d worked for since childhood. And later, she suffered a potentially career-ending injury in a skiing accident that forced her life to a halt and made her rethink what was really important. She wasn’t sure who she was anymore. She wasn’t sure what her goals were. And she wasn’t sure she was satisfied with where she was with her faith and God. Could she find the right kind of success in life—the kind that doesn’t involve medals or trophies, but peace, love, and lasting joy?
This is the amazing true journey of how the young woman who won an Olympic gold medal on the balance beam became even more balanced. I think her recent retirement is a sign of this balance, and I’m thrilled to announce my participation in this project!
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