Florence Griffith Joyner
Quotes by Florence Griffith Joyner
- “People don't pay much attention to you when you are second best. I wanted to see what it felt like to be number one.”
- "When anyone tells me I can't do anything... I'm just not listening any more."
- “I like being unconventional"
- "We really couldn't afford new Barbie clothes, so my mother taught me how to sew and how to make my own dresses. That was such a joyful time for me -- doing something creative that we both loved."
- "After she [my mother] separated from my father, my mother had no choice but to be independent, and I think I got that from her -- being able to stand on my own two feet. She taught us all that nothing is going to be handed to you. You have to make things happen."
"The ladder of success is never crowded at the top."
- “I had always come in second, and when you’ve been second best for so long you can either accept it or try to become the best. I made the decision to try and be the best in 1988.”
- “I had a good start, a relaxed middle, and kept my knees up at the end. It was more or less a perfect race. When I saw that time, I couldn't believe it, but after the first race time I knew I could get into the 10.50's. It just made me realize that if I kept concentrating, I could go faster.”
--On the day Florence officially became the fastest woman in history
- “There is no substitute for hard work… I have the medals to prove it!”
- "Nothing is going to be handed to you -- you have to make things happen."
- "I don't play around. I want to get on the track, get the job done and get off."
- "I've been in track and field for more than 20 years, and out of all my races, I've lost more than I've won. But it's all been fun."
- "I trained a lot harder -- maybe three times harder -- for the '88 Olympics. There is no substitute for hard work... I have the medals to prove it."
“Your dreams deserve a try… the sky’s the limit!”
- "For a long time I thought that being relaxed meant you were running slow, but it's the contrary. When you're fighting against your body instead of letting go. Relaxation was the key."
- "I like designing clothes, and I wanted to bring something of myself into what I do. The one-legger? That was an accident. I was actually creating an even more radical style by cutting several holes in the stocking, and I happened to cut off the leg. I tried it on and though, 'Hmmm, this looks cute.'"
- "Parents need to be role models for children and instill in them the fact that exercise and healthy eating should be lifelong habits"
- “The youth of today are the citizens of tomorrow.”
Quotes about Florence Griffith Joyner
"We were dazzled by her speed, humbled by her talent, and captivated by her style."
-- Former President Bill Clinton
"She's so sincere and sweet, but she's the most determined athlete I know besides by sister, Jackie."
-- Al Joyner, Florence's husband
"It's a great feeling as a coach to see your athlete run well, hearing the oohs and aahs as she picks people off."
-- Bob Kersee, Florence's former track coach
"For a long time, we've been thought of as 'jocks.' Florence brings in the glamour. She walks out on the track like she owns it."
-- Wilma Rudolph, 1960 Olympic gold medallist
"People are still trying to catch the records she set in '88. It's an amazing legacy. Many have tried and all have failed in terms of her records."
-- Carl Lewis, nine-time Olympic gold medallist
"The gods were with her... It was an unbelievable time."
-- Carl Lewis, who witnessed FloJo's record 100-meter run
"She was a role model for girls and young women in sports. She will be remembered among America's greatest Olympians, and she will be recalled with the legends, like Wilma Rudolph and Babe Didrikson Zaharias."
-- Bill Hybl, U.S. Olympic Committee president
"The beauty of her was that she never changed. She was the same Flo Jo before (she became a star) and she was the same Flo Jo after."
-- John Smith, track coach
"Florence brought a certain style to track, something so different, with her fashionable appearance and her stunning speed."
-- Patricia Rico, president, USA Track and Field
"Florence was a ground breaker, setting new standards in athletic achievement and in fashion."
-- Craig Masbac, CEO, USA Track and Field
"She showed so many young kids that sports was a real alternative to drugs and violence."
-- Arnold Schwarzenegger