Nastia Liukin is going for it. After three years away from competition, the all-around women's gymnastics champion from the Beijing Olympics is trying to make a comeback. "Yes, I'm officially going for London," Liukin said.
After winning five medals in Beijing, Liukin was an instant celebrity. There were magazine covers and big endorsement deals. But Liukin missed being at the WOGA gym in Plano. "I went through a period of time where I was so lost and confused. I didn't know who I was anymore," she said.
Liukin first had to convince her father, who is also her coach, that she was serious about another Olympic run. "He was not really behind the plan at first." Valeri Liukin needed proof. "You have to prove to me that you want it, and I will help you. Otherwise, I'm a very busy man," he said.
Nastia now trains seven hours a day, six days a week. She knows there is no time to waste if she wants to return to Olympic form. "It's kind of like a race against the clock. I know time's going by very quickly," she said.
Making the team will not be easy. There is more American gymnastics talent than ever, and new Olympic rules have reduced the size of the team. But Liukin says she wants no regrets. "No matter what happens, I'm just enjoying this process. Enjoying the journey. Enjoying being at the gym every single day again."