"It's definitely been a long process. But to be able to walk into a JCPenney and see my face and the clothes, the hang tags with my face on it, it's incredible," said Liukin. "A lot of hard work paid off, but it's all sides of the team. It's become a huge family. So it's been a lot of fun this summer."
"It's so hard to leave. To walk away from something that you love so much," said Liukin. "A lot of people are like, 'What are you still doing here?' I walk in and they're like, 'Oh you're back' and, you can't leave, you know it draws you into it. You have this passion for it and you know that is the only way I think you can achieve your dreams."
The Olympic games are in Liukin's blood. Her father Valeri is an Olympic champion, her mother Anna excelled at Worlds. According to Liukin's website, when the family first moved to the United States, her parents couldn't afford a babysitter, so they took her to the gym where they worked and that is where her first steps toward becoming a champion were formed.
"You can't ride the wave on talent alone. You have to have more work ethic and discipline, more than talent," said Liukin. "I was definitely graced with good genes, but I think, a lot came from hard work and being able to set goals, for yourself and work at it."
"It's those days you don't want to get out of bed or it's raining outside, and the last thing you want to do is be in this gym for seven hours a day, but those are the days you are stronger and its going to eventually take you up to the top," said Liukin.
Now she is the teacher herself, in some ways, and the young students now look up to Liukin as their role model; something Liukin said is an honor.
"Being around all these little girls all day long. You know, you walk into a gym and they all come running up and say, 'Hi,' just that feeling," said Liukin. "It's more like an honor to me that little girls do look up to me and the moms will come up to me and say my daughter is the biggest fan."
Liukin is humble about her accomplishments and the first to credit her family with her success. Since winning Olympic gold, she has been on the road constantly and she still has at least one goal she hasn't achieved, she would also love to graduate from college.
"I've been just very fortunate to have such good people around me, not just my parents, but my friends, my manager and my agent," said Liukin. "Just the people that have been very supportive and only want the best for me."