Dan Jansen—A Story of Perseverance

Do you remember Dan Jansen? He was an Olympic speed skater in the ‘80s and ‘90s.

He made it to his first Olympics at the age of 16, where he placed fourth in the 500 meters event in Sarajevo. But Jansen failed to place high enough to bring home a medal for his team.

Four years later, he returned to compete in the Winter Olympics in Calgary. After record starts but two falls, Jansen left the 1988 Olympics without placing.

After another four years of training longer, pushing harder and skating faster, Jansen made it to the the 1992 Winter Olympics. He finished fourth in the 500 meters, but once again returned home empty handed.

Finally—10 years after launching his Olympic career—Jansen defied expectations, winning his first Olympic medal (a gold, at that) and setting a new world record in the 1,000-meter speed skating event at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer.

The morale of this story: Dan Jansen never gave up. Neither should you.

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