Elite Athletes Share the Setbacks and Lessons Learned in 2023, Looking Ahead to the Paris Olympics

There are no defeats without learning and elite athletes agree on that Nicole Caicedo (Athletics), Jaqueline Facts (Karate), Luisa Valverde (Lucha), Bryan Garboa (Judo) and Beautiful Walls (Weightlifting) when asking them what negative sports situation or special desire they will burn this year that is less than 24 hours away from ending.

In conversation with EXPRESSathletes talk about their setbacks and how these have strengthened them for the 2024 season, a year that will have the Paris Olympic Games as a main course.

NICOLE CAICEDO (ATHLETICS): “I would leave my father’s death behind”

For the sprinter Nicole Caicedo What he would mainly leave behind in 2023 is the death of his father, a fundamental pillar in his sports career: “I would burn the death of my father and other personal problems. It was a death that hit me a lot, but in part it also helped me overcome a lot and enhance my activities to reach 2024 in the best shape.”

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Beyond that, the 22-year-old from Guayaquil confesses that this season was productive and exceeded her expectations: “Leaving that aside, I said goodbye to 2023 in the best way because I had no injuries and everything went wonderfully. “It was one of the best years of my sporting life,” added the silver medalist in the Chile Pan American Games, national record holder in the 400 meter dash and first place in the 200 meter dash at the Absolute World Cup in Budapest (Hungary). Without a doubt, a campaign that marked one of the prospects with the greatest projection in his discipline.

JACQUELINE FACTOS (KARATE): “The injustices of judges”

“I would burn some injustices that I had in some fights… that is, I would burn a few judges,” the woman said with a laugh. karateka Jacqueline Factswhich bitterly remembers its elimination in the Dublin World Cup Premier League.

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“In my third fight against the Ukrainian, she pretended to be KO by a kick from me. It’s been a long time since I saw an athlete exaggerate and fake to nullify a point from his opponent.In years I have not seen someone fall so low as long as they do not accept that they defeated them. With that fight he entered the semifinals of the world cup, but unfortunately a Brazilian judge believed all the drama,” said the 38-year-old from Quito, of the competition held in Ireland last September, which brought together the 32 best karatekas in the world. world. Jaky, as she is also nicknamed, also added that she would like to burn her “big toe injury on her right foot” that had her “in pain all year.”

LUISA VALVERDE (LUCHA): “I would burn my insecurities”

For Luisa Valverde, 2023 is described as “a great year in the sporting and personal sphere.” However, the fighter who weighs 57 kilograms is not satisfied and states that, like any high-performance athlete, “there are always things to improve.” One of them is the insecurities that often play in the heads of athletes and cause them to falter in their goals.

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“It would burn my insecurities, because not being sure is what has cost me many times to get a medal and I know that I can give much more,” highlighted the 32-year-old from Babahoy. “Personally, I would burn everything bad that could surround my family, we live in complicated times due to the security issue in the country and there is always the fear that something could happen to them and we cannot do anything, because we are far from home “added Luisa, who belongs to the ranks of the Guayas Sports Federation (Fedeguayas).

BRYAN GARBOA (JUDO): “I would say ‘bye’ to my cup competitions”

“I would burn the Pan American competitions that didn’t go well for me at all. At an event of Chile, in September, my head was completely out of focus. I would take that event out because it made me very distrustful of subsequent events. I was also dealing with the right elbow injury. It was the year I had the most injuries and I would get rid of them all. However, the season leaves me with a good balance since I was able to go to my first Pan American Games, I got to know the Grand Slam and the Grand Prix. They were super strong events where I encountered very tough people,” said judoka Bryan Garboa, who, as he points out, 2023 was the great opportunity to stand out in the international arena.

The 22-year-old from Guayaquil projects that his talent and discipline will catapult him to the Paris Olympic Games: “I have in mind to enter the quota classification, but it would be better if I entered directly.”

BELLA PAREDES (WEIGHTLIFT): “Time. Sometimes I feel like it’s very short”

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Beautiful Walls stated that, despite having an outstanding year where he was awarded the bronze medal in the Absolute World Weightlifting Championshipscrowned the National Senior Championship, and was recognized as the second best athlete in Guayas on the Night of the Legacy, she was left “hungry for more”, in a season shaken by injuries and with a lack of time.

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“The injuries would completely burn them out. Sometimes high-performance athletes slow down the process when we go forward with all our energy and this year I had several: the fluid in my right knee leaked three times, I had an injury to my right shoulder and one to my elbow. right too. Another thing I would burn would be time, sometimes I feel like it is too short and I would like more,” she said. from the halter.

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2023-12-30 04:04:21
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