Hundreds of senior adults came out this afternoon to learn about different ways to enrich their lives.
This year's Successful Aging Initiative is named Run Your Race: Live Well. And who better to talk to them about running their race than a two-time track and field Olympic Gold medalist.
Edwin Moses is considered one of the most respected and recognized athletes of our time.
“I was probably an unlikely candidate to go to the Olympic games,” Edwin Moses said.
He competed in the 1976 Montreal Olympics and the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.
“I picked the right event in the 400 meter hurdles at the right time,” Moses said.
Both times he ran in the Olympics, he brought home a gold medal. Plus, he set the world record four times.
“In four months of running my event, go from unrecognizable person to Olympic champion,” Moses said.
For a period of nine years, nine months, and nine days from August 1977 to May 1987, Moses tracked down 122 straight victories, and 107 of those were final wins.
Dr. Moses said the whole Olympic experience is completely different than what we see on television.
When the Games were over, Moses headed back to Morehouse College where he was receiving his degree in Physics and Industrial Engineering.
He told WAAY 31 that his classmates knew he was a good runner, but they still couldn't believe he won.
“I told them I was going to win and break the world record, because I projected what I could do. And I was right, because I was a scientist and I knew what I was capable of doing,” Moses said.
Bernice Richardson, the Successful Aging Initiative Chair, said that people consider Moses the "thinking man athlete."
"So if you’re a thinker, you’re going to figure out ways to achieve your goal even though the field is not necessarily level,” Richardson said.
His athletic resume is a lengthy one, but he also has a list full of accomplishments outside of track. This is what brought him to the Rocket City Thursday to speak at the S.A.I. event.
“We can apply some of the information that he gave us about his determination to succeed and move ahead without everything being laid out for us,” Richardson said.
Moses also spoke about overcoming some obstacles in recent years; two traumatic brain injuries.
He suffered one after falling down stairs, and the other occurred when he hit his head on the doorjamb of his car.
“It was something I didn’t expect,” Moses said.
But he stayed positive throughout the whole process and thanks to some aggressive physical therapy, Moses has 98% of everything back. He credits being an athlete for helping him get through those incidents.
Edwin Moses has jumped many hurdles in his life, but he doesn't let them keep him from succeeding.
To learn more about Dr. Edwin Moses, visit his website at www.edwinmoses.com.