Life gets golden for Olympic champs Douglas, Wieber
NEW YORK (Reuters) - When U.S. gymnasts Gabby Douglas and Jordyn Wieber captured gold at the London Olympics, each achieved a lifelong dream, but it was just the opening act for two teenagers who haven't ruled out the 2016 Rio Games or even careers in show business.
Wieber and Douglas, as part of the team dubbed the "Fierce Five," won the women's gymnastics team gold medal for the United States. Douglas also made history when she became the first African-American to take home a gold medal in the all-round individual competition.
The achievement catapulted Wieber, 17, and Douglas, 16, onto the world stage as instant celebrities. But both have their feet firmly on the ground -- and their eyes set on more competition.
"Rio 2016 is in the back of my mind and if all goes well, then I think you will be seeing more of me," Douglas told Reuters.
Wieber also plans to stick with gymnastics and keep competing to see where it takes her. As for the next Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, "It's definitely a possibility," she said.
In the meantime they are enjoying their celebrity.
They have inked endorsement deals, been made beauty ambassadors for Procter & Gamble, met pop stars and made a round of television appearances.
Douglas co-hosted "America's Got Talent."
"After a gymnastic career, I would like to study acting and maybe be a spokesperson or something like that, but I would have to consider that after my gymnastic career," she said.
DETERMINATION AND DEDICATION
Both girls sacrificed time with family and friends to pursue their dreams, and Douglas admitted to being homesick after moving away from her family to Iowa to work with a better coach.
"I remember thinking, I want to go to the mall and now I have to go to training. But now I look back, and definitely the hard work and dedication paid off," Douglas said. "Tough days are when champions are made."
Despite making history, Douglas said she didn't think about the pressure ahead of the Olympics or about winning. She just wanted to go out there, be great and seize the moment.
"I look back and now I can say I have no regrets. That's the worst pain, if you have regrets," she said. "We can all go with our chin held high and say we gave it our all."
"Coming away from the Olympics with a gold medal is more than anyone could ask for," she said.
Both teens are excited about being role models for young girls and would urge them to follow their dreams.
"Always strive for your dreams and personal goals and never let anyone tell you that you can do it, because you can," said Douglas.
(Editing by Gary Hill)