So, I have a confession to make: up until the beginning of this year, I had no idea who Simone Biles was.
I'm not big on sports and had no interest in watching the Olympics this past year. Admittedly, it's kind of hard to get televsion reception under the rock I was living under.
I've rectified this egregious offense now due to our upcoming free Author Event with Ms. Biles this Friday, January 6 at Parkway Central Library, where she will be discussing her new book Courage To Soar.
If you're like me and you need to get up to speed on how awesome and inspiring Simone Biles is, here's a quick list of facts and trivia to get you ready for Friday!
- Simone Biles was born in Columbus, Ohio, on March 14, 1997.
- Simone first tried gymnastics at six years old as part of a daycare field trip.
- At the age of 19 and competing in her first ever Olympic Games, she went on to lead the 2016 U.S. Olympic team dubbed the "Final Five".
- She trained on average 32 hours a week to prepare for the Rio Olympics, with Sundays her only day off.
- At a height of 4-foot-8, Biles was the shortest out of all 555 athletes that represented the United States in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
- Simone is the first woman in 42 years to win four straight national titles (2013–2016).
- She is also the most decorated American female gymnast in World Championships history with a total of 14 medals, including a record 10 golds!
- Simone has four German shepherds named Maggie, Atlas, Lily, and Bella.
- She is a Houston sports fan, being spotted at games cheering on the Astros and Texans.
- When she has downtime, she loves to watch Pretty Little Liars and Beverly Hills, 90210 reruns, and her favorite books are from the Hunger Games series.
Simone Biles pictured with her many, MANY medals!