(BEIJING, CHINA ) - The 2008 United States Olympic Boxing Team arrived in Beijing, China on Wednesday, August 23 to begin preparations for the Olympic Games and is now settled into their training routine. The team moved into the Olympic Village on Thursday, August 30 and continues to train two-three times daily at Beijing Normal University.
Light flyweight Olympian Luis Yanez (Duncanville, Texas) conducted the first of nine Q&As, sharing his thoughts on the upcoming Olympics and training in Beijing. He will compete in his opening bout of the 2008 Olympic Games on August 13, but is working hard to be prepared when he steps through the ropes for his first bout.
1. How are you feeling now just nine days out from the Opening Ceremonies?
I feel good, I feel strong, I feel confident and I'm just ready.
2. How has being on the ground here in China affected your training?
It has changed a lot, its changed my motivation, its changed my thinking; it has just changed a lot of things.
3. What is the most challenging part of being here in Beijing?
Staying focused, because we have so many distractions around you, such as media. You have a lot of people coming up to you. I keep pushing myself to stay focused.
4. What is your favorite thing about China so far?
The food, they have really good food at Beijing Normal University (Beijing Normal University is the raining facility where the U.S. Olympic Boxing Team is training. The chefs from the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs have traveled to China to prepare the food for the U.S. teams training and BNU)
5. What was the one thing you wanted to make sure you brought to China?
One thing I wanted to bring to China with me was my family, and they are here in my heart, but also my motivation and my confidence. I take my rosary everywhere with me and it was blessed by my grandmother and I take that everywhere I go.
6. What is a typical day like here for you in Beijing?
I wake up really sore and have to get in a cold plunge.
7. Are any family and friends coming to China to support you?
Not at all
8. What does being an Olympian mean to you?
It means that I can represent my country, myself and my family and I know that I am someone out there representing something positive.
9. What is your favorite thing to eat here?
10. What can people expect to see from you when you finally take the ring at the Workers Indoor Arena?
For sure, confidence. They are going to see I am a new and different Luis coming in. They are going to think that Luis Yanez that competes on the 13th is a whole new Luis.
Two-time Olympian and 2007 World Champion Rau'shee Warren (Cincinnati, Ohio) will be the second U.S. Olympic boxer featured.