Alexi Harding Usain Bolt

A Bolt of Lightning: Usain Bolt’s Career

As a runner and the author of a running blog, I think it’s important to highlight tips, tricks, races, events and other health and fitness related topics. I also believe that it is important to take note of those who excel in our shared interests. Athletes who have been able to take our hobbies and interests and turn them into successful professions should be noted. And there is one athlete in particular who has accomplished so much in his lifetime that I wanted to take a moment to reflect on his career. This particular athlete means a lot to me, as he was born in my home country of Jamaica. I wanted to take a deeper look into the life and times of Usain Bolt.


Born in Jamaica in 1986, Usain St Leo Bolt is a man who comes from humble beginnings. He was born and raised in rural Jamaica, and from the beginning he showed signs of promise. Bolt himself noted that, as a child, sports was the primary thing on his mind. While he excelled at several sports, it was in sprinting that Bolt truly shined. His coaches instantly caught wind of his talent began to encourage him. He eventually came under the tutelage of former Olympic sprint athlete Pablo McNeil, who helped train Bolt until he moved onto the Jamaica Amateur Athletic Association.


From there, it was nowhere but up for Bolt. After having earned a silver medal in the CARIFTA games in 2001. Then, at the young age of 15, Bolt shocked the world by becoming the world’s youngest junior gold medalist for winning the 200-meter dash, for which he was awarded the International Association of Athletics Foundation’s Rising Star Award. This was Bolt’s first experience on the world stage, but it certainly wouldn’t be his last.


After attending the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Bolt was eliminated in the first round of 200-meter dash. This fueled Bolt’s drive to become the world’s greatest. And that’s exactly what he did.


Bolt’s most famous moment came in 2008 during the Summer Olympics in Beijing where he let the world know who he was, and what he planned on doing. During the 100-meter final, Bolt broke the world record with a speed of 9.69 seconds; the 200-meter saw a similar outcome, with Bolt not only earning the gold, but beating the world record with a time of 19.19 seconds.


Bolt later cemented his status as the fastest man alive by earning three gold medals at three separate Olympic Games (2008, 2012, 2016), thus effectively earning the “triple-triple.” Bolt was the first Olympic athlete to ever earn the title.


Just this year, Usain Bolt decided to retire from athletic competition. Bolt’s legacy has proven to be an inspiration to not just young Jamaican athletes, but athletes all over the world. His ability to completely obliterate world records with such ease and finesse is unparalleled and he will be remembered as one of the greatest athletes to ever live.