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Olympic medalist Blagovest Stoyanov: I failed with athletics and I was transferred to canoe-kayak

- Tell us about your story with canoe. How did it all begin?

- My story is slightly different, because I was involved in athletics as a child, and for the sports school I was directing to, I applied for this. But it did not happen to me and they transferred me to the kayak. At that moment, I had no idea what that sport was like. I started training, I liked it and things developed in a favorable way.

- Then how did you reach the Olympic Games?

 - Very hard. With lots of work and deprivation. We were constantly in camps - there was no time for social life, for friends, for family. You are preparing only for the competitions and trying to be in good shape. Competitions are the most important, everything else is in the background, and this is quite difficult.

- How do you always motivate yorself so that the competition comes first?

- When you pursue a goal, you have to be motivated. If you are not motivated, you can not reach it.

- Is it harder to win an Olympic medal than another medal?

- It is very hard to win a medal at a world championship, but the Olympics is a huge forum - everything is very different, the motivation too. This does not mean that at the world championship you no motivation, but an event that happens once in four years and which is promoted worldwide, the responsibility is greater and with your participation you take a huge responsibility. You strive to achieve your goal.

- Does the medal bear responsibility?

- Yes, the responsibility after a competition is quite large, because you have to defend what you have achieved. You do not have to relax at all. It is hard.

- How do you handle having such a great responsibility?

- Over the years, you learn how to keep your psychic well. With each competition you are getting better and better. And even the body gets used to it.

- Which is the most memorable moment of your career?

- Winning the Olympic medal. Emotion can not be expressed. It must be experienced. At first you do not know what happened, and with every next moment you know what you have actually achieved. Experience is unique.

- What did sport give you and how would you motivate young athletes today?

- First, sport made me very responsible. I am accustomed of bearing responsibilities - when I start with one thing, I have to do it. Let the young people believe more in themselves. They should be more responsible and strive for the things they get together to make them all the way and not give up by the emotions.

* The interview is published with edits by the author. All rights to the text created under the project "Olympic Medalists of the City of Plovdiv" belongs to "Youth Center Plovdiv". 

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Project "Establishing Youth Centre in the city of Plovdiv", with the financial support of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area 2009-2014 ДО3-9/28.01.2014

Youth Centre Plovdiv - a powerful factor for local development" under the „Local Development, Poverty Reduction and Enhanced Inclusion of Vulnerable Groups” programme with the financial support of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area 2014-2021 № BGLD-1.003-0002