TOKYO | Maya Nakanishi is one of Japan’s most promising track and field athletes. She just missed the podium at Beijing and is now on her way to London.
She has spent years training, competing or earning money in a bid to continue the cycle.
To get that extra edge, she left Japan — where she holds the national records in her class for the 100- and 200-meters and long jump — three years ago to chase her dream at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif., with track and field great Al Joyner, the 1984 Olympic triple jump gold medalist.
Those who are close to Nakanishi say her ambition, dedication and energy are on par with any Olympian they have ever known.
“She is amazing. She’s a great athlete,” Joyner said. “Her dedication is totally different.”
Ask any Japanese who she is, however, and you are almost certain to draw a blank stare.
Until you mention that calendar.
The one in which she posed naked.
i always wondered what these gymnasts looked like naked!
― Jarod Kintz, This is the best book I’ve ever written, and it still sucks
― Melissa de la Cruz, Masquerade
Do you think it’s true?
― Maya Angelou