How Did Lauren Cheney Holiday Become Unstoppable at the Olympic Games, World Cups, & Fighting a Brain Tumor? – Season 3 Episode 1

Lauren Cheney Holiday

The Recap

Sam welcomes to the podcast two-time Olympic gold medalist and World Cup Champion, Lauren Cheney Holiday. Among her stellar career accomplishments, Lauren was the first player in National Women’s Soccer League history to have her jersey retired by the league. She also set multiple school records at UCLA, including most points, most game-winning goals scored, and tied the school record for most goals scored. In this episode, Lauren talks about her journey to the 2008 and 2012 Olympics and the indescribable feeling of representing the United States. She shares her experience at the 2015 World Cup and recalls the moment she scored the third goal in the Final to help the United States claim back the title. Lauren opens up about her harrowing experience learning that she had a brain tumor while pregnant with her daughter. Finally, Lauren talks about her recovery from brain surgery and provides advice on how to gain and maintain confidence.

Episode Highlights

01:00 – Introducing today’s guest, Lauren Cheney Holiday

02:24 – Sam takes a moment to thank her sponsor, Tumbl Trak and Right Rice

03:24 – Sam and Lauren share their first memories of each other

05:54 – Lauren opens up about her childhood growing up in Indiana

09:54 – How Lauren handled the pressure of getting invited to try out for the National Women’s Soccer League

10:31 – Lauren recalls the collegiate recruitment process and why she chose UCLA

13:22 – Struggles transitioning from Indiana to Los Angeles

14:53 – Sam reads off some of Lauren’s stats and accomplishments

17:20 – What Lauren learned from her experience at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing

20:23 – Life as a professional athlete

23:01 – How the 2012 Olympics differed from the 2008 Games

23:46 – What traits Lauren values the most in a leader

24:55 – Lauren’s favorite Olympic memory outside of soccer

26:36 – Lauren recalls the story of how she met her husband, Jrue

28:10 – Balancing a relationship as professional athletes

29:55 – Sam takes a moment to thank her sponsors Tumbl Trak and Right Rice

30:54 – Lauren’s experience in the 2015 World Cup

34:12 – What it felt like to score a goal in the 2015 World Cup Final

36:21 – How Lauren’s World Cup experience differed from her Olympics experience

37:20 – Why Lauren chose to retire at the height of her career

39:24 – Equality in women’s sports

41:22 – Struggling with retired life

44:02 – Lauren opens up about finding out she was pregnant and had a brain tumor

50:08 – How Lauren got through this difficult time

56:07 – Lauren walks listeners through the day of her brain surgery

58:25 – Lauren’s grueling recovery

1:02:06 – Sam and Lauren discuss the importance of having confidence

1:06:32 – Lauren recalls missing her coaches and teammates

1:09:10 – Lauren answers some fan questions

1:14:20 – Lauren reveals one thing people can do to get 1% better each day

1:14:56 – Sam thanks Lauren for joining the show

Tweetable Quotes

Links Mentioned

Lauren’s Twitter

Lauren’s Instagram

Right Rice Use the code ‘20SAMP’ for a 20% discount

Tumbl Trak: Gymnastic, Cheer, Dance, Martial Arts and Special Needs Equipment

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