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athlete quotes

100 Most Inspiring Athlete Quotes Of All Time

From the likes of legends like Babe Ruth, Vince Lombardi and Gordie Howe to the heroes in more recent history such as Michael Jordan, Joe Montana and Maradona, we have dug up the greatest and most highly inspiring athlete quotes of all time. But we took it a step further, we also included the modern day marvels such as Lebron James, Maria Sharapova and Lionel Messi. This compelling list has literally every greatest motivational athlete quote ever recorded.

Sports and athletics have always tested the human spirit, body and mind to it's limits. This is why we love to watch sports and this is also why we idolize the participants. Athletes have continuously pushed the human race forward by challenging the impossible. When no one believed in them, when everyone was booing them, they faced and overcame the odds, the pressure and even their own minds at times. It is fair to say that these pro athletes know the what-it-takes to success. They are also very familiar with failure and loss. Some of the deep ingrained wisdom they have learned over the course of their careers and lives can assist any of us too. So here it is, the 100 most inspiring athletes quotes of all time - past and present.

1.) "You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take."Wayne Gretzky


2.) "I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed."Michael Jordan



3.) “Set your goals high, and don't stop till you get there.” - Bo Jackson



4.) “People who know what they want, the universe has a way for clearing a path for them. When you want something bad enough, it’s going to happen for you. You can almost manifest your own destiny by always focusing on it. Almost like the law of attraction. If you really know what you want, the chances of you finding it are so much more strong. It’s almost as if it will come fall right on your lap. I know that I want to be champion.” Jon Bones Jones



5.) “It has nothing to do with talent, and everything to do with effort! Wins and losses come a dime a dozen. But effort? Nobody can judge that. Because effort is between you and you.” - Ray Lewis


 6.)I don’t think there’s ever a time where I step back and say I wish I was something different. I’m doing what I love to do.” - Sidney Crosby



7.) “It’s lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges, and I believed in myself.” - Muhammad Ali



8.) "Every strike brings me closer to the next home run."Babe Ruth



9.) “Anyone will succeed in whatever field of endeavor in life by acquiring the same virtues and character that boxing world champions do — dedication, perseverance, courage, extreme self-discipline and prayers” Manny Pacquiao



10.) “I’m a guy who works very hard and if I want something bad enough, I’m going to do anything possible to get it.” – Steven Stamkos



11.) “If you want, you can overcome all: Pressure, expectations, gravity.” - Mesut Ozil



12.) “A man who wins, is a man who thinks he can.” - Roger Federer



13.) “When I have to make hard decisions, I always listen to the little boy inside me and what he wants." – Robin Van Persie



14.) “Today I know that there is still work to be done, but along the way I am achieving my dreams.” – Candace Parker



15.) “Anyone who sacrifices his dreams to reality, is forever beaten.” – Thomas Muller



16.) “Everyone’s dream can come true if you just stick to it and work hard.”Serena Williams



17.) “Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t” Jerry Rice



18.) “You don’t believe in yourself, why is anyone else going to believe in you?” – Tom Brady



19.) “Always follow your dreams; don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.” – Alex Rodriguez



20.) “When people succeed, it is because of hard work. Luck has nothing to do with success.” - Diego Maradona



21.) “Take those chances and you can achieve greatness, whereas if you go conservative, you’ll never know.” – Danica Patrick



22.) “I was born to play football just like Beethoven was born to write music.” – Pele



23.) “Money is not a motivating factor. Money doesn’t thrill me or make me play better because there are benefits to being wealthy. I’m just happy with a ball at my feet. My motivation comes from playing the game I love. If I wasn’t paid to be a professional footballer I would willingly play for nothing.” - Lionel Messi



24.) “You might not make it to the top, but if you are doing what you love, there is much more happiness there than being rich or famous” - Tony Hawk



25.) “A friend told me ‘I guess you gotta go through a lot of nightmares, before you finally, you know, accomplish your dreams.” Lebron James



26.) "I motivate others by making sure that they understand to go after their dreams and don't let anyone tell you, you can't. If you are motivated enough and put the work in that you can achieve anything in life that you set your mind to." – Magic Johnson



27.) “No matter how good you get you can always get better and that’s the exciting part” - Tiger Woods



28.) “The best decisions aren’t made with your mind, but with your instincts.” - Lionel Messi



29.) “Everything negative – pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.” Kobe Bryant



30.) “You have good days, you have bad days. But the main thing is to grow mentally.” Floyd Mayweather Jr. 



31.) “Your love makes me strong. Your hate makes me unstoppable.” –  Cristiano Ronaldo



32.) "Winning isn’t everything, but wanting to win is." – Vince Lombardi



33.) "Never give up! Failure and rejection are only the first step to succeeding." - Jim Valvano



34.) "Excellence is not a singular act but a habit. You are what you do repeatedly." - Shaquille O'Neal



35.) "You have to have the mentality of executing your game when you don't feel like there's a lot of hope. I think the best feeling is when somebody pushes you to the limit and you dig down a little bit extra. By the same token, you also need a little luck. Sometimes they come together." - Andre Agassi



36.) “I always tell kids, you have two eyes and one mouth. Keep two open and one closed. You never learn anything if you’re the one talking.” - Gordie Howe



37.) "You have to be able to center yourself, to let all of your emotions go.  Don’t ever forget that you play with your soul as well as your body." - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar



38.)“A great tennis career is something that a 15-year-old normally doesn’t have. I hope my example helps other teens believe they can accomplish things they never thought possible.” - Maria Sharapova



39.) “Winners, I am convinced, imagine their dreams first. They want it with all their heart and expect it to come true. There is, I believe, no other way to live.” Joe Montana



40.) “I think luck falls on not just the brave but also the ones who believe they belong there.” – Novak Djokovic



41.) “You can’t sit there and be in awe. You got to go out and do it.” – Corey Perry



42.) “Obstacles don’t have to stop. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Find out how to climb it, go through it or work around it.” - Michael Jordan



43.) “Since the beginning, I always loved the game. When you grow up in Montreal, one day you want to be a professional hockey player. When I was six or seven, I knew that was what I wanted” – Mario Lemieux



44.) “In fighting, in evolution, in life, efficiency is the key, it’s not the most powerful animal that survives. It’s the most efficient.” - Georges St Pierre



45.) “The Harder you work, the easier it looks” Jonathan Toews



46.) “Whatever your goal is: dedicate yourself to it and it’s going to be a lot of sacrifice, but if you love what you want to do, it shouldn’t be a problem.” – Derrick Rose



47.) “I always felt that my greatest asset was not my physical ability, it was my mental ability.”- Bruce Jenner



48.) “Take your victories, whatever they may be, cherish them, use them, but don’t settle for them.” - Mia Hamm



49.) “There may be people that have more talent than you, but there's no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do.” – Derek Jeter



50.) “When you’ve got something to prove, there’s nothing greater than a challenge.” – Terry Bradshaw



51.) “The mind is the limit. As long as the mind can envision the fact that you can do something, you can do it, as long as you really believe 100 percent.” Arnold Schwarzenegger



52.) "I think as you get older, you realize there's always going to be critics. Critics are going to win every time because they can change their critique based on the stats and their own personal feelings." - Aaron Rodgers



53.) “Most talented players don’t always succeed. Some don’t even make the team. It’s more what’s inside.” - Brett Farve



54.) “Without self-discipline, success is impossible, period.” – Lou Holtz



55.) “Make each day your masterpiece.” – John Wooden



56.) "Excellence is the gradual result of always striving to do better.” – Pat Riley



57.) “Good, better, best. Never let it rest. Until your good is better and your better is best.” – Tim Duncan



58.) “If you aren’t going all the way, why go at all?”– Joe Namath



59.) “You can’t put a limit on anything. The more you dream, the farther you get.”Michael Phelps



60.) “I truly believe in positive synergy, that your positive mindset gives you a more hopeful outlook, and belief that you can do something great means you will do something great.” Russell Wilson



61.) “Do not let what you can not do interfere with what you can do.” – John Wooden



62.) “Just keep going. Everybody gets better if they keep at it.” – Ted Williams



63.) “It is not the size of a man but the size of his heart that matters.” Evander Holyfield



64.) “There are only two options regarding commitment. You’re either IN or you’re OUT. There is no such thing as life in-between.” – Pat Riley



65.) “Win If You Can, Lose If You Must, But NEVER QUIT!” – Cameron Trammell



66.) "A winner is someone who recognizes his God-given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills, and uses these skills to accomplish his goals.” Larry bird



67.) I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times. – Bruce Lee


70.) “There’s no reason to hold yourself back and say you can’t do something in life unless you go for it and try to do it.” Russell Westbrook



71.) “I run with heart and determination, and that’s what you can’t measure—heart.” LaDainian Tomlinson



72.) “I’m living a dream I never want to wake up from.” – Cristiano Ronaldo



73.) "It's not wanting to win that makes you a winner. It's refusing to fail." – Peyton Manning



74.) "When you have fun, it changes all the pressure into pleasure." – Ken Griffey Jr.



75.) "If you dream and you allow yourself to dream you can do anything." – Clara Hughes 



76.) “If you are afraid of failure you don’t deserve to be successful!” – Charles Barkley



77.) “The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a person’s determination.” – Tommy Lasorda



78.) “Show me a guy who’s afraid to look bad, and I’ll show you a guy you can beat every time.” – Lou Brock



79.) “If you only ever give 90% in training then you will only ever give 90% when it matters.” – Michael Owen



80.) “The vision of a champion is someone who is bent over, drenched in sweat, at the point of exhaustion, when no one else is watching.” – Anson Dorrance



81.) “The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses – behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.” – Muhammad Ali



82.) “Each of us has a fire in our hearts for something. It’s our goal in life to find it and keep it lit.” – Mary Lou Retton



83.) “Never underestimate the power of dreams and the influence of the human spirit. The potential for greatness lives within each of us.” – Wilma Rudolph



84.) "You have to believe in yourself when no one else does – that makes you a winner right there.” – Venus Williams



85.) "If you have everything under control, you're not moving fast enough." – Mario Andretti



86.) "At the end of the day, you're responsible for yourself and your actions and that's all you can control. So rather than be frustrated with what you can't control, try to fix the things you can." – Kevin Garnett



87.)“What I tell people is be the best version of yourself in anything that you do. You don’t have to live anybody else’s story.” – Stephen Curry



88.) "People wrote me off, but I believed in myself. I got the confidence back, and it grew and grew." Pete Sampras



89.) "A champion is defined by the adversity he overcomes." – Anderson Silva



90.) "I've experienced the highest of highs and lowest of lows. I think to really appreciate anything you have to be at both ends of the spectrum." - John Elway



91.) "I'd like to say to all my fans out there, thanks for the support. And to all my doubters, thank you very much because you guys have also pushed me." - Usain Bolt



92.) "I once cried because I had no shoes to play football with my friends, but one day I saw a man who had no feet, and I realized how rich I am." - Zinedine Zidane



93.) "I'm not better than anyone else. I'm not supposed to be on a pedestal. I've always stayed away from that." - Barry Sanders



94.) "Scientists have proven that it's impossible to long jump 30 feet, but I don't listen to that kind of talk. Thoughts like that have a way of sinking into your feet." - Carl lewis



95.) "I never stop looking for things to try and make myself better." - Barry Bonds



96.) "Everybody pulls for David, nobody roots for Goliath." - Wilt Chamberlain



97.) "I'm a dreamer. I have to dream and reach for the stars, and if I miss a star then I grab a handful of clouds." - Mike Tyson



98.) "To be a champ you have to believe in yourself when no one else will." - Sugar Ray Robinson



99.) "Make sure your worst enemy doesn't live between your own two ears." - Laird Hamilton



100.) “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” – Jackie Robinson


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