Bode Miller is headed to Sochi for the 2014 Olympics. It will be his fifth Olympics as part of the U.S. ski team.
Miller, 36, said that he is feeling his age, especially after sitting out of the 2013 World Cup season after getting surgery on his left knee, which he originally injured in 2001.
“A knee injury like I had is a pretty slow process, aside from the fact that I’ve been pretty rough on my body for [the] 17-plus years of my World Cup career,’’ Miller told TODAY. “I’m healthy enough that I’m skiing as hard as I can, but I definitely feel my age. I’ve been pushing pretty hard this season. I have a lot of extra work to do after taking last year away to heal the injury, so I’m trying to catch up to the young kids right now.”
But Miller said in an interview posted on the team’s website that his knee “should be stronger than any time since before I injured it.”
The best part of the injury may have been spending extra time with his new wife Morgan Miller–they married in October 2012–and his daughter.
And though Miller is old, he is motivated.
“I have said many times that motivation is a key trait for me when it comes to my racing–I am super motivated to do great things next year and I know 2014 will be my last Olympics,” he said. “I have a chance to finish my competitive career on a really high note and I’m going to do everything I can to make that happen.”
Miller has five Olympic medals, 33 World Cup victories, and two World Cup titles.
In Vancouver four years ago, Miller took the gold in men’s combined; the silver in men’s super-g, and the silver in Men’s downhill. He made the short list of athletes that won at least two gold medals or three total medals, along with fellow Americans Johnny Spillane and Apolo Anton Ohno, both of whom are retired.
Miller is already looking ahead of the Olympics as well, as he is a partner in a company called The Grilled Cheese Truck, which provides employment opportunities to veterans returning from service.
“It’s a tough thing to see when guys come back from serving their country like that and don’t really have any career opportunities,” Miller said.
“They can barely find jobs to make minimum wage, and I think that was something that me and the other partners in the company felt like we had an opportunity to change. We’re now offering these turnkey opportunities to come in and use their skill set that they’ve developed over their time in the service and make high six figures a year, which I think is just a really cool, American kind of thing to do.”