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What Pump-Up Songs Get Olympic Athletes Going?

Need a kick in the shorts? Team USA Winter Olympians explain how they get pumped to perform.

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NBC Olympics / USOC

Ashley Wagner

Pump-up ritual: “I always have to find a rhinestone on the floor before I go on the ice to compete.”

Pump-up song: “Anything by Lady Gaga.”

Ashley was the U.S. women’s figure skating national champion in 2012 and 2013. Her hometown is Alexandria, Virginia.

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NBC Olympics / USOC

Erika Brown

Pump-up ritual: “My good luck charm is a necklace with a gold curling stone from my mother.”

Pump-up song: “It’s Time” by Imagine Dragons

Erika is a three-time Olympic curler (1988, 1998, 2014) and mother of two. She was born in Madison, Wisconsin.

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NBC Olympics / USOC

Eddy Alvarez

Pump-up ritual: “I usually put on my left skate first.”

Pump-up song: “Animals” by Martin Garrix

Eddy is a speedskater heading to his first Olympics. He grew up in Miami, Florida.

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NBC Olympics / USOC

Noelle Pikus-Pace

Pump-up ritual: “My family is my good luck charm. We travel the world together and they help me to do my best.”

Pump-up song: “All this Time” by One Republic

Noelle is a Team Kellogg’s 2014 Olympic hopeful (skeleton race) and mother of two. She was born in Provo, Utah.

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NBC Olympics / USOC

Rico Roman

Pump-up ritual: “(Teammate) Josh Sweeney and I have a hand shake high five thing we do before every game, and it always gets me in a good mood.”

Pump-up song: “Sometimes might be rap or hip-hop, other times bachata or salsa. Whatever I’m in the mood for.”

Rico is a sled hockey Paralympian, U.S. Army veteran, and father of two. His hometown is Portland, Oregon.

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NBC Olympics / USOC

Steven Holcomb

Pump-up ritual: “I have a Superman shirt that is a must-wear on race day. I have won every race that I’ve worn that shirt in.”

Pump-up song: “I don’t listen to music before I bobsled. As a driver, I need to remain calm and collected. Plus, each track has its own rhythm, and I need to be in tune with that.”

Steven is a bobsled driver and gold medal-winner in the 4-man bobsled (2010). He was born in Park City, Utah.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published in Reader's Digest