Maybe it’s because they’ve learned to live life that bit faster, maybe it’s because they’re doing it for someone they love; in the Olympic cycling time trial, being a mother is no obstacle to getting on the podium.
The American winner, Kristin Armstrong, retired from competitive cycling in 2009 to have a baby.
Few people doubted that she would get back on her bike, though some might have doubted she would get back to exactly where she left off, winning her second straight Olympic time trial gold on Wednesday at age 38.
And Russia’s Olga Zabelinskaya, whose bronze was her second after Sunday’s road race, has two small boys at home of barely school age.
How do they manage it?
“My son has given me balance,” Armstrong said. “I can stop thinking about cycling.”
Sports fans attending the LondonOlympics were told on Sunday to avoid non-urgent text messages and tweets during events because overloading of data networks was affecting television coverage.
Commentators on Saturday’s men’s cycling road race were unable to tell viewers how far the leaders were ahead of the chasing pack because data could not get through from the GPS satellite navigation system travelling with the cyclists.
It was particularly annoying for British viewers, who had tuned in hoping to see a medal for sprint king Mark Cavendish.
Many inadvertently made matters worse by venting their anger on Twitter at the lack of information.
Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake, the fastest men in the world, storm over the line together in the 100-metres final of the London Olympics - a photo finish.
As they eagerly look up for the result, a political message from a rogue hacking group fills the screen as the world looks on in disbelief.
While unlikely, the task of ensuring the unthinkable does not happen falls to the Games’ IT services provider Atos .
Analysts say infiltrating the scoring and timing systems at one of the 35 competition venues around Britain, especially the Olympic stadium in east London, is a target for hackers looking to spread political messages, known as ‘hacktivists’, and criminal gangs looking to cash in on the Games.
A new startup is embracing the openness of mobile and Internet platforms and developing Ouya, a $99 gaming console for the television with software and hardware that is designed to be hacked. The device will include a controller with a touch pad and a free software development kit.
“The current console market is closed, it’s expensive to develop and it’s expensive to buy games,” Julie Uhrman, a former executive at video game website IGN, said. “And we really wanted to turn that idea on its head by creating an open game console where it was inexpensive and affordable for gamers both on console side and game side.”
The team hopes Ouya will bring innovation to the good old video game console by attracting “indie” or independent game developers and makers of Triple-A game titles in a bid to capture the imagination of casual and core gamers alike.
Moreover, all the games will be free-to-try. That means developers can pick any plan to monetize their offerings like micro-transactions through sales of virtual goods or subscriptions, as long the gamer can try the game at first for free.