If you were a fan of American Gladiators you probably remember Peggy Odita. She was very talented athletically and she matched that skill with an intensity that was usually seen only in the less gifted.
Odita was nice enough to answer some questions about the show. She talked about her athletic experience, which was actually the reason she tried out for Gladiators in the first place.
Also, she comments on how she felt after the show. Even for a talent like Odita, it was a very rough show. This fact is even more incredible when you consider how successful she was throughout the competition. That is why she still takes pride in having been a contestant.
Here are Odita’s answers to the questions I asked of her about the show:
1. Start from the beginning. What interested you in competing on American Gladiators?
In the beginning it was really the chance to win prize money that interested me in American Gladiators. I was training in the heptathlon part-time and working a job part-time and I really wanted the chance to devote more time to training so I thought winning the Gladiators would financially give me the chance to focus more on my heptathlon training.
2. How fun was being on the show?
The show was a blast to work and be on. The people, from the contestants to the crew and the Gladiators themselves were very supportive and an interesting group to be around daily. The challenge of figuring out strategies for each game was fun and exciting as well.
3. I actually remember you pretty well as a competitor. You had a very physical match in powerball. Was the show tougher than you thought it would be?
The show was way tougher than I thought it would be. Gladiators was one of the first, if not the first, “reality-based” television shows. When I saw it on television for the first time I thought, “That can’t be that hard.” I was wrong. The games were extremely physical and it was a good day when someone didn’t have to go to the hospital or get some type of medical treatment. The Gladiators didn’t play. Their reputations were on the line and they wanted to look good for their fans, so they didn’t hold back. I had a lot of respect for them.
4. What was the greatest benefit from being on the show?
The greatest benefit from being on the show was meeting all the great people and still hearing from fans that used to watch the show today. I’m working my businesses and taking care of my 2 kids with my husband and it’s nice to be remembered as a great “contender” as well as being a busy mom. It was a memorable time that I’ll always be thankful for.