The Most Inspirational Moments From the 2016 Olympics -- So Far

As we surpass the halfway point of the 2016 summer Olympics, athletes continue to impress and inspire us as they make their marks on the world. From finishing a race with one shoe on to becoming one of the most decorated Olympians of all time, these superhuman athletes have got us gasping, crying and laughing at the funny, moving and shocking moments of the worldwide event.

But it’s not only gold medals that make history. Moments of sportsmanship, resilience and talent also mark some of the greatest events during this year’s games in Rio. Check out the 10 greatest moments from the 2016 Olympics -- so far.

An Ethiopian runner qualified for the steeplechase with just one shoe.

Paul Gilham | Getty Images

Now that's a remarkable feet.

Ethiopian runner Etenesh Diro showed her resilience when she was brought down and forced to race with only one shoe during the Olympic trials on Saturday, Aug. 13. Despite only wearing one shoe, the athlete qualified for the final of the 3,000-meter steeplechase.

Clashing with two other runners, Diro tore off her damaged shoe and continued the race. Ultimately finishing the race 20 seconds slower than her personal best, Olympic officials granted her a special spot for the finals on Monday, in which she placed 14th.

Watch her one-shoe run here.

Michael Phelps became the most decorated Olympic athlete.

ODD ANDERSEN | Getty Images

Michael Phelps ended his record-breaking career as the most decorated athlete in Olympic history. Leading the U.S. to victory in the 400-meter medley relay, Phelps retired with his 23rd gold medal -- 28 medals total.

No other Olympic athlete has even exceeded nine gold medals.

The U.S. got its 1,000th Olympic gold medal.

Vaughn Ridley | Getty Images

The U.S. won its 1,000th Olympic gold medal on Saturday after the women’s 4x100 meters medley relay.


U.S. gymnast Simone Biles defied gravity.

Alex Livesey | Getty Images

With gravity-defying moves, 19-year-old American Simone Biles has been described as one of the greatest gymnasts ever. As The New York Times describes the Texan teen’s skills as superhuman -- “Jumping higher and twisting more than anyone else in the competition” -- Biles has dominated Olympic gymnastics this year.

Claiming gold titles for women’s individual and team all-around, Biles also received a gold for the vault and a bronze for the beam.

Watch one of her first-place performances here.

Fiji won its first Olympic medal.

David Rogers | Getty Images

The small South Pacific island won its first Olympic medal this year -- and it’s gold.

A Chinese swimmer didnt realize she had won the bronze.

GABRIEL BOUYS | Getty Images

Rather than hopping out of the water in joyous victory, this swimmer had no idea she had placed third in the women’s 100-meter backstroke until a reporter told her.

In the middle of her defeat speech, the bronze medalist, Fu Yuanhui, was interrupted when she’s told of the surprising news. “I came in third?! … In that case, it’s not bad at all!” she replied. Yuanhui’s reaction was caught on film during an interview with China Central Television and she’s quickly become a social media sensation.

Watch her reaction here.

A runner dove for gold -- literally.

Alexander Hassenstein | Getty Images

Although it’s not into a pool, diving is still considered legal in Olympic running.

dove across the finish line

U.S. swimmer Katie Ledecky set a new world record.

Clive Rose | Getty Images

new world record

Monica Puig became the first woman medalist for Puerto Rico.

LUIS ACOSTA | Getty Images

Saturday marked a big day for women in Puerto Rico as tennis player Monica Puig became the first woman in history to take home a medal for the island. But that’s not the only historical takeaway of Puig’s big win -- Puig is also the first person to win a gold representing Puerto Rico.

Mo Farah defended his 10,000-meter title after a fumble.

FRANCK FIFE | Getty Images

"At one moment, I thought my dream was over, my race was over. I tried to be tough, and that is what I did,” Mo Farah told BBC Radio Five Live.

Fearing his Olympic dreams were in jeopardy, the British runner proved his strength to the world.

win the gold