A Photo Of A Young Katie Ledecky Meeting Michael Phelps Is The Definition Of Olympic Goals

10 years after meeting her swimming idol, Ledecky became his peer.

It's hard not to be warmed by the unfiltered joy on athletes' faces when they win a race or reach a personal best. Especially at the Olympics, which is essentially a giant gathering of the best sportsmen and women from every country to compete and canoodle.

It is especially captivating to see how far these athletes have come. In USA swimmer Katie Ledecky's case, one photo of her from 10 years ago serves as a particularly poignant reminder of that. 

Tweeted by ESPN sports business journalist Darren Rovell, the picture is of Ledecky as a wee 9-year-old beaming at the camera as she receives the autograph of none other than swimming god Michael Phelps.

The picture is a foreshadowing of her success in the years that follow. At 19, she has broken an astonishing 12 world records and is credited with making distance races more exciting than anyone thought they could be

Ten years after meeting her swimming idol, Ledecky became his peer. Though some people have called her the "female Michael Phelps" — because, apparently, it's impossible for female athletes' accomplishments to be not be compared or attributed to a man — it's clear that Ledecky is paving her own superhuman path to wild success, thank you very much.