Olympic Gold Medalist Sydney McLaughlin Talks About Mental Health And Relationships

American hurdler and sprinter Sydney McLaughlin made her mark at the Olympics last summer, winning gold in Tokyo in both the 400m hurdles and as part of the 4x400m relay team.

And while the 22-year-old runner is glued to her TV for the current Winter Olympics in Beijing, China, she says she doesn’t have a favorite sport or event per se. Instead, she is fully involved in her country across the board.

“I will support the entire USA Team during the Winter Olympics,” he said in an interview last week. “I’m so excited to see them kill it out there!”

McLaughlin has also gained some additional visibility of late, speaking out about mental health and wellness as part of Knot Wellness, a year-long initiative spearheaded by style and nuptials magazine The Knot. she is also the cover star of The Knot Magazine’s spring mental health issue, as the magazine celebrates its 25th year of publication.

By bringing McLaughlin on board, The Knot says it hopes to bolster its latest efforts beyond wedding planning, providing support and guidance on the biggest wellness issues facing millennials and Gen Z as they move through the stages. later in life.

“For 25 years, we have had the honor of being the leading authority on wedding planning for millions of engaged couples,” said Kiara Kempski, vice president of consumer marketing for The Knot Worldwide. “While this period in a couple’s life is joyful, it can also be a stressful time.”

Kempski also noted that as we enter the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, “we are in the midst of a wedding boom, and this year is projected to have the largest number of weddings in recent history – approximately 2.6 million. in the US alone, (as) couples are still navigating the pandemic.”

Lauren Kay, executive editor of The Knot, went a step further, saying, “Sydney McLaughlin is a powerful example of a bride-to-be who puts the importance of her own mental and relationship health at the top of her list while balancing the demands of their training and career.

“We’re honored to share Sydney’s story, advice and best practices, plus wellness content throughout the issue focused on supporting couples at every step of their journey,” added Kay.

While also appearing on the cover of the spring 2022 special issue, McLaughlin opens up about his upcoming nuptials to his fiancée and former NFL player. Andre Levrone Jr. In the upcoming issue, the former University of Kentucky track star reveals how the couple maintains their relationship amid the friendly competition that comes naturally to two top athletes.

Last week, during a brief Q&A before the start of the Winter Olympics, I asked McLaughlin about his mental preparation for last summer’s games, as well as his relationship and competitiveness with Levrone. She hinted that there might be some upcoming athletic competitions between them.

Andy Frye: Spectators may not understand the mental strength and rigor it takes to make it to the Olympics. How do you describe that?

Sydney McLaughlin: Training your whole life for moments, minutes, even seconds, is something that not many people will understand. For me, it has taught me to persevere in ways I never thought I could in order to build the character necessary to get to the next level.

VIDEO: McLaughlin on COVID, training for the Tokyo Olympics

AF: Your fiancee André Levrone he is also an athlete. Do they “talk” to each other?

McLaughlin: I am beyond grateful that Andre can relate to the life and mindset of a professional athlete. He has added a great deal of knowledge and encouragement to my training. Of course we are competitive by nature so a race is definitely in our future at some point!

AF: Many professionals talk about mental health. However, it seems that women have the added burden of having body image thrown at them. What are your perspectives on this?

McLaughlin: Performing at the highest level also brings the most attention and opinions. For me personally I try to distance myself and limit the number of outside voices I let in. Staying grounded through my faith, family, and friends helps me reduce a lot of extra stress.

AF: Which athletes have influenced you the most as a competitor?

McLaughlin: An athlete who has inspired me is Jackie Joyner Kersee. Not only was she an unreal athlete, but her constant support and encouragement throughout my own career taught me a lot about the sport and myself. I am very grateful for who she is.

Read andy freyinterviews with Lindsey Vonn Y Allyson Felix.

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