‘I should have stopped before Tokyo’

‘I should have stopped before Tokyo’

‘I should have stopped before Tokyo’

Simone Biles gets honest around summer Olympics, says she “should have quit before Tokyo” and opens up about the role that former US gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar abused in her mentally challenging days.

“If you looked at everything I’ve been through the last seven years, I should never have made another Olympic team,” she said in an interview with The cutshared that Nassar’s relevance in the media played a major role in holding her back. “It was too much. But I would not let him take anything I have worked for since I was 6 years old. I would not let him take that joy from me. So I pushed past it for as long as my mind and my body would let me. “

Simone Biles gets honest about her gymnastics career. (Photo: Getty Images)

Before the Olympics, Biles had talked about the responsibility she felt performing as a member of the American gymnastics team after the organization failed to protect athletes from sexual assault, including herself. She even told it Glamor magazine that despite her relinquishment, she tended to stay with the organization to serve as a reminder of the work to be done to improve her culture of abuse. Still, she would not have imagined the toll the pressure would have on both her body and mind when it came to her Olympic performance.

“It was hard to be mentally in the gym for a few days,” Biles said, sharing that she had been in therapy to cope with these challenges. When it was time to go to Tokyo, she felt she was prepared. “I’m good enough to go,” she recalls, telling her therapist. “And they were like, ‘Yeah, you’re good enough to go and do your thing, but you have to come back.’ And I was like, ‘No, I’m fine.’ “

Still, Biles felt an accumulation of anxiety when it came time to compete. After her appearance on the vault and her decision not to continue competing, she assures that it was not just a mood that led her there. “If I still had my air consciousness and I just had a bad day, I would have continued. But it was more than that,” she said. “My perspective has never changed so quickly from wanting to stand on a podium to being able to go home alone, without crutches.”

The phenomenon of losing her way through the elements she has practiced countless times before is hard to explain. However, as soon as she could not perform properly, she knew what was at stake.

“I was not physically fit. Every time we tried, my body was like, Simone, chill. Sit down. We do not. And I’ve never experienced that, “she explained. It’s so dangerous. It is basically life or death. It’s a miracle I landed on my feet. If it was another person, they would have gone out on a stretcher. As soon as I landed that vault, I went and said to my coach, ‘I can not continue.’ “

But as the greatest gymnast ever and the most ornate in just 24 years, her skill is just as inexplicable.

“It’s a little unheard of to win as many things as I have. I do not physically understand how I do it,” she said of her abilities. “It was a god given talent.”

As difficult as it has been to nurture that talent, Biles is coming to terms with the fact that it will be just as difficult to work on the toll that the sport has inflicted on her mental health.

“This will probably be something I work through for 20 years. No matter how much I try to forget. It’s an ongoing work,” she said. “It means sacrificing some of that star. But at the end of the day, you can’t have it all. And if you take care of your mental well-being first, the rest falls into place.”

In the process, she has even become a voice for those struggling with mental health, proving that it takes a tremendous amount of strength to deviate from people’s expectations of her.

“I did not want to change anything because everything happens for a reason. And I learned a lot about myself – courage, resilience, how to say no and speak for yourself,” she said, reminding herself that she is still GOOD . “At the end of the day, to perform everything I’ve done? That talent probably can not be matched yet. Looking at my stats, especially in gymnastics, where it’s so damaging-I’ve never had a huge injury stop me from a big meeting. To be so healthy for so many years? It never happens. It will be a long time for someone to achieve what I have achieved. “

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