Olympic sprinter Allyson Felix reflected on her experience of being a mother and an Olympic athlete simultaneously in a video interview before the Tokyo Olympic Games where she is vying for gold again.

Felix, who shares a daughter, Camryn Grace, with her husband Kenneth Ferguson, said that being a mother and an Olympic competitor has had its ups and downs, but noted that her daughter is her number one motivation.

“For me, being [Camryn’s] mom is the number one job that I have. It’s my biggest accomplishment and it’s amazing. It’s been also really challenging, trying to figure out how to do both at the same time, but I’ll be able to look back and tell her about this journey … that she’s been on as well and it hasn’t been an easy one. There’s been a lot of fights, a lot of challenges along the way, but she has been the driving force to be able to get through that and she’s really helped me find my voice and allowed me to do things bigger than wanting to run fast, so I’m just so grateful for the blessing that she is and excited as we get closer for her to experience all this.”

Due to the pandemic, it was unclear whether families would be able to support the athletes in person. When asked if she was taking Camryn with her to the Tokyo Olympics, she said she wasn’t sure (she ultimately was not allowed to take her daughter).

“I’m not completely clear, I’ll say, on what actually is going to happen,” she said. “Information has kind of been trickling in and I guess for me I’ve just been trying to prepare for that. When you kind of dream of the situation and if I’m fortunate enough to make this fifth Olympic team. The driving force has been this idea that [Camryn] would be there and that I imagine seeing her at the track, but obviously no one knew a pandemic would be coming and so it’s not an ideal situation for anyone, and it’s something that we’re all faced with and, for me, my family will just have to adjust to whatever that means. As far as other moms, I haven’t talked to any yet, since we’re not exactly sure what that means, but obviously, I would be most sensitive to moms who are breastfeeding, new moms, moms with very small babies. I know how crucial that is, I know for me, when I competed when [Camryn] was under a year old, you need to be near your child and so I hope that … that will be taken into consideration for those mothers.”

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