Allison Felix’s retirement plan has already begun.

Allison Felix hasn’t happened yet.

When she stepped off the track at the Tokyo Games in 2021, she won the 11th medal of her career, surpassing Carl Lewis to become the most decorated American track and field athlete in Olympic history.

Felix, 36, proved everything he had to prove. That his words could be a source of great concern for pregnant athletes. She could return to the Olympic podium in 32 weeks after giving birth to her daughter, Cameron, in an emergency cesarean section. That he could win medals by wearing his brand shoes.

After Tokyo, of course, it makes sense to hang its spikes, to spend the next decade immersed in its exploits.

But, this is Alison Felix.

There was something left to celebrate, something else to run the 400-meter victory leap. He announced his intentions on social media in April. “I want to say goodbye and thank the game and the people who have helped me that I know only one way – with one last run,” he wrote.

This weekend, she will kick off the celebration with the USA Outdoor National Championship, followed by the World Championships, to be held in Oregon in July, if all goes according to plan. This will be the first time this competition has been held. His coach, Bob Kersey, said the last season in the USA was appropriate.

On Wednesday morning, Felix announced his biggest commitment so far off track. She is now the owner and board member of Voice in Sport, an advocacy and mentoring company founded by Stef Strack that connects young female athletes with mentors who play professional sports and mental health, nutrition and sports science. Are experts.

“We’ve both tried to bring about change within existing systems, with some successes and some failures,” said Streak, a former Nike executive. “And we’re tied around the idea that it’s time to build the future that we want to see for our daughters.”

In an interview with The New York Times before his last national and world championship races, Felix discussed how he decided to leave the competition, how he discovered the power of his platform. What and what kind of legacy does she hope to leave?

This interview has been thickened and modified to make it clearer.

How did you decide to have another season after winning two more Olympic medals at the Tokyo Games? How was the decision process?

It was actually more difficult than I thought. I knew it was my last Olympics, but I wasn’t sure I wanted a second season. A lot of people were like, “Oh, it would be amazing to end up at home on home soil in Oregon.” And it sounded really good, but I was tired from last year and I didn’t know if I had it. I had never felt that way before. I wasn’t sure if it was just me fighting.

But I was talking to my coach, and he was like, “I really think you should do exactly like the final tour and enjoy yourself.”

Can you have fun with it? Can you resist a competitive drive when you stare at the line?

I’ve never really slowed down before. I have always been focused on this goal, whatever the goal for this year. And I don’t think I’ve really taken the time to just compliment and enjoy – to enjoy the journey and to enjoy the competition, and the fun isn’t tied to the fact that I win. Or necklaces. So that part is a very different experience for me. It has been very difficult. I’m just trying to remind myself not to miss out on enjoying this moment because it is.

Off the track, you have become a great advocate for female athletes and gender equality. But you said that to get there, it was a journey to feel comfortable using your voice and your platform. How did you start talking

I’ve never been to a place where I liked it. I was really, really scared. I had this moment when I was sitting in my daughter’s nursery, we had just arrived home from NICU, and I was going back and forth about talking and making options.

I think having a daughter, going through the crazy experience of being born, sitting there and watching her, it was kind of like where it was, I think I have to do it. Whatever the outcome, I’m just going to move on because I’m pretty sure it’s the right thing to do.

Your New York Times Opinion Piece, Which details the lack of maternal protection for new parents, was published in May 2019. Nike changed its policies in August, and countless athletic companies have developed new maternity policies. Did you expect such a wide change and appreciation from fellow players?

I was doing what I had to do and needed to do. I have several moments where I will be in the race and then the person I am competing with comes to me and says thank you and tell the story or some other details. And it just blows my mind because that’s how I am, wow, I never thought things would change so fast. I never thought I would have those moments, although I was hoping they would be for the women to come, I didn’t think she would tell me anything about it.

In the years that followed, you signed partnerships and deals with a handful of companies, and got your start. سائش. Who do you decide to work with now?

After all, with Nike, I felt like I was only going to do things that really made sense. I really wanted to think about everything. At this point, if it doesn’t feel authentic, it’s not something I’m interested in. It certainly took me a long time and a lot to learn to get to this place, but I am still there.

I understand the power of my platform and the power of my voice, and I want to use and benefit from it and really want to be responsible for what I say.

One of your biggest new partnerships – and promises of time – was announced this morning with your ownership. Sound in the game. How did you decide to sign such a large organization?

I want our young girls to be healthy and have the resources to focus on their mental health and nutrition in a healthy way. I think about my growing up, like I would be so excited if I had access to something like that. I think my mother must be very excited because I think a lot of parents want to put their child on the right track and it can be really confusing and difficult. And I think that’s really going to change things.

Now more than ever, we see young people want to make an impact and they want to use their voice and they want to act. And now I imagine that I would have a lot of time to join as a mentor and board member.

Tell us a little bit about the guidance that has helped you throughout your career.

Jackie Joyner-Chair has been my mentor for most of my career, and it has really impacted my life. She’s my coach’s wife, and I think she’s been advising me since I was 19 years old. Obviously I looked at her from an athletics point of view, but to build a relationship with her and to see if she cares about me – and not just how I’m doing on the track but a As a person – who just kept resonating and staying together. I

He has seen me progress, from a really shy girl looking at me in front of Congress. Every step of the way, I can count on Jackie. I can pick up the phone, and I can call it. I remember when I was just getting pregnant and Nike and going through it all, I was calling her several times and just saying, “I don’t know what’s going on,” and she’s always, always there for me. Was

He taught me how to do it for someone else.

The word “inheritance” is thrown out a lot when someone like you gets off track. What do you want your legacy to be?

I always thought I would be like, “Oh, this record or this Olympics or that,” and the last two years have changed that. I hope this is one of the things I try to do to make things better, to give up things better than when I came, and to really have a heart for people.

I think I’m trying to speak for people whose voices aren’t so loud. This is what I am most proud of, this is the most meaningful, and this is the thing that matters most at the end of the day.

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