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#BLACKGIRLMAGIC: Olympic Sprinter Allyson Felix’s Post-Pregnancy Return Breaks World Record Held By Usain Bolt

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Talk about a comeback! Allyson Felix gave birth to a baby girl less than a year ago and she came back snatching world records. Deets inside…

Who said you can’t have kids and come back better than ever?

Olympic sprinter Allyson Felix took time off to make her family and then came back with a vengeance, proving women can be both moms and all-star athletes. Nike tried to throw salt in the game, penalizing her and other female track stars who were pregnant. Now, they’re eating her dust.

The 33-year-old sprinter snatched up a world record held by a MAN - and not just any man. The world’s fastest man. And she did it just 10-months after giving birth. #BlackGirlMagic!

Allyson competed in Team USA’s mixed-gender 4x400m relay team that won the gold at the IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar.

 

The win secured Allyson’s 12th gold medal at the world championships, which pushed her past Usain Bolt’s record for the most gold medals of any athlete at the track and field world championships. Yasssss!

Allyson’s return comes after a difficult pregnancy. She had to undergo a C-section at 32 weeks because she suffered from severe pre-eclampsia, which threatened the lives of her and her baby. Thankfully, everything went OK. She and her husband,  Kenneth Ferguson, welcomed their daughter, Camryn, in November.

Allyson officially returned to competing back in July – eight months after welcoming her baby girl.

Back in May, Allyson wrote an op-ed piece in the New York Times, where she shared what her pregnancy journey was like as a professional athlete. She blasted Nike for trying to get rid of her after she became pregnant.

In part, she wrote:

I felt pressure to return to form as soon as possible after the birth of my daughter in November 2018, even though I ultimately had to undergo an emergency C-section at 32 weeks because of severe pre-eclampsia that threatened the lives of me and my baby.

Meanwhile, negotiations were not going well. Despite all my victories, Nike wanted to pay me 70 percent less than before. If that’s what they think I’m worth now, I accept that.

What I’m not willing to accept is the enduring status quo around maternity. I asked Nike to contractually guarantee that I wouldn’t be punished if I didn’t perform at my best in the months surrounding childbirth. I wanted to set a new standard. If I, one of Nike’s most widely marketed athletes, couldn’t secure these protections, who could?

Nike declined. We’ve been at a standstill ever since.

Ironically, one of the deciding factors for me in signing with Nike nearly a decade ago was what I thought were Nike’s core principles. I could have signed elsewhere for more money.

After Allyson and the other female track stars spoke out, Nike said they would do more to protect female athletes’ during and after pregnancy.

“Last year we standardized our approach across all sports to support our female athletes during pregnancy, but we recognize we can go even further,” the company said in a statement. “Moving forward, our contracts for female athletes will include written terms that reinforce our policy.”

The track mom wasn’t the only mom to cop a win at the world championships. Jamaican sprinter Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce celebrated her win in the 100-meter race with her 2-year-old son. She called it a "victory for motherhood.”  Sweet!

Following their victories, Allyson and Shelly-Ann snapped a girl power photo together:

 

Congrats ladies!

So yeah, having a baby isn’t the “kiss of death” for all athletes. It made Allyson Felix better.

Photo: Andrew Makedonski / Shutterstock.com

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