McDonald's Binges and Downtime with the Final Five: Swimmers Maya DiRado and Conor Dwyer Share Behind-the-Scenes Olympics Moments
Maya DiRado and Conor Dwyer share their favorite cheat meals and other Olympic sports to watch in a People Live interview
One and done.
U.S. swimmer Maya DiRado earned an impressive four medals at the Rio summer Olympics, her first – and last – time on the world stage. And, unfortunately, not even the fun of the athletes’ village could persuade her to give it another go in 2020.
DiRado and fellow Team U.S.A. swimmer Conor Dwyer, gave PEOPLE the full behind-the-scenes scoop on their time in Brazil, Monday, during a Facebook Live chat – including why the former is ready to retire at 23.
“I’m really going to retire, it feels very good to say that and think about new things. But this is so much fun and I could not have asked for a better Olympics,” DiRado says, noting that she’ll start a new job at McKinsey and Co., an Atlanta, Georgia, management consulting firm, in January.
Now, she and Dwyer, 27, are happy to reflect on a successful run in Rio. Dwyer took the gold in the men’s 4x100m freestyle relay and bronze in the 200m men’s individual freestyle, while DiRado took gold in the women’s 4x200m freestyle relay and in the 200m backstroke, a silver in the 400m individual medley and a bronze in the 200m individual medley.
During the Olympics, the pair mingled with other Team U.S.A. athletes, including the Final Five.
“They’re fun, nice, good girls and they killed it too,” Dwyer says of the athletes (Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman, Simone Biles, Laurie Hernandez and Madison Kocian), who took team gold in the women’s gymnastics.
Dwyer and DiRado brushed shoulders with more than just competitors from their own country, though, cohabitating with some of the world’s champions in the athletes’ village.
“U.S.A. has its own building, so you kind of go there and do your own thing,” DiRado says. “But in the dining hall everybody eats together, everybody’s there at the same time. So it’s really cool to just walk around and see all the different athletes and kind of guess what sport they play.”
Not a fan of a cafeteria? There was also a McDonald’s in the village, which drew lengthy lines almost all day long, according to Dwyer.
“I crushed some McDonald’s,” he says. “That was my first cheat meal.”
In fact, Dwyer and his roommates – Michael Phelps and Jimmy Feigen – developed a trade-off system to get their fix.
The swimming teammates are all quite close, Dwyer and DiRado say.
“Everybody has kind of grown up swimming together,” DiRado says. “You swim against these people for forever.”
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Both, though, are excited for some downtime. While Dwyer will spend some time surfing (his “secret talent”!), DiRado has plans to get some ink.
“I think I’m gonna get my tattoo this week, we’re gonna find a place in Brooklyn,” she reveals, explaining that she hopes to get the Olympic rings – a tattoo Dwyer already has. “It’s kind of like a big tradition among the swim team, at least, it’s a big deal for the swimmers.”
Dwyer will be back in the pool in less than a month, though.
He says, “I’m on for 2020.”