Simone Biles Reflects on Tokyo Olympics 1 Month Later: 'I Wouldn't Change Anything for the World'
On Saturday, the 24-year-old decorated gymnast opened up about her experience at the Games last month in a candid Instagram post.
Sharing a photo of her two medals — a silver for women's artistic team all-around and a bronze for women's balance beam — Biles began the caption of her post, writing, "Can't believe it's already been a month. Definitely not the way I planned the olympics going but I wouldn't change anything for the world 🤎."
"I'm proud of myself and the career I've had thus far. This olympics doesn't erase the past accomplishments I've achieved nor does it define who I am as an athlete," she continued. "I've pushed through so much the past couple years, the word quitter is not in my vocabulary."
Added Biles: "For some of you that may be how you define me but keep talking because I can't hear you over my 7 olympic medals which tied me for the most decorated gymnast EVER as well as most decorated American gymnast 😊🤭."
In the comments section, Biles received an outpouring of support from fans and celebrity supporters alike.
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Fans, meanwhile, commended Biles for her athletic performance, as well as recognizing the need to step down for her own mental health.
"Yes Simone !!! Keep inspiring simply by being your badass self 🐐," one fan said while another added, "YASS QUEEN 🔥🔥🔥 We love you and are so proud of you!!!!❤️❤️."
During the Tokyo Summer Olympics, Biles removed herself from four out of five event finals in Japan to recover from the "twisties" — a disorienting condition athletes can experience when they lose understanding of their air awareness, which puts them at risk of injury when they land.
The move by the famed athlete showed fans and fellow sportspersons — no matter the discipline — that the fitness required to compete is not only physical but also mental.
While recently chatting with PEOPLE, Biles opened up about prioritizing mental health in and out of a sports culture that has taught many to push through struggles to achieve peak performance.
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"Sometimes when we speak on these things, then we become the face of it. I'm not sure if I'm completely ready for that aspect of it," she shared.
"Over the years, obviously, since I've been so dominant everybody supports the gymnastics and praised me for what I've done in the gym and not really outside," Biles added. "Then once I took a step back, I obviously was expecting to feel a lot of backlash and embarrassment. But it's the complete opposite. That's the first time I felt human. Besides Simone Biles, I was Simone, and people kind of respected that."