Having already won 23 medals, including a record-setting 19 golds, Michael Phelps is pretty much unstoppable when it comes to competing in the Olympics. His age, however, may soon become an obstacle. Find out more here!
Believe it or not, Michael Phelps turned 31 in June. And that’s pretty remarkable for a number of reasons. He’s currently participating in his fifth Summer Olympics, which is a U.S. record among male swimmers because it’s so rare. Times typically get slower as an athlete ages. Luckily, Michael hasn’t experienced this sort of situation yet.
Most athletes, who compete in the same events that Michael is scheduled for, actually have an average age of under 22. Yet at 31, “[Michael’s] best time of 50.6 seconds in the 100-meter butterfly from the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing as a 23-year-old is only four-tenths of a second better than his best time at the 2016 U.S. trials as a 31-year old (51 seconds),” according to The Washington Post. So Michael Phelps hasn’t slowed down at all — it’s almost as if he has superpowers. But obviously, that can’t last forever.
This will likely be Michael’s last run in the summer games. Surprisingly, however, he’s not the oldest swimmer competing. Ryan Lochte is! Ryan turned 32 on Aug. 3, so he’s nearly a year older than Michael. Ryan hasn’t competed yet this summer, but he’s currently getting ready to go up against Michael Phelps in the 200-meter individual medley starting on Wednesday, Aug. 10. He may even compete in other team relays throughout the games.
Can you believe it? Two star swimmers are in their early 30s. That’s practically unheard of. But it’s real — and we’re oh so thankful for the presence in the Summer Olympics!
HollywoodLifers, are you surprised to learn Michael Phelps isn’t the oldest U.S. Olympics swim team member? Tell us below.