The Tokyo Olympics was postponed for a year due to COVID-19. Now, Olympians Kelley O’Hara & Colleen Quigley reveal how Team USA is coping with the change.
Olympic gold medalist Kelley O’Hara, 31, told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that the reaction from her teammates on the U.S. Women’s Soccer team to the Tokyo Olympics being pushed until 2021 was very level headed. “It’s kind of like, oh man, that’s so crazy but then it’s just like back to business as usual.” The Utah Royals player, who spoke to HL while promoting her new partnership with Beast Brands, explained: “Whenever we have to expect to be peaking and at our best that’s when we’re going to do it. So there really hasn’t been a lot of back and forth with the team on it…at the end of the day, it is what it is.”
Team USA indoor mile champion Colleen Quigley, 27, who previously competed in the 2016 Olympics, told HL how a Zoom call with hundreds of her fellow competitors helped change her mind about the postponement. “Hearing about how athletes from other sports have been affected by the closing of pools, gyms, etc., it became apparent to me that a postponement to the games would make a lot of sense. That really helped me change my perspective from one that was against a postponement to one where now I see how this is the best thing for all those involved – the athletes, our community and the world.”
Kelley echoed Colleen’s sentiments and told HL, “let’s make sure that everybody can stay safe and healthy. We can be individually doing our part in the bigger collective to help end this as quickly as possible and flatten the curve. And that is the most important thing. At the end of the day sports are sports but this thing is life and death and we all play a part in contributing to how long this is around.”
When it comes to their training both athletes revealed that things have drastically shifted. “We don’t know when we will be able to get back on the track to race at all yet,” Colleen told HL, “so for the time being my teammates and I have gone back to more of a base-building phase of training, with longer workouts to build strength and increase our aerobic base. We usually do this type of training more in the fall, but it seems like a good time to build in extra base and become super strong athletes and build in speed into our training later when we know when we will be able to race.”
Kelley is staying active but told HL she’s not stressing over it. “We’re not gonna be playing soccer anytime soon and it’s probably not the smartest choice to be trying to kill myself to stay game fit. So, in the past week I’ve kind of shifted my mindset to just staying active, healthy and fit. I’m not in this lifting, running, training mode because I know that that will come later, when I can have access to that. But right now no one has access to a gym or fields or training so I just bought myself a bike yesterday and went on my first bike ride so very excited about that. Just trying to find ways to stay active to stay fit but not stress over it right now.”
Kelley will also be keeping busy working as the VP of Engagement and Product Strategy for Beast Brands. She told HL she’s excited to help tackle the notorious pink tax women traditionally pay on products aimed strictly at women by helping the brand go unisex. “When I finally got to try their products, I was like, oh great, these are legit. These are super nice. I loved everything about the products. They’re just so high quality. They are predominantly naturally based and and I got really excited about that. And just the idea of being able to work with more of a masculine focused brand and help them to move towards a unisex brand. To be able to help them create products. I love different types of grooming products. But there’s the notion of a pink tax for females on a lot of brands that cater towards women, they’ll up-charge women, because they know that they can. So I was really excited about the prospect of working with Beast to create really incredible products that would be unisex. And then just having a say and having a voice, and being able to affect change in a company, and help steer the direction that we go with as for me, sustainability is a big thing and they are already focused on that.”
Beast Brands is also doing their part to give back and support those in the fight against the virus by donating 1000 Liter-Sized-All-In-One soaps to organizations that help keep people safe and healthy! The are asking their Instagram followers to nominate organizations, charities, foundations and hospitals for the donations.