Michael Phelps, winner of 18 gold medals, is reportedly preparing for his big comeback.
Over the past several months, the Olympic swimmer underwent a series of drug tests. This suggests that Phelps is getting ready for some sort of competition. Could he possibly be preparing for a stint at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro?
According to CNN, Michael Phelps has tested twice with the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) since the beginning of July. If everything checks out, then the swimmer could begin competing as early as next March. However, Phelps and his coach aren’t confirming anything at the moment.
“Nothing is set in stone. If I decide to keep going and swim again, then I’ll compete. If I don’t, I guess I’ll re-retire. Just don’t compare me to Brett Favre,” he recently told The Associated Press.
Despite rumors that Michael Phelps is currently preparing to compete at the upcoming Summer Olympics, coach Bob Bowman revealed that it’s still too soon to say anything official on the matter. However, the swimmer reportedly lost around 15 pounds while training at the North Baltimore Aquatic Club.
Bowman told USA Today:
“What we’re doing is kind of letting him have his options. He came back this fall and started to do some training with the group, mainly just to get in shape. He just felt like he was not fit. He wasn’t. He’s occasionally been training. He’s picked it up a little more. We were just thinking about it, and I said, ‘You know, you’re getting in pretty good shape, maybe you want to swim in a meet?’ He said, ‘Well, maybe at some point.'”
After winning several medals at the 2012 Summer Olympics, Michael Phelps decided to retire from professional competition. He told the folks at Sports Illustrated last year that he didn’t want to continue competing after he turns 30.
“No. I’ve always said I don’t want to swim past 30 and I know if I go one more, I’ll be over 30. I don’t want to ever be that person where people are like, God, he’s this old and he’s still doing it or he’s been around for this long,” Phelps explained.
He continued, “So once I’m able to accomplish the goals that I have, if I can look back at my career and say I’ve been successful, that’s all that matters to me.”
What do you think about Michael Phelps possibly coming out of retirement? Do you think the swimmer will end up competing at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro?