Aly Raisman talks with Madison Kocian while arriving at the airport in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Wednesday afternoon (July 27).
The 22-year-old gymnast was voted team captain for the team, for her second straight Olympic games.
“Found out through @USAGym Twitter I’m captain again :) thanks guys @gabrielledoug @Simone_Biles @MadisonKocian @lzhernandez02 #USA #RIO2016,” Aly wrote on Twitter before sharing another team pic from Olympic processing.
As she showed off a behind-the-scenes look, the 22-year-old gymnast wrote about her past experience with body acceptance.
Aly wrote, “New @reebok campaign coming soon for the new shoe #ZPrint ….can’t believe this is my life now. this photo hasn’t been retouched or photoshopped in ANY way. Just a good insta filter and hard work ;) This photo is for any girl (gymnast) that’s ever been told by the boys in her class that her muscles are weird because she’s stronger than anyone else.”
“I used to get so upset when I was in 5th grade because all the boys in my class teased me for being too strong :( Now I can’t imagine not looking this way because I wouldn’t be as good of a gymnast. My hard work and dedication to gymnastics has taught me to be proud of my body and all the hard work that goes into being fit and strong (mentally and physically) #loveyourself #WeAreAllBeautifulInOurOwnWay :)”
We love her message!
You can see images from Aly‘s older Reebok campaign below.
The 21-year-old Olympic gymnast, who was part of the Fierce Five during the 2012 London Summer Olympics, bared it all in a stunning shot for the glossy, and opened up about trying for the 2016 team.
“After one Olympics, most people are just burnt out,” she explained. “I’ll be 22 in the Olympics year. If I make the team, I’ll be the oldest U.S. gymnast. My body is a little bit more achy than it was before, but at the same time I feel like I’m smarter now and able to understand the recovery process. I always joke that I’m 21 going on 50.”
Aly added about her body image: “I’ve never had an eating disorder, and I’m proud of that. [And] instead of being insecure about my muscles, I’ve learned to love them. I don’t even think of it as a flaw anymore because it’s made me into the athlete that I am. I think imperfection is beauty.”