The decorated gymnast has been training on a rigid schedule for years and was looking forward to resting after the competition, she told the Associated Press.
“It’s a letdown,” she said. “It’s hard to keep looking at that like, ‘We have another year.’ ”
Biles admitted that “nothing is really set in stone yet” when it comes to competing in the games next summer.
“We’re trying to figure out the right training regiment just so mentally and physically we can try and stay on top of our game,” she explained. “We’re just playing it by ear and really just listening to my body.”
On Monday, the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) executive board met to finalize the postponement and announced that the Summer Olympics were officially rescheduled for July 23 through August 8, 2021. They first announced the games would be postponed until 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic last week.
The 23-year-old told the outlet that she “was ready after three months to be done” and having to wait another year is “a lot for elite athletes.”
“It feels more than a year on your body, trust me,” she explained. “Especially gymnastics, the impact we take. It’s your whole entire body, it’s not just your legs or your feet or your arms, we have to make sure your whole body is in check.”
Now, Biles said she feels “there is a kind of pressure” on her, especially since she’s going to be another year older at next summer’s games.
However, she’s going to be training safely in the coming year, making sure her health comes first.
“I know some people who are like, ‘I’m going to sneak in the gym and take the fine,’ this or that,” Biles said. “You have to be careful around other people.”
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Physical training isn’t everything either, she added. Preparing herself mentally to wait an extra year is another feat in itself.
“It will be mentally challenging pushing for another year because we mentally prepared all of those tactics for this year,” she said.
“To take your foot off the gas and reset, it’s hard because I was emptying my gas tank and we need to find ways to fill that back up.”
The delay is unprecedented, marking only the fourth time in modern Olympic history that the games have been disrupted. Still, the Summer Games will also continue to be called “Tokyo 2020,” even as they are moved to 2021.
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