Running a race – whatever the track or field – is nothing new for Allison Felix. The most decorated runner in American history has always approached every aspect of her life with the same tenacity and verve as an athlete. As co-founder saishA sneaker company for and for women, Felix is exploring new ways to use everything she has learned to build a fairer world and space where supporting women is the first principle to cross the finish line.
On August 3, Felix spoke at the panel Shoe newsThe Women Who Rock event in New York, remembering – among other things – the courage she showed when she spoke out against Nike’s lack of maternity protection during her contract with them (Felix welcomed her daughter Camryn in 2018). KristenBellTattoos.com was privileged to speak with Felix about what it was like to move forward with this next chapter of her life, her surprise comeback from retirement and how she grew into the businesswoman she is today in front of the panel and the athlete has evolved into an entrepreneur. determination and drive were more than ever inspiring.
“You will have bumps in the road, you will have adversity. I was very familiar with it as an athlete,” she told us. “So I’m excited to introduce this to the business world. And to know it’s really about your team and how you’re going to handle this storm because it’s definitely coming.”
Read our full talk.
KristenBellTattoos.com: You recently competed in the women’s 4×400 relay at the 2022 World Championships in Athletics. What was it like getting back on the track?
Allison Felix: It was really good! It was a lot of fun just being there and having the World Cup in Oregon. There was just so much love. So I really liked it.
SK: Do you think it will be possible to convince you to compete again in the future?
AF: Absolutely not. [Laughs.] Here it is. But I feel very good with him [being my last race]. I had such a pleasant time; I feel so satisfied. It was a really amazing, funny way to end. [my athletic career]. These days I will run with my daughter and do my usual things.
SK: Your daughter, Kamryn, was in the stands cheering you on during the race. How did you feel when she was with you?
AF: It was the best. I think this is the first season where she really understands applause and stuff like that. She was totally into it, just watching the races and taking it all in. I think it was even more special that I was able to end on that note and she [there] as part of the process.
SK: As an athlete, you’ve developed so many skills over the course of your career – focus, endurance, work ethic – how do you think these qualities fit into this new chapter of your life?
AF: I think you really need to be resilient and just win in every aspect of life. You will have bumps in the road, you will have hardships. As an athlete, this was very familiar to me. So I’m excited to bring this to the business world. And to know that it’s really about your team and how you’re going to handle this storm, because it’s definitely coming.
SK: Are there any new self-care methods you developed as you embarked on this new path in your career?
AF: I think just understanding that rest is not a negative thing. It doesn’t mean you’re weak or anything like that. And I think just understanding that it makes you better. We all need time to freshen up, to prioritize our own mental health. I think it’s getting a little more normal. And I hope that in the future his presence will be even greater. But it really mattered to me. And postpone this time.
S.K.: What was the most important boundary you have set for yourself lately?
AF: Even just borderline type I’m not going to work in bed. Once I’m in bed, I’m not going to get up with my laptop and do anything else. But really sticking to those boundaries. It’s hard. They are very easy to break. But this is one that I think is a game changer.
SK: What progress have you made towards a fairer world in business and sports?
AF: In the space I’m in right now, I’m really seeing little change in maternity and paternity policies in general. Seeing that we support more [maternity protections] and really insists on it. Obviously, this was my main goal when I was on the track. Bringing this to the business world and ensuring that at Saysh, this is something we can really be proud of and support and promote across the industry.
SC: What do you think is the most important lesson you can pass on to your daughter Kamryn that will stay with her for the rest of her life?
AF: Lots of lessons. One really important thing that I pass on to her is her confidence and self-esteem. I really want to show her a diverse group of people – women – and that power looks different. I just really want to create her in such a way that she feels that she has no limits and that she can do whatever she wants.
Before you go, click here to see Team USA Olympians over the years.