Ana Peleteiro: “Being an athlete and a mother is very difficult, but so is being a worker and a mother” |  Sports

Ana Peleteiro: “Being an athlete and a mother is very difficult, but so is being a worker and a mother” | Sports

Ana Peleteiro: “Being an athlete and a mother is very difficult, but so is being a worker and a mother” |  Sports

The paths to perfection follow labyrinths that moralists so lofty, so blind, do not see, Ana Peleteiro was always told: not like that, Ana. We continue to tell him that now. When he appeared in an Almodovar film. When she announced she was pregnant. When, horrified, they discovered that during the pregnancy, the athlete had become influencer, queen of the networks with her more than 400,000 followers on Instagram. Either an athlete or celebrity, they warned. “Athlete and celebrity” she replied. “And also mom. And stronger than ever. “Every person has their own path.”

“I make more money from social media than from athletics, that’s a reality, and what I don’t want is for that to stop when I stop winning medals,” she said as soon as she returned to high competition, and Lúa, her daughter, has been 14 months now. “And of course I want to continue winning medals for many more years. » With a jump of 14.32 meters, she has already become champion of Spain again and qualified for the World Indoor Championships in Glasgow in March, and in June the European Championships await her in Rome and in August, the Paris Games.

He achieves everything despite everyone.

That’s where you’re wrong, they told her at the age of 16 when, recently proclaimed junior world triple jump champion (and she already reached 14.17 meters), Ana Peleteiro showed, in addition to her wonderful qualities athleticism, his talent, a character and a strong personality that broke. Conflicts were inevitable. Athletics, his life, became overwhelming. Even the world didn’t understand her, always trying to find herself, and she didn’t understand the world either. In June 2013, Peleteiro finished his secondary studies and left Galicia and Abelardo Moure, his usual coach, to train in Madrid with Juan Carlos Álvarez; He left Madrid in April 2016 to go to Lisbon with João Ganço, who in his training group also guided Nelson Évora, Olympic champion in Beijing 2008; Six months later, he decided to return to Spain, to a villa in Guadalajara, where he went to live. He hadn’t jumped as long as he did at 16 in almost five years. He was not yet 21 and Peleteiro was already working with the fourth coach of his career, Iván Pedroso. It will be bad for him, those who felt wise, those who were always wrong, predicted in a puritanical way. Peleteiro, a Galician from Ribeira, claimed his African blood; His association with the Cuban gene of his coach, the false relaxation that Pedroso promotes, was his best complement.

“More than anything, I knew her for many years before I started working with her,” recalls Pedroso after almost seven years of joint work so fruitful that it allowed Peleteiro, who is 28 years old, to be the one of the best athletes in the world, Olympic medalist and brand owner, 14.87 meters, already at a high level. “I knew what she was like, I knew what her character was… and since she arrived, I already knew how to work with her. When there are hurts, discomforts, conflicts, you should never get stressed and think that the world is going to end there, and want to solve problems in a day. There are problems that can be solved in a day and others that can be solved in a month, but always face them calmly , relaxed, so that things go better. She joined the group of athletes that we had, including Yulimar Rojas, the best saltadora of the story, and a little bit of it has entered into a dynamic that is more, more, more, This is where I’m interested, more than anything.”

The human body is wise, and hormones even more so. Mothers are stronger than all other women. Athletes who leave motherhood come back stronger. “It’s like that with Ana, who has also found her strong point, which is speed. It’s faster than ever. She is more focused and more motivated. “Lúa makes her stronger,” says Pedroso, who rarely told her that you were bad, Ana. “Each person plans their life as they see fit. With Ana we talk about everything, we discuss it in advance. Ana knows that she has to sacrifice certain things. She knows that she should have time to rest and that a girl is a bonus for more work. Trust between coach and athlete is the key to their results. Now I understand her better than at the beginning, when I had to be more serious, and she listens to me . And she is more mature. It’s a difficult decision for athletes. The woman is the one who gives birth, the one who has to breastfeed… but the girl is already running, almost talking… The hardest part of parenthood has already passed.

Ana Peleteiro, last summer, during a photo shoot for SModa.

“The first six months after giving birth I laughed at the idea that mothers are stronger and said I didn’t know who made up that lie, but now I notice that in some aspects I am stronger. And I don’t know if it’s because I gave birth or because I’m also trying harder than before. When I go to the track, I focus all my energy on training and before, it was more scattered. Motherhood has given me a lot of focus. Maybe I’m stronger because I’ve been a mother or maybe because I train more and put in more effort than before,” the athlete explains. “I’m a lot less angry. When something doesn’t go the way I want, I ignore it, I say, damn, if I have a great job, I’m very lucky to be able to devote myself to what I love the most, but this is not what I live from and it doesn’t stop me from living. At home, my family is waiting for me with a smile. If being a high-level athlete does not allow you to create your family, to have connections and a healthy circle, everything ends in frustration. I live without frustration. “Having a family around me that makes me happy helps me downplay athletics. »

Peleteiro learned to understand the world. The world has no choice but to understand it.

“The person who comes back is a completely different person, because motherhood changes you in every way, for better or worse. Fourteen months after giving birth, I have already managed to stabilize myself emotionally and physically,” she explains. “It was like starting from scratch, because my delivery was by cesarean section and it was a complicated delivery. When I was told that I would have to have a cesarean section, I was a bit gloomy, as I feared that the recovery would be much slower, but I had no setbacks. What I always said has happened, if they give me health and a baby who sleeps well, I know I will come back. I know I will be the same as before.

Neither moralist nor moralizer, Peleteiro flees easy temptation in his networks. “I’m not trying to be an example of anything. I share my reality, I share my daily life, and if there are people who identify with my life, which seems completely natural and normal to me, then so much the better. Social media is a space where people inspire each other in very positive ways but also in very negative ways. Being an athlete and being a mother is very difficult, yes, but it is also very difficult to work a normal job and be a mother, and this happens to all women. Motherhood is complicated, the balance between professional and private life is very difficult”, explains the athlete who, as a member of the Spanish team, benefits from the help of the Superior Sports Council to hire a babysitter while she and her husband, also triple jumper Benjamin Compaoré, train and compete. “There are many sportswomen who perhaps do not dare to be mothers because of their economic situation, because that they could not afford to have a caregiver at home and pay them a thousand euros per month to look after their children.”

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