All Articles Tagged "Allyson Felix"

Going For The Gold In Parenting: From The Mom Of Olympic Medalist Allyson Felix

August 23rd, 2016 - By Kweli Wright
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Allyson Felix 1

By Marlean Felix

There’s a famous quote that says motherhood is like watching your heart walk outside your body. Well, my journey with Allyson has felt more like a 400-meter heat and I couldn’t be more proud.

I’m often asked what it takes to raise a child with exceptional talent and drive. While I’m no expert, I’m very pleased to partner with Bounty, a brand that is giving me an opportunity to share my parenting experience with the world:

Never take your eye off their baton. Our children are surrounded by outside influences all the time – teachers, friends, social media – but the attention that matters most to them is yours. It’s key to recognize and nurture their gifts, whatever they may be. Your consistent acknowledgment will make them feel like a champion

Cultivate your village. Our nuclear family would not have been able to back Allyson’s talents without the encouragement, assistance and prayers of our very own village. Moms who have a loving support system bring more of their best selves to child rearing which is what it takes to go for the gold…in parenting. This summer, I’m recognizing #mygoldmedalvillage on social media and invite you to do the same.

Allyson Felix 2

It’s OK to let them fall. Each child is exceptional in his or her own way – exceptional, not perfect. It’s important for us moms to allow them to make mistakes, experience setbacks and develop rebound skills. Allyson’s can-do spirit is something I’m especially proud of.

Teach them to hold their heads — and expectations — high. There are issues African American parents face that others don’t have to think about unless they are raising a Black child. We guide them with the understanding the outside world may judge and treat them harshly. That’s why it’s critical that we instill in them a sense of pride, cultural confidence and sure-footedness to lift them up during difficult times.

Never give up. Being tired is time to rest, not to quit. Quitting is never an option. Actually Allyson taught me that.

All moms want the same things for our children — for them to be happy, healthy, kind, trustworthy and successful human beings. And while the Olympic gold medal isn’t every child’s destiny, the loving support of Mom and village can be.

If you have an inspiring Olympic story to share or a parenting story, please use #MyGoldMedalVillage.

9 Things Black Women Did To Close Out The Olympics That Made Us Proud

August 22nd, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Honor to run with these phenomenal women! So proud! #teamusa

A photo posted by Allyson Felix (@af85) on

With 121 medals earned, 54 more than Great Britain, which came in second in the medal count, it’s safe to say that the U.S. pretty much dominated the Olympics in Rio. Many of those gold medals were earned by Black women who broke records and made history along the way. And watching them do big things, from saying “Black Girls Rock” while collecting their gold medals on the podium, to embracing one another as a sisterhood, and even showing the world the diversity in Black beauty and Black bodies, their success could literally bring tears of joy to your eyes. And at a time in this country when we’re often left feeling much less than respected, shining on the main stage was something all of us needed to witness to be encouraged, and to be reminded that anything is possible when you put your mind to it.

So, wrapping up our weekly (see here and here) coverage of the Olympics, here a few more of the amazing things African-American women did in Rio to help close out the 2016 games in Rio.

“It’s Part Of The Sport”: Shaunae Miller Responds To People Calling Her A “Cheater” Over Gold Medal-Winning Dive

August 17th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Allyson Felix

(AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

We already told you about the controversy that was Allyson Felix taking home a silver medal in the 400m race on Monday night. After sprinting her way through the home stretch and appearing as though she might pass the Bahamas’ Shaunae Miller to take home gold, Miller ended up stumbling across the finish line. Because her torso crossed the line before Felix’s did when she leaned in, Miller ended up being the winner. Twitter went back and forth in debate about whether or not the dive was taking the easy way out.

When asked what she thought about the tumble, Felix told Today that she wasn’t used to seeing such a move. “It happens every now and then, but it’s not too common.”

Miller actually agrees. When speaking to Good Morning America this morning, she told T.J. Holmes that she had fallen one other time in racing, but it wasn’t a common occurrence for her. However, after powering her way through the race from start to finish, her legs just gave out on her near the very end. According to Miller, her fall was not an intentional one.

“It really wasn’t. Before going into the race, me and my coaches we sat down and discussed everything, what we were going to do,” she said. “I feel as though I executed the plan really well. When I got to the 300 first, 40 more meters to go, my legs were so heavy from going around so fast. I started to lose feeling in them. When I was heading toward the line all I saw was the line. I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, I’ve got to go!’ And afterwards I felt nothing at all in my legs. I started falling.”

When he asked if she would say that she basically stumbled her way to gold, she responded with “If that’s what they want to call it, that’s what happened. I just went really hard and tried to hold on for dear life.”

But if she had stayed on her feet, would she have won the foot race? Miller told Holmes that she wasn’t so sure.

“I can’t say,” Miller stated. “It was a really close race. Sometimes the diving can help, sometimes it doesn’t. I don’t know how it would have played out but it played out in my favor.”

And while some might say that it wasn’t right and not a good look for the sport, quite a few runners have dived through a finish line. That includes American sprinter Natasha Hastings (who came in fourth Monday night), who said she did it to ensure that she would qualify for the Olympics.

“I did it myself twice this year,” she said. “I dove [at the US Olympic trials] for my spot here. And I did it in indoor nationals as well. You do what you’ve got to do to get over the line.”

And as Miller told Holmes, “Sometimes it is like that. It’s a part of the sport. It’s legal in the sport so people go for it.”

With that in mind and a gold medal around her neck, Miller said she could only take the criticism she’s received since Monday evening in stride. She’s even chuckled at it, specifically all those memes.

“I was really surprised by it, but you know I don’t let things affect me,” she said. “I was reading them and I got a few laughs.”

Even those who Holmes pointed out have gone as far to call her a “cheater” can’t get her down.

“I saw that, but like I said, it’s part of the sport. It’s been done so many times,” she said. “You know, things happen. It’s track and field.”


The Bahamas’ Shaunae Miller Dives Her Way To Gold Over Allyson Felix And Twitter Isn’t Happy

August 16th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Allyson Felix

(AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

It was another evening of watching the Olympics with my fiancé last night, and one moment in particular had us, along with all of Twitter, talking.

Allyson Felix was the favorite to take home gold in the 400 meter race and become the most decorated American woman in track and field history. Within the last few seconds of the race, it looked like that was definitely going to happen. In the home stretch, Shaunae Miller from the Bahamas was running like a bat out of hell to the finish line, but Felix, coming from behind, caught up to her. As they prepared to cross the finish line, Miller either fell or dove across it. Either way, by doing so, she finished the race before Felix, who leaned in, could.

“WOW!” That’s exactly what the hubby and I said as the scores came in. Miller, tears of joy running down her face, stayed on the ground as she celebrated her victory. And while Felix was able to be a good sport and walk over to shake the hand of Miller and congratulate her, I would be lying if I said we thought the race came to a fair conclusion.

“How do you just throw your body over the line?” my fiance asked. “Is this a foot race or swimming?”

I took to Twitter to see what people had to say, and minutes after the race ended, just as I thought, people were debating if diving across the finish line was taking the easy way out:

“Don’t care if it’s legal, this is the most pathetic way to win a 400m race. You’re not sliding into home plate, lady,” said one man.

“Allyson Felix definitely won the foot race! Diving in is soooo weak smh” said another.

“Man that is NOT right. Allyson Felix had it all the way until ol girl decided to go swimming on the track,” said a young woman.

And that was about 12 hours ago. But the debates have expanded on Twitter as it was pointed out that Miller wasn’t the first runner to stumble through the finish line to win a medal:

And some people were just clowning in their angst:

But according to NBC News, American sprinter Natasha Hastings, who ran in Monday’s race and finished fourth, dove into first place to make the Olympic team at trials just last month.

It’s definitely legal. As pointed out by NBC Olympics rules, the winner is “The first athlete whose torso (as distinguished from the head, neck, arms, legs, hands or feet) reaches the vertical plane of the closest edge of the finish line.”

So despite how we all may feel, Miller took home gold, and she did indeed put on quite the performance from start to finish. As for Felix, she did snag silver and was still able to surpass Jackie Joyner-Kersee to become the most decorated track and field athlete with seven medals. She has another chance to go for gold this week in the 4x400m relay on Friday.

5 More Things Black Women Athletes Did In Week One Of The Olympics

August 15th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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AP Images

AP Images

With all the incredible things that have happened in the Olympic games so far, specifically for Black women, you definitely don’t want to miss out on all the history being made in just about every sport as they continue — swimming, track, field, gymnastics, judo, fencing and more. You name it, we’re pretty much dominating.

I’ve been tuning into the games with the help of the Samsung Gear VR. I obtained a panoramic view of some of the Olympic games’ biggest moments wearing the virtual reality headset. You literally look around and you’re sitting in the audience during everything from boxing matches and beach volleyball to gymnastic competitions. And outside of watching the Olympics, the VR is a great gadget for playing video games, watching movies, and even enjoying photos and videos you’ve taken on your Samsung phone. You can learn more about the awesome headset here.

But if you have missed out (with or without a virtual reality headset), here are some major moments that have happened since we ran down the first few accomplishments of Black female athletes last Monday during the opening weekend.

Rafaela Silva

AP Images – Wrapped in a Brazilian flag Giovana Silva, 4, center, cousin of the Brazilian Judo gold medalist Rafaela Silva is hugged by a friend as they stand next to her aunt Cristiane as she holds a poster of Rafaela Silva, at Cidade de Deus slum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Rafaela Silva

On Monday, Aug. 8, Rafaela became an international star after winning gold in the 57-kilogram division in women’s judo. It was the first gold medal Brazil took home in the Olympic games. A Black woman who grew up in the favelas and almost gave up judo due to racism she faced after the Olympics in London, the same people who called Silva “monkey” are now rallying behind her.

“They said I was an embarrassment to my family,” she said, “And now I’m an Olympic champion in my own home.”

Simone Manuel

(AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

Simone Manuel

After winning a history-making individual gold medal 100-meter freestyle, Simone Manuel went on to garner yet another gold and silver medal. That other gold came in the women’s 4×100-meter medley relay and the latter in the women’s 50-meter freestyle. Her Olympic run, an incredibly successful one, has come to an end. Manuel will return to Houston (and Stanford University) with four medals to show off.

Ibtihaj Muhammad

AP Images

Ibtihaj Muhammad

Muhammad is the first American athlete to compete in the Olympics wearing a hijab. And while she didn’t win gold in the women’s individual sabre fencing competition, she did help the USA’s women’s fencing team take home bronze on Saturday. She is now also the first American woman to win an Olympic medal wearing a hijab. As she told USA Today recently, “A lot of people don’t believe that Muslim women have voices or that we participate in sport. And it’s not just to challenge misconceptions outside the Muslim community, but within the Muslim community. I want to break cultural norms.”

She definitely has!

Michelle Carter

AP Images

Michelle Carter

Meet another history maker. Carter, 30, is the first American woman to win gold in the shot put, doing so more than 30 years after her father, Michael Carter, a former NFL player, won silver at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. As she told reporters, “Of course, I can’t wait until I get the medal and I can walk around the house and say, ‘Daddy, I got you.'”

Source: AP Images

Source: AP Images

Simone Biles

With the possibility of taking home five gold medals and becoming pretty much the greatest gymnast to ever do it, Simone Biles is well on her way to making all that happen. This past weekend, she took home her third gold medal, this time in the women’s vault. She became the first American woman to win on vault, as well as the first to take home three gold medals in a single Olympics in gymnastics. Coming up? She competes for gold in balance beam today, and in women’s floor exercise tomorrow.

Allyson Felix

AP Images

*Bonus! Allyson Felix

Tonight is the night! After sprinting her way to first place in the 400-meter dash semifinals, Felix will race for her seventh medal this evening. If she were to win (which she is seen as the favorite to do), Felix would become the most decorated woman in the history of track and field. And tonight won’t be her only shot to take home a medal. On Friday, she competes in the women’s 4×400-meter relay.

MN Daily Salute: Black Female Athletes

February 18th, 2013 - By Brande Victorian
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In honor of Black History Month, MadameNoire is sending a daily salute to the African American women who inspire us every day of the year. Today we’re recognizing the black women athletes who make us proud everywhere from the tennis courts to the track, the balance beams, and the swimming pool.

"Venus Williams PF"

Source: WENN

Venus and Serena Williams

Venus and Serena Williams took the tennis world by storm when the two brown girls from Compton with braid and beads showed up on the courts and dominated their opponents. Venus has been ranked World No. 1 in singles by the Women’s Tennis Association on three separate occasions, and when she was named so in 2002 for the first time, she became the first African American woman to achieve be given then title during the Open Era. Venus is also a four-time Olympic gold medalist and as of February 2013, is ranked number 22 in the world in singles.

Like her big sister, Serena has also ranked up a number of World No. 1 rankings — five to be exact since July 2002.  Serena is the only female player to have won over $40 million in prize money and she is regardedas one of the greatest tennis players of all time, having won 30 Grand Slam  titles and four Olympic Gold medals.

Is That You Bey? Athlete’s Recreate Famous Album Covers For ESPN’s Music Issue

February 6th, 2013 - By Brande Victorian
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Source: ESPN

Source: ESPN

You almost thought Beyonce got a quick suntan didn’t you? Don’t lie.

Well the truth is that’s Olympic Track & Field star Allyson Felix dressed up like Bey for ESPN The Magazine latest spread. The editorial for their February 18 Music Issue features today’s top athletes recreating classic album covers and we have to say they’ve done a pretty awesome job.

In addition to Allyson recreating 2003’s Dangerously in Love, ESPN included Tampa Bay Buccaneers NFL quarterback Josh Freeman as Michael Jackson during his Thriller days, motocross racer James Stewart as Rick James in Street Songs, and NFL players Trent Richardson (Seattle Seahwaks), Marshawn Lynch (Cleveland Browns) and LaMarr Woodley (Pittsburgh Steelers) as Run DMC. The mag also brought along Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte to recreate Nirvana’s Nevermind, NASCAR racecar driver Jimmie Johnson as Bob Dylan, Olympic Gold medal soccer player Alex Morgan as Katy Perry on her One of the Boys album cover,  and Major League Baseball players J. Upton, E. Longoria, B. Phillips, G. Stanton and S. Victorino as Devo.

Check out the cover side-by-sides on the next few pages. What do you think?

Who Run The World? Allyson Felix, Sanya Richards Ross and Brittney Reese Dominate Track and Field

August 9th, 2012 - By Alissa Henry
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"Allyson Felix"


Representation may still be maddeningly scant in other sports, but when it comes to track and field, Black women run the world. Literally. For some of our favorite US Olympic Track and Field athletes, this year is all about comebacks and victory.

26-year-old Allyson Felix (affectionately nicknamed “Chicken Legs” in high school) is now an Olympic gold medalist in the 200M dash. At the 2004 Athens Games, she won her first Olympic medal — a silver — in the women’s 200m dash. The following year, she won a silver medal again. Both times she lost to Jamaica’s Veronica Campbell Brown. This year, Allyson came back for the gold. And she got it on what is being recognized as one of the U.S.’s best nights in Olympic track and field history.

The Washington Post reports:

The U.S. track and field team grabbed a meet that was slipping away and completely turned it around with a staggering seven-medal haul that included three golds.

“Just a flood of emotions,” Felix said.

Individually, sure, but for the team as a whole as well. Felix’s victory in the women’s 200 meters — a victory that now supplants her silver medals in 2004 and 2008 — was the centerpiece of a night that also brought gold for Brittney Reese in the women’s long jump and Aries Merritt in the men’s 110-meter hurdles.

And the Americans merely beat other Americans, because Carmelita Jeter took bronze behind Felix; Janay DeLoach did the same behind Reese; and Jason Richardson followed Merritt to the line for silver.

Throw in a silver in the women’s 400-meter hurdles for Lashinda Demus — who was all of seven hundredths of a second behind gold medallist Natalya Antyukh of Russia — and the U.S. had one of the best nights in its Olympics track and field history.

With three days remaining, Americans already have 20 medals at Olympic Stadium, 11 from the women alone. That’s a bigger haul for the U.S. women’s track and field team in any Olympics other than 1984, which was diluted by the Soviet-led boycott.

"Brittney Reese"


Allyson isn’t the only one to see her dreams come true after a devastating loss (if you can call winning a silver medal at the friggin Olympics at 18 and 22 a loss). Long jump champion Brittney Reese told the Washington Post that after finishing fifth in Beijing, she cried all the way home. This year, she takes home the first gold since Jackie Joyner-Kersee in 1988:

Reese, a former basketball player at Ole Miss, committed fouls on four of her six attempts in the long jump finals, so anxious was she to push herself further into the pit. But her second leap was 23 feet, 41 / 2 inches. Even as Janay DeLoach and Russia’s Elena Sokolova took shot after shot, they couldn’t overcome it.

"Sanya Richards Ross"


Sanya Richards-Ross is another track and field athlete whose tears from 2008 turned into triumphs this year.

The 27-year-old is originally from Jamaica and came to the US when she was just twelve years old. In 2008, she competed in the 400 meter race and ended up being passed in the last 100 meters and walked away with a bronze medal. They found her crying under the stands. This year, she beat the defending champion and finished the race for the gold in 49.55 seconds. After her win, she told ESPN

“The run was phenomenal. It’s very, very challenging to get on the Olympic stage and give your best performance, to balance your emotions and physical. It’s a huge weight off my shoulders. I kept telling myself, `You are the champ. You are the champ.’ To go out there and actually accomplish it is really fantastic.”


"Claressa Shields"


Off the track and in the boxing ring, 17-year-old Claressa Shields won the first Middleweight Gold medal in women’s Olympic boxing. Sport. Sports Illustrated reports:

Shields shuffled, danced and slugged her way past her 33-year-old opponent, showing off the free-spirited style and brute strength that made her unbeatable at the London Games.

Shields even stuck her tongue out at Torlopova after ducking a few punches in the final round.

The teenager won the 12-member American team’s only gold medal in London. The winningest nation in Olympic boxing history got no medals from its men’s team for the first time, and flyweight Marlen Esparza won a bronze.

Shields has been on the international boxing scene for less than two years, but the Flint, Mich., native is among its fastest-rising stars. She lost early in the world championships, yet still qualified for the Olympics.

It’s been a great year for our female athletes in the Olympics and it’s not over yet!

Who were you rooting for the most this year?

 Follow Alissa on Twitter @AlissaInPink

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The Rundown: Rent in D.C. Could Be Going Down, Bank Profits On Mortgages Definitely Going Up

August 9th, 2012 - By Tonya Garcia
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Image: iStockphoto

-Yesterday, we had word about the ways in which banks hadn’t changed their mortgage practices when dealing with homeowners in foreclosure. Now we have the infuriating news that banks are actually making a fortune on mortgages nowadays despite record-low percentage rates. Why? Because the rates could be even lower, but the banks want to drive up profits. The Mortgage Bankers Association argues that banks incur more fees on loans than they did in the past, but less competition and sales of bundled financial products are working in their favor.

-Accessories, and accessory designers, are hot right now.

-New housing units in Washington DC may drive down rent prices in that city. DC will have 6,000 new units by the end of the year. This doesn’t mean that rent will be cheap. The average rent in DC right now is $1,501. The national average is $1,081. The average rent in Atlanta is $868.

-The New York City Mayor’s Office shut down a Trojan event in which free vibrators were being given away from “Pleasure Carts” across Manhattan. “Bloomberg doesn’t want anyone to have fun. You can’t have a giant soda. You can’t have a vibrator,” said one unhappy bar owner, Melody Henry. It’s worth reading the New York Post article about the shutdown if only to see how many awkward plays on words they can get into one small story.

-And in Olympics news,  Allyson Felix took gold in the 200-meter race. American Carmelita Jeter took the bronze. (Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce took silver.) Also in track and field, Brittney Reese became the second American woman ever to take the top spot in the long jump and Aries Merritt won the 110-meter hurdles. Finally, the US took gold and silver in women’s beach volleyball. This was the third gold medal for Misty-May Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings, a first for the sport.

The Rundown: Foreclosures, Working Hard In the U.S., How Not to Buy a Lemon

August 8th, 2012 - By Tonya Garcia
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Image: Hemera

The Huffington Post takes a closer look at the deflating situation homeowners in foreclosure find themselves in. Back in February, the Obama administration and the nation’s five largest banks reached a $25 billion settlement to resolve “complaints of unlawful foreclosure practices.” Many say things haven’t changed despite the coming October deadline.

-Mitt Romney and President Obama are appealing to women and the working class  during their latest campaign stops. Romney attacked President Obama’s record on welfare.

-Feel like you’re working harder? The Labor Department says worker productivity was up 1.6 percent. That’s a modest figure, but if this keeps up, companies might have to hire. This is a bit of good news following the poor outlook of Monday’s jobs report.

-In Olympics news, Aly Raisman walked away with two more medals, a bronze on the balance beam and a gold medal on the floor exercise, making her the first American to win that individual competition. Gabby Douglas competed on the balance beam, but didn’t medal. Ever gracious, she said, “If it wasn’t my time to shine, it wasn’t my time to shine… I wanted to finish off on a good note. Event finals is something a little extra.” Love her.

Australia’s Sally Pearson beat out her American competitors to take the gold medal in the 100-meter hurdles. Dawn Harper and Kellie Wells, both from the U.S., took silver and bronze respectively. Lolo Jones didn’t medal again, prompting these very sad comments. And now this. Ugh. Allyson Felix competes in the 200-meter race today.

USA Today offers tips to avoid purchasing a used car that’s been in a wreck.

-Resources for small businesses, and particularly black-owned businesses, are hard to come by. But TIME‘s Gary Belsky makes the argument that it’s a worthy investment.

More on Madame Noire Business!