Three-time Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman is stepping away from the sport at 25 years-old. She made the announcement in an Instagram post on Wednesday in a long letter to fans, along with a heartfelt captioned thanking everyone along the way.
In the letter she posted, Raisman wrote in part, "The past 10 years have been such a whirlwind that I haven't really processed all that has happened, and sometimes I wonder whether I ever will. I've live a pretty fast-paced life and sometimes I have to remind myself to slow down, unplug from technology and take the time to appreciate what I've experienced and learned."
In the caption she said, "It takes a village to get to the Olympics, and I am so appreciative of every single person that helped me along the way. A huge thank you to my fans - your support has meant everything to me. I am very lucky to have been able to do something I love for so many years & I’m excited for what’s next!" she wrote in part in the actual letter.
"One of the best things about being a kid is the belief that anything is possible, and that no dream is too big," she went on to say while talking about watching the 1996 Atlanta Games as a little girl. "I suspect I keep going back to that time because I now know the power of that little girl's dream."
"Going to miss those gymnastic routines in Tokyo this summer. But u got to do what u have to do. Fan for life," one fan commented.
"Wow. This is inspirational. You are strong, brave and resilient. You have been through a lot," another gushed.
"So proud of all you’ve accomplished Aly! On and off the “field!” Thank you for inspiring future generations with your tenacity, dedication, and love of the sport of gymnastics! Can’t wait to see what you do next!" a third replied.
"So well written, beautifully said. You're amazing, and your passion and hard work will get the best of you in no matter what you do. Thank you for loving the sport and for making us love the sport even when at first we didn't know a single thing about it," one follower wrote.