We had the opportunity to catch up with Olympic Heptathlete Chantae McMillan on her experience with being part of the ESPN Body Issue. See below for what gives her confidence and keeps her motivated to chase the dream.
AthleteBiz: You’ve been thrust into a whirlwind of media and public attention. Did you feel prepared for it? Has it been an empowering experience?
I was not sure of what was really going to evolve from this experience. It’s all been amazing thus far. I always hope experiences like this will allow people to look into finding out more about USATF and support us all. In the end, if I can inspire and motivate someone along the way with my actions, then I believe I’m going the right direction.
AthleteBiz: Obviously your visibility helps bring attention to our sport and to the heptathlon. How have your experiences in the sport helped form who you are as a person and as a confident, fit young woman?
Developing as a heptathlete is part of the reason I was confident to do this photoshoot. Training, getting better physically on a daily, gives me self-confidence. My experiences being able to compete in front of thousands and do interviews throughout have helped me develop and find out who I am and what direction I want to continue to go and who to grow into.
AthleteBiz: Any reactions from friends, family or fellow athletes that have been particularly surprising or important to you?
I am thankful for the amount of support I have received from people who have helped me become who I am, such as past teachers and mentors. It’s gratifying that they are happy with my decision and believe in my journey.