If I had to guess what makes the Ryan Lochte swimming machine run, I would probably say a six-pack of high-sugar Monster energy drinks, an order of mozzarella sticks from a bar, a bottle of tanning oil, and a whole chlorine puck. All the essential nutrients and energy a brah needs to whip around the pool. And according to USA Today, Ryan does an IV infusion too and that’s a major no-no with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. Ryan has been suspended from swimming because of it. The worst part is, Ryan stupidly left all the evidence out in the open on social media.
Back in May, Ryan posted a photo of himself receiving an IV infusion. Ryan claimed the IV contained mostly B-complex vitamins that could be purchased at any pharmacy, and that he was taking them because he didn’t want to get sick like his wife and baby son Caiden Zane.
The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency has a rule that if an athlete receives a prohibited substance intravenously or through injection, with a volume over 100 mL within a 12-hour period, it requires a “therapeutic use exemption.” One exception would be if Ryan received the IV during a situation that involved hospitalization or a surgical procedure. But it wasn’t, and Ryan didn’t get an approved therapeutic use exemption first. Without the exemption, the USADA consider it to be illegal. So the USADA dropped a punishment on Ryan to the tune of a 14-month suspension. Just for reference, Ryan was suspended for 10 months for “over-exaggerating” that gas station robbery during the 2016 Rio Olympics. The USADA clearly takes needles just a bit more seriously than pulling a Pinocchio.
Ryan still swims competitively, and was scheduled to compete at the 2018 National Championships in California this week. Ryan released a statement about his suspension, and he seems ok with it.
“A rule is a rule and I accept that there is a technical violation. I am hopeful that other athletes learn from my mistake.”
It’s not known if Ryan’s 14-month suspension will impact his ability to qualify for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. But I doubt his suspension will have him sad for very long. Ryan doesn’t just swim like a goldfish, he also has the memory of one. I’m sure he’ll wake up tomorrow, remember he can’t compete in an official capacity, and shrug his shoulders before betting his pool cleaner $20 that he can’t race him to the diving board.