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Susan Dunklee | Beijing 2022 Olympic Profile

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The Team USA biathlete talks about the rigors of biathlon training and transitioning away from the sport once her career concludes.

Video Transcript

[MUSIC PLAYING]

SUSAN DUNKLEE: My name is Susan Dunklee. I'm a biathlete from Northern Vermont, and I've been competing in biathlon since 2008. It's a great sport. It's really exciting.

It combines two completely different disciplines, cross-country skiing and rifle shooting. And to be able to go from one mode to the other mid-race is extremely difficult. And that's really the essence of the sport, trying to figure out how to master that.

I'm at the tail end of my career. I've been to two Olympics already. And then this spring, I was like, man, it's really tough to keep training when your body just doesn't quite recover as well as it used to.

And I had this idea to poll and talk to the different athletes that I compete with and ask them about their experience, and how they have adapted their training as they've gotten older. And just interacting with them and hearing their answers gave me a little bit of motivation to keep pushing another year. And it also reminded me how much the community, the biathlon community, is just so much fun.

And I wasn't quite ready to give that up yet. So I'm doing another year, and I'm going to see what I can do. It's really tough when you've been doing something 100% for so many years, and it's been so structured and so focused, to figure out how you're going to replace that in your life when you move forward. So that's been a big part of my story this past year or two, is try to set myself up for what's coming next.