On this episode, Ryan speaks with the fastest swimmer in Canadian sports history, Brent Hayden. They speak about Brent’s childhood and what inspired him to take the path that he took to becoming an Olympic swimmer, the challenges he faced and what helped him to keep going. Brent discusses how he tries to give back through swimming and through talking about the challenges in his life and provides an insight into an incident which could have stopped his career in its tracks.
In this episode:
- How Brent views himself and how he came to terms with his own success and image in the public eye.
- Getting into swimming, how Brent kept moving forward despite early failures and what inspired him to set him off on the journey he ended up taking.
- How the love for swimming kept Brent going despite not being innately good at the sport and eventually building up to the point where he got to an Olympic standard through perseverance.
- An insight into his first Olympic experience in Athens, how the failure impacted him, his side of the story regarding the misunderstanding with the Police and how he used that experience to push himself to be even better than ever before.
- Learning the power of recognising that you only need one reason to succeed, despite how many things are going against you.
- How his mental health struggle with depression stemming from the early setbacks made training harder for Brent and eventually led to him retiring after a string of victories including the Bronze Medal at London 2012.
- Working through the pain and inconvenience which came with the back spasms he struggled with, how it contributed to him walking away, and how he came around to wanting to make a comeback.
- Using his experience and profile as an Olympian to inspire others, the way he was inspired by the people who he looked up to as a young child, by visiting young people around Canada.
- How Brent and his partner came up with their idea for filming his swim camps, his motivation to teach others how to swim around the world and how that helped remind him of his love for swimming.
- Living with Covid as an athlete, how its limited the traditional opportunities for training and led to Brent discovering a new love for open water swimming.