Mechelle Lewis Freeman is a US Olympian, coach and motivational speaker, who since retiring has founded a non-profit organisation, TrackGirlz.
She has also recently started running an Airbnb Online Experience, with all proceeds going to her non-profit.
Mechelle has been connecting with participants from all over the world in the same session – and you can too, with our support.
Mind and body masterclass
My Mind and Body Masterclass is all about conquering mind and body goals. I approach that firstly by offering a track and field–inspired workout, and then by finishing the class with a mindset discussion. During that discussion, I will take participants through my Olympic journey, and share a few inspirational tips and methods I used when taking on big goals so that I can help them understand how to approach their goals in the same way.
What’s really good about this Online Experience is that I’m able to be myself. I’m offering it from the comfort of my own home, and I’m telling participants real stories with real results. It’s all about being your authentic self, and I think that’s really resonated with the users.
I’m also super excited because 100% of the proceeds go to my non-profit organisation TrackGirlz, which provides girls with access to sisterhood, empowerment, and track and field. So this is helping me raise funds for our workshops, our curriculum, and for the grants we provide.
THROUGHT THE YEARS, THE IOC HAS PROVIDED OPPORTUNITIES TO DEVELOP MY CAREER BOTH ON AND OFF THE TRACK, AND THE AIRBNB EXPERIENCE IS NOW ANOTHER WAY TO CONTINUE TO TELL MY STORY.
MECHELLE LEWIS FREEMAN
Setting up an Online Experience
I got involved with Airbnb Experiences because I saw it as an opportunity to really share my platform on a global scale. Throughout the years, the IOC has provided opportunities to develop my career both on and off the track, and the Airbnb Experience is now another way to continue to tell my story.
Initially, I was scheduled to do an in-person Experience, but with the global pandemic, we had to do a little adjustment and make it virtual. It was a bit of a challenge trying to figure out what the set–up was going to be, but I’ve been a PA in the past, so I tapped into those production skills. I grabbed a lamp and a music player, set my clock up so I can have my timing system together, and just created an experience that worked.
Now, I really am excited that I’m able to connect with people from all over the world. Wherever you are, no matter the time zone, we’re able to come together collectively, share interests, share stories and inspire one another.
Helpful for your career transition
Since retiring from athletics, I thought that I would go back into marketing and advertising, but I actually took a step away from agency life and combined my marketing skills with my interest in sport – and that’s where TrackGirlz was born. I’m very active in the sport still; one, as a coach, and two, in getting girls access to sport so they can have the same opportunity I did through track and field.
For athletes who are transitioning from sport into their next career, I really advise you to prepare while you are actively competing. Use your resources. You have the IOC and Athlete365, they have programmes, they have contacts, so connect with them. You can also see what resources national governing bodies have, and what programmes they have that can really help you understand the opportunities that are out there for you once you retire.
It’s also really easy for you to get involved with Airbnb Online Experiences. Not only are you able to share your platform, your strengths and your passions with the world, but you’re also able to make money. And the participants have direct access with a world-class athlete. How fun is that?