Michelle Carter: Shot put athlete, motivational speaker and make up artist

Away from the glitz and glamour of the Olympic Games, dozens of athletes subsidise their sports career by having other jobs. From farming to banking, Tokyo 2020 looks at several hopefuls aiming to make an impact next summer and what roles they have outside of competition. This week, we feature American athlete Michelle Carter's other passions

Picture by 2012 Getty Images

The deets

  • Name: Michelle Carter
  • Age: 35
  • Country: USA
  • Sport: Athletics (shot put)

Her athlete life

Michelle Carter has appeared in three consecutive Olympic Games since Beijing 2008. At Rio 2016, she won a gold medal in shot put - the first woman from the United States to do so. She also holds the American record in the event.

Carter is coached by her father, who is also a former Olympian and shot putter having won a silver medal for Team USA at Los Angeles 1984.

Apart from following in her father’s footsteps in the Olympics, Carter is an advocate for body positivity. She considers herself to be a ‘plus-size' athlete and has spearheaded sports confidence camps such as the ‘You Throw Girl Sports Confidence Camp’ to encourage young girls to love their body no matter what size.

In an interview with The Root, Carter said: “I do believe that my body was created for a reason. God made everybody different for something.”

“Your body is made to do something special as only for you to do and you have to love yourself no matter at what stage your body is at.”

Michelle Carter 
Picture by 2016 Getty Images

Her professional life

Aside from speaking engagements on positive body image and female empowerment, her love for beauty and fashion led her to her another passion: make up. Fans can sometimes see Carter donning cherry red lips, fashionable jewelry and well-groomed eyebrows even during competition.

For Carter, make up is all about personal expression and building self-confidence. Now the certified professional make-up artist has her own line of make up and even provides live make up tutorials every Monday.

"I am on this path building my business and brand. I believe my brand is about encouraging others to be their best by sharing my experiences as an Olympic Gold Medalist, my love for beauty as professional makeup artist, and my passion for encouraging through motivational speaking," she posted on her Instagram.

Whilst focussing on her personal brand, Carter hasn't forgotten her Olympic dreams. She has been training in her own at-home gym getting ready for Tokyo 2020.

She is eyeing nothing less than defending her title by adding another gold medal to her growing collection.

“My goal is still the same: it’s to make the team and to win,” Carter told Radio.com last year. “It’s just now I have more time to prepare. So I kind of look at using this time to rewind and go back and start working on some small things."


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