Olympic Hero Erin Hamlin Steps Out of Her Comfort Zone

 
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In 1999, at the age of 12, Erin Hamlin got the chance to hop on a luge sled and try a sport that few Americans ever attempt. It was an opportunity that changed her life. Hamlin went on to represent the United States at four straight Olympics, beginning in 2006, and the bronze she earned at the 2014 Sochi Games made her the first American to win a medal in a singles luge competition.

Encouraging the Next Generation

When she takes to the streets on November 4 for the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon, Hamlin will proudly wear a Women’s Sports Foundation jersey. The national organization, headquartered in New York, works to ensure access to sports for girls and women—a cause that’s naturally very close to this Olympic heroine’s heart.

“I am thrilled to go out there and run for those women and girls who were never able to participate, and to encourage others to keep the trends of girls’ participation in sports going the right way,” Hamlin said. “I can attribute the bulk of my maturation as a person, professionalism in corporate settings, and skills as a public speaker to my time spent as an athlete.”

Out of Her Comfort Zone

Hamlin admits that distance running is not in her comfort zone. But the 31-year-old native of Remsen, NY, has a history of beating the odds. In 2009, she finished first at the FIL World Luge Championships, ending Germany’s 99-year winning streak, before claiming that bronze in Sochi.

She officially retired from luge following the 2018 PyeongChang Games, where she also served as flag bearer. In July, she tweeted that her runs look a lot different in the lead-up to the TCS New York City Marathon.