Travels from Arizona, USA
Amanda Beard's speaking fee falls
within range: $15,000 to $20,000
Olympic gold medalist Amanda Beard has been making waves in and out of the pool since she burst onto the international sporting scene at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games at the age of 14. Her youth and charm captivated the press and her swimming achievements were inspirational in themselves, with silver medals in the 100 meter and 200 meter breaststroke and gold in the medley relay.
From that astonishing start, Amanda went on to a bronze medal in the 200 meter breaststroke at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, an individual NCAA National Championship in 2001, a world championship and world record for the 200 meter breaststroke in 2003 and her first individual Olympic gold medal in the 200 meter breaststroke at Athens in 2004, in addition to a silver in the 200 meter individual medley. She is a three time US national champion in both 200 meter breaststroke and 100 meter breaststroke and also twice in the 200 meter individual medley.
Away from swimming Amanda has had a highly successful modeling career and has recently embarked on a second career as a TV host. Alongside many appearances for her sponsors, she speaks at engagements for Breast Cancer awareness and encourages young swimmers across the nation to set themselves the challenge of reaching the heights she has achieved. Making a comeback to swimming during the 2010 National Championships was regarded as hugely inspiring for women and mothers in particular, and she has yet to rule out trying for another appearance at the next Olympics.
Amanda has published a very well received autobiography, In the The Water They Can’t See You Cry, about her painful teenage years, struggles with drug use and fight against bulimia.
She won silver medals in the 100-meter and 200-meter breaststrokes, and gold in the medley relay. Her young-teen manner captured the attention of the media, and she was often photographed clutching her teddy bear, even on the medal stand.
She won a bronze medal in the 200-meter breaststroke at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Amanda attended the University of Arizona where she captured an individual NCAA National Championship in 2001.
In 2003 she became the world champion and world record holder in the 200-meter breaststroke. At the Athens Olympic Games in 2004, Amanda won her first individual gold medal in the 200-meter breaststroke and a silver medal in the 200-meter individual medley.
She is the winner of eight United States National titles – three times in both the 200m breaststroke and the 100m breaststroke, plus twice in the 200m individual medley – and she was ranked first in a world for 200m breaststrokers in 2003.
Amanda gained popularity with her swimming expertise, but she is also well known for her other endeavors. Modeling has become a full-time career that she would like to continue and is also interested in more TV hosting opportunities. Amanda spends much of her time doing appearances for her Olympic Sponsors, speaking engagements for Breast Cancer awareness and talking with young swimmers throughout the United States about overcoming obstacles and setting high goals. Her comeback during the 2010 Nationals inspired women and mothers everywhere. She is currently training to compete in the 2012 London Olympics.
Amanda discusses her autobiography, In The Water They Can't See You Cry, Amanda describes the pain which her body issues caused her: “[cutting] was my way of healing myself, dealing with my issues… there was the part where I ended up cutting myself too deep and there was lots of blood… It was a great moment because it really woke me up and said okay, look at what you're doing, because… is this where you want to be?"
Seizing on the positive aspects of her ordeals, she says what happened caused her to ask, " Is there something better out there, can you be a healthier happier person? It took a lot, obviously, to get to that moment, and a lot after that moment, but it really, like, rattled my cage.
Sharing her body image issues in a way that is both brutally honest and inspiring, she says, “I ended up feeling like I was the most awful, ugliest human being on the planet, it was one of those situations where you look at someone like Robin Williams and you think man, this guy has it all, everyone loves him, and he wasn't feeling that, that's where the whole depression thing comes in, it's very difficult to understand and it's hard to reach out, because people think your life is so great."
Women’s issues of strengthening and empowerment are very close to Amanda’s heart, as is raising the awareness of breast cancer. She is happy to talk about her experience as a gold-medal winning Olympian and share her winning secrets, both for elite athletes and for the ordinary person who wants to get fit. Her career as a model allows her to give stimulating talks about fashion and style as well.
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In the Water They Can′t See You Cry: A Memoir
In this candid and ultimately uplifting memoir, Olympic medalist Amanda Beard reveals the truth about coming of age in the spotlight, the demons she battled along the way, and the newfound happiness that has proved to be her greatest victory.
At the tender age of fourteen, Amanda Beard walked onto the pool deck at the Atlanta Olympics carrying her teddy bear, Harold, and left with two silvers and a gold medal. She competed in three more Olympic games, winning a total of seven medals, and enjoyed a lucrative modeling career on the side. At one point, she was the most downloaded female athlete on the Internet.
Yet despite her astonishing career and sex-symbol status, Amanda felt unworthy of all her success. Unaware that she was suffering from clinical depression, she hid the pain beneath a megawatt smile. With no other outlet for her feelings besides the pool, Amanda expressed her emotions through self-destructive behavior. In her late teens and twenties, she became bulimic, abused drugs and alcohol, and started cutting herself.
Her low self-esteem led to toxic relationships with high-profile men in the sports world. No one, not even her own parents and friends, knew about the turmoil she was going through. Only when she met her future husband, who discovered her cutting herself, did Amanda realize she needed help.
Through her renewed faith in herself; the love of her family; and finally the birth of her baby boy, Blaise, Amanda has transformed her life. In these pages, she speaks frankly about her struggles with depression, the pressures to be thin, and the unhealthy relationships she confused for love. In the Water They Can’t See You Cry is a raw, compelling story of a woman who gained the strength to live as bravely out of the water as she did in it.
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