A 12-time Olympic medalist is about to become a first-time mom.
Natalie Coughlin, who is tied with Jenny Thompson and Dara Torres for the title of most decorated Olympic women’s swimmer, announced her pregnancy on social media Wednesday. At the same time that Coughlin announced the fall 2018 release of a new wine for Gaderian Wines, which she co-founded on Instagram, she also dropped an obvious clue of her pregnancy.
“We’re not officially releasing it until the Fall, which is perfect because I can’t drink for the next few months,” Coughlin said in a post accompanied by an emoji of a pregnant woman.
The post quickly received thousands of likes.
The baby will be the first for Coughlin and her husband, Ethan Hall, a former swimmer with the University of North Carolina and UC-Santa Barbara. He is now a coach.
Coughlin, a three-time Olympian, made her Olympic debut at the Olympic Games Athens 2004. She won five medals in Athens, including a gold medal in the women’s 100-meter backstroke, a title she successfully defended in the Olympic Games Beijing 2008 to become the first woman to win back-to-back golds in the event.
She won six medals in Beijing, becoming the first American woman in any sport to win six Olympic medals at one Olympic Games. Coughlin then won a 12th career Olympic medal four years later in London, winning a bronze medal in the 4x100-meter freestyle.
The 35-year-old, who has not competed since 2016 though never officially retired, also earned 15 long-course and eight short-course world championship medals in her career.
Paul D. Bowker has been writing about Olympic sports since 1996, when he was an assistant bureau chief in Atlanta. He is sports editor of the Cape Cod Times and a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.