The Tokyo Olympics were meant to be a comeback and final chance for Ryan Lochte, but their postponement requires some adjustments near the end of the swimmer’s career.

Lochte, 35, was preparing for his final run at the Games after a tumultuous past few years in which he served a suspension for an alcohol-fueled incident with police during the Rio Olympics, another suspension for receiving an IV fluid and spent time in rehab.

Despite the challenges in recent years, Loche told ESPN this week he’s 100% in for a run to 2021. “I still have a bunch of goals I want to accomplish in the sport.”

The 12-time Olympic medalist returned to competition in mid-2019, and most recently he finished fourth and seventh, respectively, in the 400 individual medley and 200 individual medley at the TYR Pro Swim Series in early March.

“I wouldn’t be back in the water training this hard if I didn’t believe in myself — that I could do it — beating my body up every day,” he told the Des Moines Register before swimming in an event there this month. “It’s going to be a lot harder than it’s ever been in my entire life but I definitely believe I have a shot.”

The decision to postpone the Games because of the coronavirus was a disappointing but understandable one, said Gregg Troy, Lochte’s coach. 

Troy coaches Lochte and Caeleb Dressel – who both swam for him at the University of Florida – as part of a post-collegiate group. Troy said the group has been jumping between pools and training in smaller numbers amid the pandemic. 

“We’re working on some alternative plans looking toward ’21 where we can make the most of the situation,” he said.

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