The U.S. Olympic swimmer, Ryan Lochte, landed himself a 14-month suspension after he decided to post a picture on social media of him receiving an IV infusion.
This isn’t the first time Ryan Lochte has gotten himself in trouble. In 2016, during the Rio Olympics, Lochte had been suspended for ten months due to his poor behavior. Olympic watchers may recall, there was an incident at a gas station in which Lochte was allegedly involved. Ryan claimed that there was an armed robbery, but it later came to light that his statement didn’t appear to be true. Surveillance video of the incident emerged and contradicted Lochte, resulting in his 10-month suspension.
The Anti-Doping Agency began an investigation after discovering the photo of Lochte receiving an IV infusion on May 24. Sporting News reported that Lochte received the IV infusion without any therapeutic use exemption.
Lochte posted the photo to Instagram and captioned it, “Athletic recovery with some IV drip. #vitamins.” The USADA’s investigation quickly discovered he did receive the IV infusion but it was not the correct amount of fluid. The USDA does not permit athletes to receive any Intervaneous infusions that are more than 100ml in a 12- hour period unless the athlete can supply a special medical exemption. According to Sporting News, “Lochte received an intravenous infusion of permitted substances at an infusion clinic in a volume greater than 100mL in a 12-hour period without a Therapeutic Use Exemption.” Basically, the amount that Lochte received was not approved due to the fact that Lochte did not have special medical permission to be receiving more than the permitted dosage.
Ryan Lochte claims he was not aware of this rule by the USDA and said, “If I did, I never would have done it, it’s obvious that I would not have posted a picture.” He claims he went it for the IV to avoid getting the illness his other family members were dealing with.
“I know it sounds like a harsh penalty for something unintentional and where I didn’t put anything prohibited in my body, but a rule’s a rule and I accept that there was a technical violation and that I’ll have to do this consequences,” Lochte said.
His 14-month suspension began on the day he received the IV, May 24, 2018. The six-time gold medalist will not be returning until his suspension is over in July of 2019. Lochte told reporters on Monday that his goal is still to compete at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.