Merryweather Says Anorexia Treatment Helped Her Learn To Enjoy Everyday Life Again
Olympian speed skier Alice Merryweather shared in early December that she has been struggling with an eating disorder and she had opted to sit the 2020-21 season out to recover. In a recent piece that hit both digital and print editions of Women's Health, Merryweather shared that her treatment helped her to learn to enjoy everyday life again.
In the piece, as told to Women's Health's Amy Wilkinson, Merrweather shared,
I’ve been skiing since I was 4 years old and racing since I was 8. Throughout high school, I never felt insecure—I was confident in my body and proud of being strong. Once I achieved my goal of making the World Cup team, though, there was no huge next step to take, and I turned my focus and perfectionism inward. I became more conscious of what I looked like and what I was consuming.
The turning point was when the World Cup season was cut short in the spring of 2020. I’d fallen short of my goals, and on top of that, I was taking a heavier class load than usual at Dartmouth College, and my housing where I was going to be training fell through. It was a perfect storm of stress. I found a reprieve—and thought I was gaining control—through my diet. I stopped eating enough, but I would justify it with excuses like “I didn’t work out that hard today.”
My boyfriend, Sam, was the first person to mention the words eating disorder to me. He noticed I couldn’t manage my emotions. I also complained about being cold, even on hot summer days, which is a symptom. I brushed it aside. I was making the right athletic choice, I reasoned.
Merryweather recently returned to snow with her team for a successful spring prep period camp at Official Training Site Mammoth Mountain in California and has been working hard in the gym at the USANA Center of Excellence in Park City, Utah. She plans to return to competition for the 2021-22 season, with hopes to compete at the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing, China.