DiscoverSasha Sessions: A Team USA Podcast
Sasha Sessions: A Team USA Podcast
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Sasha Sessions: A Team USA Podcast

Author: U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee

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Exceptional individuals share the stories that shaped them, how they define identity, and the motivations, habits, and opportunities that led to personal reinvention. Guests feature athletes from all sports and backgrounds, whose accomplishments inspire millions on the Olympic & Paralympic stage, and people outside of sports, whose work has challenged how we think about the world today.
31 Episodes
Meet six Team USA athletes headed to Tokyo for the Olympics and Paralympics this summer. For the final episode of season one, Sasha revisits some of her favorite conversations with six Tokyo-bound athletes: Yul Moldauer (gymnastics), Matt Scott (wheelchair basketball), Haylie McCleney (softball), Alex Massialas (fencing), Heimana Reynolds (skateboarding) and Tyler Merren (goalball). The Olympics begin July 23, and the Paralympics open August 24. Get to know these awesome athletes and join us in cheering them on at the Tokyo Games!
Softball player Haylie McCleney joins Sasha this week. She explains what it means to be able to represent Team USA and be a part of softball's return to the Olympic Games this summer. Haylie and Sasha talk about how Haylie stays focused on her goals when faced with adversity. Haylie shares her passion for growing opportunities in women's sports both as a coach and an athlete.
Gymnast Yul Moldauer joins Sasha this week ahead of competing at 2021 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Gymnastics. Yul walks Sasha through his career - from accidentally discovering gymnastics as a child to becoming the most decorated NCAA gymnast in history. Yul shares how he found his 'why' during the pandemic and how this reinvigorated his training as he looks to qualify for his first Olympic Games this summer.
Episode 27: Tyler Merren

Episode 27: Tyler Merren


Tyler Merren, 4x Paralympian in goalball, joins Sasha this week. He shares how he found his love for the Paralympic-only sport of goalball, leading him to a nearly two decade career with the national team. Tyler also shares how sports became a guiding force as he progressively lost his vision throughout his young life. Sasha and Tyler discuss how Tyler maintains balance as an athlete, dad and business owner while training for his fourth Paralympic Games this summer. He also shares why he chose to retire after the 2016 Games and what eventually brought him back to the sport he loves.
Tianna Bartoletta, Olympic gold medalist in Track & Field, joins Sasha this week. Tianna explains the importance of mental training and how it's allowed her to unlock her full potential as a competitor. She also shares the difficult moments that inspired her to share her truth in her book, Survive & Advance.
Episode 25: Yeonmi Park

Episode 25: Yeonmi Park


Yeonmi Park, a human right activist, joins Sasha on this week's episode. She details her escape from North Korea at age 13. Yeonmi describes what it was like to build a new life in a western culture, eventually settling in the United States, and how she continues to fight for her people.
David Brooks, cultural commentator and best-selling author, joins Sasha this week. He shares insight into his writings on morality and his personal struggle to build a meaningful life beyond his career.
Molly Bloom joins Sasha for this week's conversation. Molly shares her story from competitive skier to running an underground high stakes poker game. Sasha and Molly talk about how being an athlete and suffering career-ending injuries shaped each of the incredible highs and lows in Molly's life. She also explains her decision to share her life story, eventually becoming the popular movie Molly's Game.
Sasha's Olympic teammate Jeremy Bloom joins her for this week's podcast. Jeremy talks about his path to the Olympic Games in skiing while playing collegiate football and eventually being drafted into the NFL. Jeremy explains how he transitioned into the tech space and coped with the loss of his identity as an athlete. He shares what he's learned about himself and embracing failure to lead him to each new phase of his adult life.
Olympic Speedskater Maame Biney joins Sasha this week. Maame talks about her Olympic debut as the first Black women to represent Team USA in short track speedskating. She tells Sasha about learning to care for her mental health after the Olympics in 2018 and through the COVID-19 pandemic. Maame also explains how she began using her platform to push for change after the death of George Floyd, and how she wants to use her voice to be more than an athlete. 
Episode 20: Peter Attia

Episode 20: Peter Attia


Peter Attia joins Sasha this week. Peter is a podcaster and doctor with a practice focused on longevity. Peter walks through the progression of his career and how he found a passion for the science of longevity. Peter reflects on his learnings from working with other athletes retiring from an elite career.
Episode 19: Rolf Potts

Episode 19: Rolf Potts


Rolf Potts joins Sasha for this week's podcast. Rolf is an author and travel expert, who popularized the concept of vagabonding. Rolf explains how to create a lifestyle around travel. Sasha and Rolf discuss the challenges modern western society presents for travelers and how social media has changed the travel landscape. 
Alex Massialas, silver medalist in fencing, joins Sasha this week. They talk about Alex's rich family history in fencing and how his family has changed the career trajectory of today's fencers. Alex explains the mental side of fencing and how he gets in the zone to compete. Sasha asks Alex about using his platform to fight to restore 11 sports varsity programs cut from his alma mater Stanford and speak out against Asian American hate.
Episode 17: Tim Urban

Episode 17: Tim Urban


Tim Urban joins Sasha on this week's podcast. The two talk about how Tim got the idea for his popular blog 'Wait But Why,' how he's grown and sustained his curiosity about the world over the years and more.
Episode 16: J'den Cox

Episode 16: J'den Cox


J'den Cox, Olympic bronze medalist in wrestling, joins Sasha this week. They talk about his prep for Olympic Trials later this week and his mentality headed into a big match as a world champion. J'den explains how self-acceptance has allowed him to reach his full potential as an athlete. He shares his struggles with depression and hearing loss, which have broadened his sense of community and allowed him to find his identity outside of sport.
Olympic Swimmer Elizabeth Beisel joins Sasha this week. Elizabeth walks Sasha through the highs and lows of her decorated career, spanning three Olympic Games. She explains how she learned to value her mental health as an athlete. Elizabeth also shares how she learned to love swimming again after a particularly disappointing Olympic Games performance.
Brian Koppelman joins Sasha for this week’s episode. Brian is the co-creator and show running of the hit TV show Billions and co-writer of other well-known movies like Oceans 13 and Rounders. Sasha and Brian talk about how he defines success and how that’s changed over the many phases of his career in entertainment.
Paralympic Snowboarder Brittani Coury joins Sasha this week. Brittani shares how she finds her identity in her love of snowboarding and passion for nursing. Sasha asks her about taking time away from training to be a nurse on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Brittani explains her journey to the Paralympics and her mission to uplift the next generation of athletes.
Meet Paralympic Gold Medalist Brad Snyder on this week’s Sasha Sessions: A Team USA Podcast. Brad shares his journey to the Paralympics after being blinded by an IED in combat. Sasha and Brad talk about how navigating the different phases in his life – his military career, his life after injury, his Paralympic career, switching to paratriathlon – has helped him prepare for retirement from sport and his next phase in life. Note: This episode was recorded prior to Brad’s wedding.
Episode 11: Susan Cain

Episode 11: Susan Cain


Susan Cain, author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, joins Sasha this week. Susan describes her transition from working as a cooperate lawyer to following her dream as an author. She explains how she navigates the world as an introvert in a society that values extroverted characteristics, especially in professional setting. The two chat about finding your purpose and learning to define success outside of societal norms.
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