after goals, so I always had something to focus on, to keep me motivated. I tell all of the kids: don’t get discouraged. It always gets better.
EBONY: What’s your relationship like with Lia Neal, the African-American swimmer who made her Olympic debut in London? Has she reached out to you at all for support, or vice versa?
CJ: She’s like my little sister. We definitely keep in touch, both being from New York. I was born in the Bronx; she’s from Brooklyn. Whenever I’m up here, I train with her team and train with her. There is a silent head nod; we know. But at the same time, we respect our position. Honestly, I am so excited to see her do as well as she’s doing. In 2016, I’m going to be hanging up my goggles and passing the torch to her. And there’s not a better ambassador than her. She’s going to hold that and run for another eight years.