Review: ‘In Deep With Ryan Lochte’ Gives Unfiltered Lens Into New & Improved Man

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“In Deep with Ryan Lochte” - Photo Courtesy: Trailer still, Peacock, the streaming service from NBCUniversal

A new documentary In Deep With Ryan Lochte, which premiered today on the new streaming service Peacock TV, follows the life of the “new and improved” Olympic gold medalist and world record holder, as he trains for a spot on next year’s Olympic Team.

Lochte, 35, was the subject of international controversy after the 2016 Rio Games”: in the midst of a drunken night out with younger team-mates, he fabricated a story that he was robbed at gunpoint at a gas station in Rio. After publicly lying, Lochte was suspended from competing for 10 months and lost all of his sponsorships. Then in 2018, the bumps in the road continued when he was suspended by USADA just before the U.S. Nationals for receiving intravenous fluids without a therapeutic use exemption.

The documentary is an outstanding lens into the new man that Ryan Lochte has become in the last four years. Once painted as a “fun loving party boy coasting on natural ability,” he had established a reputation for himself that became difficult to shake. He had the jewelry, the flashy cars, the closet full of shoes. He had a reality show, modeling opportunities, and was one of the richest swimmers in the world.

Now a father of two, Lochte is hardly recognizable compared to the image and persona that had previously been a part of who he was. His thought on that:

“The 25-year-old Ryan Lochte would not believe the 35-year-old Ryan Lochte as I am today. He would be like, ‘I do not want that lifestyle.”

“Honestly I am happier now than I’ve ever been in my entire life.”

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Ryan Lochte. Photo Courtesy: Connor Trimble

Now living a modest life with his wife Kayla and two kids, Liv and Caiden, without the glitz and glamour he embraced ten years ago, Lochte has juggled fatherhood with his training to potentially make what would be his fifth Olympic Games next summer in Tokyo. This would make him the third American swimmer to achieve such a feat after Dara Torres and Lochte’s arch-rival on medley, Michael Phelps.

Ryan Lochte is back in Gainesville, Florida under long-time coach Gregg Troy, who guided Lochte to spots on the 2004, 2008 & 2012 teams before he made the switch to David Marsh and Swim MAC Carolina, and who had an excellent moment in the film when he threatened to kick the camera crew out of practice.

“I don’t want to deal with a 35-year-old college kid,” Troy said unapologetically in the documentary about having Lochte back in Gainesville, bringing back memories of a similar conversation between Bob Bowman and Phelps before the latter made the decision to come back and train for a spot in Rio. Says Troy:

“There’s been a few bumps in the road, but in the last six months he has been really on top of things. It’s been really good.”

Lochte admitted to NBC broadcaster Rowdy Gaines – the 1984 Olympic 100m freestyle champion who was recently made USA Swimming’s Director of Community Engagement – at a club meet in Orlando in the film that he had been doing more yardage now than he was doing in college, but had been “training better than ever before.” In the documentary he is seen sharing a lane with world record holder and the current “face” of USA Swimming Caeleb Dressel, and he voiced how training with the “hungry” 23-year-old has been beneficial for him to chase his goals.

Ryan Lochte had notably won the 2019 national title in the 200 IM with a time just outside the top 10 in the world. But even Lochte admits that he was about 30 pounds heavier last summer than he is now.

Some of his workout regimen is shown, where he is seen carrying logs with his personal trainer and back squatting in the gym while his son Caiden cheers him on. An emotional moment is shown when Ryan and his wife Kayla tearfully talk about how Caiden being born was the best thing that had happened to them after the fallout that happened after Rio.

Lochte feels that he is under more pressure than ever before as he trains for the 2021 Olympic Trials, as he tries to redeem himself after what happened in 2016.

The documentary shows Lochte as a new man, someone who has learned from his mistakes, and is ready to redeem himself in the pool. It shows tremendous growth and strength in someone that had to overcome two embarrassing mistakes, and how he ultimately found love along the way. It may sound like the plot to a movie, but it’s a feel good story about redemption, growth, and love, and if you weren’t a Ryan Lochte fan before, then this film might change your opinion on him.

In Deep With Ryan Lochte can be viewed for free on the new Peacock TV app here. An email address and password is required for access.

Trailer:

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