Why Michael Phelps’s First Rio Gold Medal Was Incredible

The 2016 Olympic Games in Rio are in full swing, and the most decorated athlete in Olympic history, Michael Phelps, is already breaking records. Swimming in the men’s 4×100-meter freestyle relay alongside Nathan Adrian, Ryan Held and Caeleb Dressel Sunday night, the 31-year-old helped earn gold for Team USA with mind-blowing form. Here, three reasons the swimmer’s first gold in Rio was incredible.

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Michael Phelps For The Win


It Was A Record Breaker

Coming out of retirement after the 2012 London Olympics, Michael broke his own record of the most Olympic gold medals, earning number 19 when Team USA came in first for the 4x100-meter freestyle relay. As a refresher, he also holds the record for the most Olympic golds for individual events (11) and Olympic medals in individual events for a male athlete (13). We're sure he'll continue to break his own record when he competes in the men's 200-meter butterfly tonight.


We Met Boomer Phelps

Michael may have shattered his own Olympic records, but his son Boomer Phelps stole the show. Donning "MP" garb and patriotic headphones while swaddled against mom Nicole Johnson, the 3-month-old certainly did his part to cheer on his dad during Team USA's exhilarating relay.


We Learned A Little Secret

Wondering what's up with those circular bruises on several athletes in Rio thus far, fantastic Phelps included? A little healing technique called cupping. The ancient Chinese practice supposedly reduces soreness and helps overworked muscles see a speedier recovery by using heat or an air pump to create suction, pulling the skin slightly up and away from the underlying muscles. Fascinating, right? More on the process here.