FORT LAUDERDALE – When Ryan and Kayla Lochte were leaning back on leather chairs while receiving an intravenous infusion at the Gainesville’s premier IV Hydration Wellness Lounge, they didn't think this would cause the Olympic athlete to get suspended.
After the 12-time Olympic medalist shared a picture of the moment on Instagram, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency launched an investigation and determined that he violated a policy that prohibits IV infusions that are not related to a hospitalization.
Lochte, who completed another U.S. Olympic Committee and USA Swimming suspension last year, faces a 14-month suspension from competitions. During a news conference in Fort Lauderdale, Lochte said the infusion was a vitamin B complex.
"I wasn’t taking anything illegal. Everything was legal," Lochte said. "You can get it at CVS, Walgreens, but there are rules, and you have to obey them."
During the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Lochte and other U.S. Olympic swimmers were accused of vandalizing a gas station. The swimmers claimed they were robbed at gunpoint. He was suspended for 10 months. Speedo and Ralph Lauren dropped their sponsorships.
Lochte will be able to return to Olympic swimming in Tokyo in 2020.
"It's a hard sanction because I wasn’t taking anything illegal, but a rule is a rule," Lochte said. "I wasn't too clear on the rules, but now I am ... Don’t worry. I’m not giving up. I’m going to keep going."