After two Olympics, and basically supporting the Russian gymnastics team on her back, Aliya Mustafina is going to be a mother.
That's right. Aliya married bobsledder Alexei Zaistev a couple months ago and now, her father, Farhat Mustafin, confirmed her pregnancy to EG.ru, and said she's due in July.
Aliya met her husband, Alexei in 2015 while being treated for injuries at the same hospital while Aliya was receiving knee surgery and he was being treated for an injured hip abductor. The story goes,Aliya was depressed, thinking that she wouldn't be able to compete in Rio. Alexei provided a welcome distraction for her and he showered her with gifts of flowers and sweets and stories. EG.ru reports that Aliya invited him to spend New Year's with her. They've been in love ever since.
Alexei's distraction proved a great asset for Aliya. She did rehab her injuries in enough time to compete in Rio. She came home with three medals from the Games, a team silver, bronze in the all-around and a second uneven bars gold medal.
Of course, now the joke around the Gymternet is how soon after giving birth will Valentina Rodionenko announce Aliya's comeback for her. (Want to start a bet?) We do know that it is more than possible to have a baby and come back to gymnastics. Chusovitina, for example and Tasha Smith, who competed for Oregon State, came back in 2009 to her team after having a daughter.
In all seriousness, congratulations to Aliya and Alexei! May their baby be happy and healthy and may Aliya's pregnancy go smoothly!