Olympian Gabby Douglas is speaking out about an issue close to her heart.
The gymnast announced in a new post on Instagram that she would be taking a break from social media in order to prioritize her mental health. "Hey guys gabby here," she began her Aug. 14 post. "I know i don't post a lot on social media, but i just wanted to let you guys know that i will be taking a step back from the socials to work on myself and focus on my mental health."
Gabby continued, "My life has never been smooth or easy. i have carried a heavy weight on my back for quite some time and it has weighed me down, physically, mentally, and emotionally." The athlete went on to share that she "no longer want to run" but instead "fight and heal."
"I refuse to be defeated by this weight, i refuse to be hardened by this weight," Gabby—whose message coincides with fellow star Tom Holland's decision to step away from social media—added. "I want to feel light and happy again."
"I want to be the best representation for all of you and be the best version of myself," Gabby wrote, before she concluded by expressing her gratitude for her fans and supporters.
"I love you all so much and i am forever grateful for every single one of you," she said. "Your love and support does not go unnoticed. don't forget to take some time off for yourself."
Gabby became the first US-American artistic gymnast to win gold in both the individual all-around and team competitions at the same 2012 London Olympics. She is also the first African American to become the Olympic individual all-around champion.
She retired her life as an Olympic athlete in 2016, where she was a member of the US gold-winning team in the Rio Olympics. Her team was dubbed the "Final Five" by fans which included Aly Raisman and Simone Biles.