Allyson Felix is the most decorated American track and field athlete of all time. She’s also a mother. Those two identities came into conflict in 2018 when negotiating a contract renewal with her shoe sponsor, Nike.
Ultimately, Allyson broke ties with Nike because the new contract presented a significant pay cut and lacked adequate maternal protections. After struggling to find a new shoe sponsor, Allyson and her brother/agent, Wes, decided to take matters into their own hands and start their own shoe company, Saysh.
This week on How I Built This Lab, Allyson and Wes talk with Guy about their journey to the top of the track and field world, the decision to leave Nike, and how they built the iconic shoe that Allyson wore during her gold medal performance at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. Plus, why most name brand shoes aren’t designed for women’s feet, and how Saysh is working to change that.
This episode was produced by Chris Maccini, with music by Ramtin Arablouei.
Edited by John Isabella, with research help from Lauren Landau Einhorn.
Our audio engineer was Alex Drewenskus.
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