Amanda Beard: The Highs and Lows of a U.S. Olympic Swimming Star

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Amanda Beard: The Highs and Lows of a U.S. Olympic Swimming Star
Nick Laham/Getty Images

On the surface, she had it all. Her life was a conflation of every American child's dreams––both male and female. On the one hand, she was a famous athlete with an Olympic Gold Medal. And on the other, she was an international sex symbol who dated dreamy celebrities and posed in magazines.

But there was a dark side to Amanda Beard's triumphs. A side so dark, she worked actively to hide it from the world that seemed to adore her so much.

Now, as she gears up for a questionable attempt to qualify for her fifth Olympic games, Amanda Beard hopes to put the past behind her, and focus on the pool––a place she has often referred to as her 'sanctuary.'

Here are the four biggest highs and the three biggest lows in the career of a true American icon.

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