Ex-Olympian: Why I Became a Vegas Call Girl
Suzy Favor Hamilton opens up in new memoir, 'Fast Girl'
By Brownie Marie,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 12, 2015 8:42 AM CDT
In this Feb. 27, 1999, file photo, Suzy Hamilton wins the women's 1,500 meters with a time of 4:13.96 at the USA Championships athletics meet in Atlanta.   (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
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(Newser) – Suzy Favor Hamilton's "runner's high" became replaced with a much more destructive rush in late 2011, when the three-time Olympian began working as a high-priced Vegas escort. Her memoir Fast Girl is out Monday, and its upcoming release has the former track champion talking to People about what led her down that path: a then-undiagnosed bipolar disorder. "My bipolar was driven toward sex," the 47-year-old explains. "It could have been driven towards drugs and alcohol, or gambling." Her first experience with an escort was on the occasion of her 20th anniversary; she suggested that she and her husband, Mark, spice things up by traveling from Wisconsin to Vegas and having a threesome. In an excerpt of her memoir published in Sports Illustrated, Favor Hamilton recounts their night with Pearl.

She writes, "Pearl had flipped a switch inside me, awakening a certainty that I could please clients even more than she’d pleased me." She says that over a six-month period she convinced Mark to let her become an escort named "Kelly," telling him, "It would be just one or two times with their top clients." In Fast Girl, she recounts leaving "one of the fanciest hotel suites in Las Vegas" having just made $1,200. "This is way better than winning a race, I thought. This is better than competing in the Olympics." She says that once the rush of pushing sexual boundaries started to fade, she began telling some clients her true identity. In December 2012, the Smoking Gun exposed her double life. A month later, her bipolar disorder was diagnosed. "I still crave that high," she tells People. "I can't say I'll never act out in that way again." But "now I have a new purpose," she writes. "I want to share my story. I want to have the courage to keep fighting." (Amnesty International hopes to decriminalize prostitution.)