"Before everybody was traveling with puppies, now everybody is traveling with babies."
Olga Govortsova, the Inside Tennis podcast guest this week, produces the quote of 2018, which has been the year of the supermom.
The former world No. 35 is working her way back on the WTA Tour after giving birth to her son in February. She sat down with Nina Pantic and Irina Falconi in New York City just ahead of the US Open to talk about the road back, the challenges of motherhood on tour and her career goals, both on and off the court.
Here are the timestamps:
—Olga explains her pregnancy story, and how she didn't even plan on coming back to the tour. She was ranked No. 141 when she played her last pre-baby match at Wimbledon in 2017. She's ranked No. 766 this week, and entered the US Open qualifying draw with a protected ranking.
—How different is life now that she's a full-time WTA touring mother? Hint: Free time doesn't exist.
—How does protected ranking and maternity leave work for players? The rule recently changed from eight tournaments to 12.
—Sweet home Alabama. The Belarusian is based in the United States, where she's grown up and where she had her son, Dominic.
Family ❤️ pic.twitter.com/CFvHokjRfp— Olga Govortsova (@OGovortsova) July 6, 2018
—Was Olga inspired by any of the other new moms on tour? There's a lot this year, including Serena Williams, Victoria Azarenka, Mandy Minella and Andreea Mitu—to name a few. The 29-year-old Belarusian is also motivated by how so many players are doing well deep into their 30s.
—Olga was ranked No. 35 in 2008. Her goals include achieving higher heights, and she's feeling more motivated now than before.
—The Belarusian Fed Cup team reached the final last year. Olga has been a huge part of her nation's Fed Cup rise.
—Olga looks fitter than ever. How did she stay in great shape during her pregnancy and after it? She returned to the ITF Pro Circuit just two months after giving birth.
—Breastfeeding is one of the biggest challenges to new mom's trying to come back to their playing shape. Serena had to publicly decide when to stop and focus on her own body. Olga adds her take to the discussion.
—What are Olga's best memories on tour? She is a four-time WTA finalist and eight-time WTA doubles champion.
—Olga and Irina are in New York for the US Open. Olga says the Slam is her favorite, and she's got a very particular reason.
—As a new mother coming back, did Olga change anything with her fitness or her training?
—Olga started a clothing brand two years ago, called OG. It's sports casual gear, including match clothing, and it's a project she'll likely amp up after her playing career.
—Olga shares some of the more light-hearted things she's learned with motherhood like noticing the best strollers and bottles.