Home Australia Cricket champion Lanning opens up about ‘unhealthy’ relationship with food and exercise before retiring

Cricket champion Lanning opens up about ‘unhealthy’ relationship with food and exercise before retiring

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Cricket champion Lanning opens up about 'unhealthy' relationship with food and exercise before retiring

Legendary Australian cricket captain Meg Lanning battled “an unhealthy relationship” with exercise and food before her shock retirement.

Lanning, who describes herself as a private person, finally decided to share why she ended her international career last November at the age of 31.

The Victorian took an extended break from cricket in 2022, returning to lead Australia to a Twenty20 World Cup title in February 2023, but suddenly withdrew from last year’s Ashes for undisclosed medical reasons.

Lanning revealed that he was dealing with an identity crisis outside of cricket that not even his teammates and closest friends were aware of.

He often only ate two “non-significant” meals a day despite running up to 90 kilometers a week.

Lanning did not label her relatively insignificant food intake as an eating disorder, but admitted that she was in denial that she needed help.

“It was kind of a spiral,” Lanning told The Howie Games podcast.

“I wasn’t in a position to be able to go on tour and play cricket and give the levels of commitment needed for that Ashes series, mentally and physically.

“I went from 64 kg to about 57 kg. The proportions were very out of control.

“Everything was out of control and I kept sliding. At some point, it has to stop.

“I felt very out of control in terms of what my future would be like: ‘If it’s not cricket, what will life be like if I don’t play?'”

At his lowest point, Lanning only slept “a couple of hours” each night.

“I dreaded the night because I knew I would go to bed and not be able to sleep,” she said.

“That would make me so angry. I would just get angrier at myself. If you can’t sleep, you can’t do anything.”

Privately dealing with health problems, Lanning was still able to perform on the field, but could no longer commit to captaining Australia and touring regularly.

“No matter what I was going through, I was always able to perform,” he said.

“(But) it had become kind of on autopilot.”

The superstar batsman has continued to play in the Women’s Big Bash League, the National Cricket League and India’s lucrative Women’s Premier League, but has decided not to represent Australia again.

She led the nation to a record five T20 World Cup crowns after becoming Australia’s youngest captain in 2014, at the age of 21.

Lanning, a three-time Belinda Clark Medal winner, scored 8,352 runs in 241 international matches after making her T20 debut in 2010.

Lanning said he still has to answer “questions that are on my mind” but hopes his story helps others.

“I’ve learned that no matter who you are, something always happens,” he said.

“I guess I’ve realized how much it can help to tell people and let them know, even if they don’t have an answer.”


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