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Melissa Gonzalez, wife of Lions QB David Blough, "relieved" and "excited" to earn spot on Colombian Olympic team

Detroit Lions quarterback David Blough and his wife, professional track athlete Melissa Gonzalez Creamer, will be half the world apart later this month in order to compete in their respective sports.

But they could not be more united in the pride and emotions they feel as Melissa steps onto the sports world's grandest stage.

Melissa has qualified to represent Colombia in the 400-meter hurdles at the Tokyo Olympics. Melissa was notified last week that she had qualified based on her world ranking of 35th in her event.

It was not a surprise that Melissa met the standard, based on the research David had done in charting other runners and their times, but it removed any doubt that she would make the Colombian team.

"The first emotion I felt was relief," Melissa said in a Zoom interview from the couple's home in McKinney, Texas.

"I'm not stressed about it anymore. Now that I know for sure, I'm just very excited."

Melissa is an American-born U.S. citizen who holds dual citizenship with Colombia, where her father, Hector, was born.

Typical for a quarterback, David had figured out all the options and knew Melissa had met the ranking standard. He had time to research it as he prepared for his third season with the Lions as a backup quarterback.

Quarterbacks report for training camp on July 23. The first full-squad practice is July 28. Melissa's first heat is projected to be run July 31.

"I was sweating it," David said. "The kind of guy I am, I did all that math. I had all the ranking calculations figured out. I was consumed with seeing all the times all over the world.

"She did everything she needed to do in this position. It's a relief, and exciting.

"Maybe when she hits the ground in Tokyo, it will finally sink in."

Running in the Olympics is a giant leap from when Melissa first ran 100-meter sprints as a fifth-grader in Texas. It was apparent immediately that Melissa was faster than the other runners -- boys and girls.

Melissa moved up the ranks, ultimately winning two state championships while at Creekview High School.

From there she ran track at the University of Texas but was not satisfied with her collegiate career when she graduated in June of 2016.

"I was kind of just happy to be there," she said. "I didn't have a great college career.

"I felt I had a little more left. I didn't want to stop running, and 10 years down the road wonder, 'What if I kept running?'

"I was going to commit to running through the next Olympic cycle."

That would be 2020 in Tokyo -- extended to 2021 because of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic.

View some of the best photos from Lions offseason workouts, OTAs and rookie minicamp.

David and Melissa seldom work out together, and the few times they have been general. They do not compete against each other.

No, they have not been timed to see who can run the faster 40-yard dash. It's a good bet that Melissa would win.

Melissa turned pro after college and has been training the last five years under Sammy Babbs, a respected track coach.

Melissa doesn't want to get distracted from achieving her goal of running her best in the Olympics, but she's thought about what the experience will be like.

That entails everything from the opening ceremony to the competition to the joy being part of such a fulfilling experience.

"I imagine I'll be pretty nervous until I start warming up," Melissa said. "That's usually how I feel the morning of...the anticipation of it until I start warming up. Then I feel OK...this feels normal. I know how to do this.'

"It's pretty cool to have the uniform, the bib number with the Olympic Games on it, the credential to walk around the Olympic Village and see all the other athletes.

"It's really cool."

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