Ryan Lochte is trying to make the best of his 10-month suspension from swimming, even if he doesn't think it was particularly fair.
Lochte is still in the midst of his suspension from swimming, as dictated by the United States Olympic Committee and USA Swimming. He is competing on ABC's Dancing With the Stars, where he has made it all the way to the Top 8, with five celebrities having been eliminated already.
Even if Lochte is excelling on the dance competition show, though, his first passion is swimming. The Olympian suggested in a new interview with Us Weekly that the suspension will make him a better swimmer in the long run.
"The suspension forces me to take a mental break," Lochte explained. "I guarantee I'll be a better swimmer. I will have drive and purpose."
At the same time, he wasn't a big fan of the way the suspension and endorsement-pulling went down - at the height of Lochte's gas station vandalism media controversy.
"I don't think my suspension was fair," Lochte said. "Getting endorsements [for Speedo, Ralph Lauren, Airweave and Gentle Hair Removal, worth millions] pulled, I don't think was right."
Regardless, Lochte is hoping to have changed public opinion for the better through his stint on Dancing With the Stars.
"I don't want people to just remember me for this incident - I will change that," he said.
Beyond Dancing With the Stars, Lochte is indeed exploring other opportunities. He just booked his first acting role, starring alongside Sharon Stone, Fame Janssen and Ellen Burstyn in the upcoming movie A Little Something for Your Birthday.
Meanwhile, you can catch Lochte and his pro dancing partner Cheryl Burke on Dancing With the Stars Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.