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Josh Dixon reflects on a year of being out, aims for World Championships

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The gay former Stanford gymnast competes later this week at Pro Gymnastics Challenge in Pennsylvania

It's been a year this week since elite gymnast Josh Dixon first came out publicly on Ousports.com. Dixon told me that since coming out he's felt more at ease just being himself.

"People are more open about asking me if I'm dating anyone. They're just less awkward around me talking about that. And there's definitely been friendships built because I came out. People are happy that I'm happy and carefree and more myself. They feel like they're seeing the true Josh Dixon."

At the time of his coming out, Dixon was aiming for a spot on the U.S. Olympic team. While he was named to the National team, he finished 13th at the Olympic trials.

He decided after the 2012 Olympics to continue competing and aim for 2016. This Friday and Saturday, May 10 & 11, he will compete in the Professional Gymnastics Challenge at Lehigh University, along with Olympians like King of the Hardwood champion Jake Dalton and Jonathan Horton.

His next goal is to make it onto the U.S. team for the World Championships, held this year in Antwerp, Belgium, in October.

"It's any gymnast's goal to be on as many world teams as possible because it's a stepping stone to being selected to the Olympic team," Dixon said. "I think my chances are pretty good."