It was good to have a bit of energy back this week and to be able to get stuck into the training sessions again. There’s been some good days when I’ve felt really strong, and some not so good days when I’ve got really frustrated….but I guess it’ll always be a bit like that, and dealing with the frustrations is part of the challenge. The weather hasn’t help, and I got another very cold dunking on Friday when I got caught by a strong gust of wind.
The cold doesn’t help my ankle either and I’ve been in a fair bit of pain this week. This hasn’t helped things in the boat as I end up feeling pretty uneven. We’re looking into changing some adaptation’s in the boat to try and help things, and we’ve also changed my technique a bit to try and get the power from my hips rather than my feet. Once I grasp it this should hopefully make quite a big difference, but it’s always a challenge getting used to changes.
It’s been a significant week this week, as I got confirmation on Thursday that I’m being put on the British Canoeing Podium Potential Programme. This is really exciting news and means I’ll now get some funding through UK Sport. I’m incredibly grateful to UK Sport for their support and this will have a huge impact on my training. It’s great to move into 2015 with this in place.
I’ve also been asked this week to get involved with the Sporting Champions programme through “Get Inspired”, which similar to the Energize project, it will involve going into schools and working with young people to try and encourage and inspire them to participate in sport. As I’ve said before, this is something I’m incredibly passionate about, having experienced first hand, both through my work and through my own personal journey, the huge part sport can play on an individual’s confidence and development, so I’m really looking forward to getting involved with the programme.
At this time of year, I’d really like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has supported me and helped make everything that’s happened so far possible. To Marton pool for allowing me to train on their lake when I’m home in Shropshire, to The Holme Perriepont Leisure Trust for their support of my accommodation, to The Shropshire Community Leisure Trust for providing me access to the Shrewsbury Sports Village and their facilities, to Marc Woods for his invaluable advice and support and to the coaches at GB Canoeing and all the other athletes for providing me with the most amazing opportunity and giving me just the best time of my life!
Last week was another special week for Climbing Out too. Kevin Gledhill is a gentleman I met earlier in the year, he is an incredible man, who has sadly been diagnosed with terminal cancer. He has set up a trust fund to support a Climbing Out programme a year for the foreseeable future. These programmes will be his legacy.
I was lucky enough to attend Kevin’s 60th Birthday last weekend, where Kevin asked everyone to donate to Climbing Out instead of buying him presents. The generosity of everyone was overwhelming, and the total raised so far stands at just under £5,000! The huge support shown is testament to just what a special man Kevin is.
So all that’s left to say is a huge Happy Christmas to everyone. Mine won’t be filled with too much eating and drinking (we’ve got performance testing on the 5thJanuary so there’s no time for slacking!) but hopefully there’ll still be lots of merriment. Here’s to an awesome 2015!!