On Friday the 15th January, I’ll be flying out to Belo in Brazil with the rest of the GB Paracanoe Squad for a 2 week training camp that will be a vital part of our preparation for the Paralympics in September.
After all the ups and downs of the last 12 months I am incredibly proud to be part of the team going out there, and this is a huge stepping stone in fulfilling my childhood dream of representing my country at the Olympics.
I still have to pinch myself everyday to make sure I realise that this is actually happening!
It’s been hard work since we came back after Christmas, going straight into 2 days of performance testing. I delivered solid performances, although I didn’t smash it quite like I’d hoped. Still, improvements are continually happening and I’m feeling strong and ready to take on everything the training camp has to offer.
We’ll be staying in Belo for two weeks training at the same venue as the holding camp for the actual Paralympics. This will give us the opportunity to get familiar with the training environment, enabling us to deliver peak performances come September. Vital research will also be done into our sleep patterns, the effect of training at altitude, as well as all areas of training, hydration and nutrition. From this research, leanings will be drawn and any necessary actions taken in order to maximize our performances at the Games. It’s exciting to be part of such a process.
We’ll then go up to Rio itself for two days to familiarise ourselves with the actual Olympic venue. This is an amazing opportunity to go into the Games the best prepared we can possibly be.
Thanks must go to UK Sport and Lottery Funding, without whom this trip would not be possible. Hand in hand with the World Class support and coaching we receive through British Canoeing, we really do enter into the Olympic year as genuine contenders at the Games. I am proud and incredibly grateful to be part of this amazing team.
I intend to put my heart and sole into every aspect of training in Brazil, maximise every opportunity I can, and come back fitter, stronger and with some vital experience under my belt.
Final selection all comes down to 2 races on the 5th June. Anne Dickens is the competitor I have to beat if I’m going to be the boat that goes to Rio….and what a competitor she is! Anne has medalled at the World Championships for the last 4 years, and I have massive respect for her as a paddler…..so I’ve not got an easy job on my hand! However, I love a challenge, I truly believe I can do it, and I will be giving above and beyond over the next 6 months to make sure I give this my very best.
“Whether you think you can, or you think you cant, you’re probably right” Quote from Author Henry Ford
I know what I think……..