Sunday, 26 July 2009

I am currently training hard in the pool and building myself up at my local gym as i am competing next week in Sheffield at the National Youth Championships. I will be racing from Tuesday till Sunday at my favourite swimming facilities and hope to produce some more great swims and personal best times.

I will be racing once a day plus any finals that I progress through to in the evenings. I am really looking forward to racing on another big stage and hopefully I can prove myself.

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Last weekend I competed in Newport for the World Championship Qualifiers. I had been training well the last two months and felt extremely fast in the water, so I was really looking forward to swimming to the best of my ability. The competition took place over Saturday and Sunday and I planned the weekend so that I swam my best three events and added in the 100m Breastroke. I knew that everything was right leading up to the competition. I felt good in the water, had trained well in the gym twice a week and planned my races for the weekend perfectly. I had to get ready mentally and keep hydrated so that I could be the best I could be.

I swam my first race on the Saturday morning. This was the 400m Freestyle and was looking to kick the weekend off to a flyer. I was in the fastest heat and was fortunate enough to race the 2008 Paralympic Champion. In the race, I focused on trying to stay with him as long as possible. I swam a good race and went 4 seconds faster than my Personal Best. My weekend had started just how I wanted it and felt like I was on fire, physically and mentally.

In the afternoon, I swam the 50m Freestyle and was hungry for more good racing. I felt good going into the race but finished 0.3 seconds outside of my Personal Best. I was not too disappointed from this, as technically, I swam a faultless race.

I could not wait to dive back in Sunday. I had the 100m Breastroke in the morning and desperatly wanted to do the job so that I could feel as confident as possible for my 100m Freestyle in the afternoon. I swam another strong race and chopped 0.5 seconds off my Personal Best. I was pleased and now had a few hours to prepare myself for the biggest race of my career to date. I had been trying to break the minute mark for this event since November and have failed to do so on numerous occasions. This repeatedly gave me a mental block and I still had an air of doubt going into the race even though I got myself really fired up. I was in a heat of the biggest names and had all my tactics sorted in my mind. This was my last chance to shine as I had all of the next week off from training as I was away on a Geography trip with the school. I also knew that this would be the best time and the only time for a few months to beat the clock before it ticked past 1 minute. I swam an excellent race, never gave less than 100% and hit the wall fiercly with passion. I looked up to see a time of 58.96 and punched the air with delight and relief. After a long wait of 8 months, a massive weight had lifted from my shoulders but I could not put my race into words. I knew this was a long time waiting for it but this made the race all the worthwhile. I had destroyed the minute mark and was told that I had swam a great competition by the GB Head Coach.

I had put a lot of effort and spent a long time working for this, but now I am looking forward to challenge the very best in the world.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

1st July 2009

Just to give you a quick update, I'm off to Cardiff this Friday to compete at the Great Britain World Shortcourse Championship Trials. This is where swimmers try to acheive qualifying times for the World Championships which is being held in Rio de Janeiro. I know I have a slim chance of qualifying, but I am looking forward to competing against top athletes and am determined to produce personal best times.
I have had a top few weeks of training and also was a VIP for the 'Get Safe For Summer' campaign, which involved me to help encourage young children to increase their confidence and knowledge for the water. It was a really good day and I hope the children enjoyed the day as much as I did.