Sorry for not blogging for a while. Following my last blog I was banned from making any public statements leading up to the Games (WHOOPS!!). So I planned to do a recap once I returned, but I have put off writing this for far too long:
1. Because I have been RIDICULOUSLY busy since returning from Rio
2. Because I just really didn’t want to write it!
But I feel I need to recap on one of the toughest things I have been through and also to let people who have followed my progress know what went on.
So I was selected as the reserve athlete for the Rio Summer Olympics. Yes that sucked, but after a few weeks of crying and shouting and sulking, I accepted that I wasn’t going to go and compete, but I was at least getting a free holiday to Rio!
This was then made worse after my last blog which
pissed off upset the selection panel. They decided that I needed to prove my commitment to my reserve position and do a fitness test two weeks prior to flying out. This consisted of swimming a 200m race- on my own, in our training pool and hitting a time that I had only achieved once previously all season (in a race situation I might add!)- followed by a full combined (again on my own!).
Save to say this didn’t improve my mood. Not only were they saying that I wasn’t good enough to compete at the games, they were now saying I wasn’t even good enough to be a reserve. GRRRRRRR. More crying and ranting followed this!
After some negotiating I managed to get a pacer in the swim and combined. A huge thank you to Luke who made the day possible!! 👍 With his help I managed to swim a seasons best and combine 30seconds under their set combined time (Not bad considering I was diving into the water with tears in my eyes and I had only shot once in two months!!). To top it off the 4 coaches stood just behind my shooting position with stopwatches at the ready (these coaches hadn’t spoken one physical word to me since before the selection was announced) so all I could hear through my shooting series was the beeping from all their stop watches!! In response to finishing the test the performance director said…..
“so that’s that finished. Well done, here is a support staff t-shirt, oh it might be too big, we only have a medium”
Well that got shoved straight back in his face!! Grrrrrrrr!
Sorry I promised I wouldn’t rant. I am pleased I did the test and I got to finish things on my termswith my head held high but it was absolutely horrid at the same time.
So I was allowed on the plane to Rio!! We flew business class out there which was lush!! I obviously took full advantage of the lounge and the free champagne on board!!
Then we were taken to our accomodation which was where all the support team and some reserve athletes from other sports were staying. It was pretty SWEEEEET!
I then embraced 6 days of watching sport, eating out, and partying in true Olympic fashion!! There is such an amazing atmosphere at an olympics that makes people so friendly and open! I absolutely loved it.
I also got to catch up with some other pentathletes that were out watching as well which was lovely!
When the time came to watch the pent I was surprised that I didn’t feel the need to be competing. I was quite happy not to be in sweaty fencing kit!!
The comp itself was very exciting, especially with the two hot favourites getting eliminated in the ride (my heart goes out to both of them as they had little brats for horses and couldn’t have done anything more to get them round, pentathlon can be a very unfair sport), opening up the rest of the competition. This lead to a great combined race at the end.
The hardest part for me surprisingly was sitting with Kate French’s family and friends watching how proud they were of her. This caught me unawares and I found myself starting to cry! It sounds pathetic but all I wanted, more than anything was for that to be my family and friends sitting in the crowd. This hit me again at the end when she was finishing, they were all crying (happy tears obviously) because she kicked ass and came 6th, and I was welling up again!! I loved watching them all but it still stung. Watching the boys was obviously a little easier (apart from the fact I was a little hungover!) and I could fully enjoy the competition.
As soon as the comp was over it was like a weight had been lifted. That was it. There was no more. It is sad that something I had aimed for for so long had finished but at the same time it meant I could now move on, move forward. I felt positive and happy again. The negative atmosphere that had surrounded me prior and at the games had really been hanging over me like a dark cloud and it was finally gone. I had a big triathlon when I got home which had kept me going training wise throughout this tough time and had given me something positive to aim for, so I was just excited to get home and crack on with something I could be proud of. This will all be in the next post and will be farrrrrrrrr happier, I promise!!
Sorry again for the long blog, I hope some of you have kept with me and the pictures made it all a little more bearable!! Lots of love as always xx