* This post is written by one of our volunteer ambassadors in partnership with Invictus Active. *
A Day In The Life Of An Elite Athlete During Lockdown
Over the next couple of months, I’ll be giving you an insight into my journey towards selection for the Tokyo 2021 Paralympics. A process that is going to be different in many ways, whilst also providing me with a sense of familiarity during this unusual time. So I’m excited to use my role as an AYL Ambassador to showcase some of the highs and lows. But I wanted to kickstart this blog series by sharing what a typical Monday looks like for me in terms of training and daily life, as many people don’t realise how much goes on behind the scenes.
I have been fortunate enough to have continuous access to training facilities such as basketball courts and gyms, especially during the second UK lockdown when sports facilities were closed. Although I would like to clarify that everything I am doing is in accordance with the current government guidelines surrounding elite sport.
Monday mornings are normally the busiest part of my week. Starting with my alarm going off at 7:20am, which I usually like to snooze for 5 to 10 mins before getting out of bed (let’s face it, who doesn’t?). Next, I have some breakfast (strawberries, yoghurt, and granola are my go-to) which not only prepares me for the day ahead but is my favourite meal of the day. Then, it’s off to the training venue!
The first session begins at 8:45am in the gym and includes one of my favourite exercises - lifting weights. Whilst it’s horrible when you’re doing the exercises, it makes me feel really good afterwards. At the moment, there is a time limit in which I have to complete my lifts, meaning I have 1 hour and 30 minutes to do 2 main push, 2 main pull and a core exercise.
The next session, which is by far my favourite, is an on-court session where I get to practise my skills and socialise with teammates. Currently, Team GB are not allowed to do any contact work, meaning there are no games or scrimmages, but a lot of shooting, conditioning, and chair skills! We have to wipe our wheels, ball, and hands every 20 minutes to reduce the risk of spreading the virus; along with wearing a face mask throughout training. It’s certainly not nice to wear whilst exercising, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
I’m normally knackered by the end of the two sessions, so my afternoon is pretty chilled. I tend to spend an hour replying to emails and completing odd jobs that I avoided over the weekend. Before taking some time to rest by watching a series or playing on my Switch, both of which are very therapeutic for me.
I have been trialling the Invictus Active Trainer for just over five months now. So in the evening, I enjoy taking part in a live workout zoom session with Ella Beaumont at 6pm. Allowing me to keep fit from the comfort of my home, whilst connecting with other wheelchair users. It’s such a great idea that enables active trainer users to work towards a common goal.
After this, I make something for dinner (spaghetti and meatballs are one of my favourites) and settle down to watch an episode of Supernatural with my flatmate! Then, it’s time for bed! I typically turn my lights out around 9:30/10pm, because sleep is an important part of ensuring my body has recovered in time for the next training session.
Hopefully, this blog has provided you with a brief insight into my life as an athlete. Please feel free to message me via the links below if you have any questions!
Either way, I hope everyone is staying safe and being kind to themselves during these difficult times.
** To get your own Invictus Active Trainer, simply click HERE! **