You may have seen me tweeting about EnergyBits recently, I thought I would take this opportunity to explain a little further.
I am a brand ambassador for Bits of Health, a company who sell algae in tiny “bits” that you can eat when you’re hungry, tired, want to improve your health, drop a few pounds, have more energy for a training session or run, prevent a cold or lower blood pressure.
These Bits of Health come in 4 forms,
ENERGYbits – 100% spirulina algae. These give you energy, both mentally and physically and are also a high protein snack. With 64% protein they are great for athletes, fitness enthusiasts and anyone looking for an energy boost the natural way. These are best taken before or during your exercise or activity.
SKINNYbits – 100% spirulina algae. These help curb your appetite, satisfy your hunger and help you lose weight. They contain 64% protein and Omega 3 and are just 1 calorie per tab. These can be taken anytime of the day.
RECOVERYbits – 100% chlorella algae and help you recover from stress, illness and build our immune system. Best taken in the evening before bed or after alcohol.
VITALITYbits – 50% chlorella algae and 50% spirulina algae, they help build your immune system and give you energy. These can be taken anytime of day.
These Bits of Health are bought in bags of 1000 tabs but also come with a handy tin so you can carry them with you and eat them at your convenience. You can swallow or chew them with water, you can also add them to your food such as yoghurts, smoothies or salads. They are really handy when you are on the move.
So if you want to try this 100% natural, high protein, energy-giving product, look no further. Simply log onto the website (www.bitsofhealth.com) to browse the products. You can get a 15% discount on any online purchase by putting the word “Laurasbits” into the coupon box when you checkout.
So I’m hoping more of you will check out this great product, I’d be interested to know what you all think.
Till next time
After an unforgettable summer – sustaining my 3rd stress fracture in my foot, missing the Olympic Games and turning 30 – I have started a new chapter in my life.
My first big change was of the coaching variety!! Having been in this game a long time now I have my own ideas about the kind of training that works best for me. I spoke to Daniel Plummer who has the same views as me, we are now 9 weeks into winter training and I am happy with how things are going. I have been working really hard, my brain has had the hardest workout, trying to change my technique slightly! I am now counting down to a successful indoor campaign. I had a great 4 years working with Linford Christie and his group but it was time for me to explore other ideas.
I have enjoyed life as a full time athlete but my disastrous summer made me realise (more than ever) that this wasn’t going to last forever. Having completed my MSc I was really keen to get my post-athletics career started. I contacted The Running School in Chiswick about possible vacancies and was delighted to be offered a position as a Running Coach. I had been to the centre in 2006 for some speed sessions and was pleased to hear that the Performance Director – Mike Antoniades – still remembered me. So I started training for my new position in October and am now a fully functioning Running School Coach. I am really enjoying working there, coaching a wide variety of people from children to Para-athletes. Working part time hours is suiting me very well and I am enjoying having something other than my athletics to focus on.
I am also busy planning my wedding, this involves lots of lists and organising – something I love almost as much as athletics!! We are getting married on the 21st December 2013, a Christmas wedding. If anyone has any top tips I would love to hear them!!
This new chapter in my life is suiting me and I am really enjoying it.
Thank you again for your support, it means a lot.
I’m back! It has been a while since my last blog, so after today I am making sure I blog regularly again. I am also going to make sure I write about a range of topics, not just me!!
I first must get this down in writing. It is a thank you to all the people who supported me in my dream to compete at London 2012. I had a great team of people who had sponsored me, helping me train and compete to the best of my ability. It was very difficult to let these people down when I didn’t make the team. I have made sure they knew how much their support meant to me, having a team behind me and following my progress means so much to me. So a massive, massive thank you to
Ann McLaughlin Physiotherapy Clinic
The Ben Trend Foundation
Ruislip Chiropractic Clinic
These guys supported me financially or with services, which made all the difference to my preparation. I was overwhelmed at their offers of support, a fantastic example of human kindness. Thank you again team.
It is these kind of agreements that really help athletes like myself who are not funded. It isn’t easy to train as a full time athlete and work to earn a living at the same time. I was able to get by without having to work last year, as I wanted to give Olympic year all my energy. I am now in the process of looking for a part time job to get my post-athletics career on track (see what I did there?!)
Be sure to come back soon, more blogs to follow!
I promised this blog a while ago and have only just managed to summon the energy to sit and write it.
Since picking up a serious foot injury at the end of April, I have been left following the 2012 athletics season from the outside looking in. At first I was too busy with training, rehab and appointments that I barely had time to think about the Olympic season that was passing me by. I was in a zone, trying desperately to maintain the great shape I had shown in April, remaining positive about my Olympic ambitions. As time went on, I am not ashamed to admit, my spirits started to drop. Sitting in hospital, waiting for a CT scan the morning I should’ve been starting my campaign to qualify for the Games at the Olympic Trials, was probably a turning point in my attitude towards Olympic selection.
I decided to go and watch the Olympic Trials, even though I was unable to compete. I didn’t particularly want to go but thought it selfish if I locked myself away. I’m glad I went, I watched friends and training partners qualify for the Olympics and it really did make me happy.
The CT scan proved to be the turning point in my recovery. It showed the original injury had healed and I was able to push on and get back racing.
I then followed the European Championships, again as an outsider looking in. This was the first major Championships I had missed since 2005. This was an upsetting fact for me, however I can say that it wasn’t for lack of trying! It was hard to see the women’s relay team get DQ’d after such a great run. The girls ran 43.51secs, the best time for a few years. This DQ was to cause greater anguish than just missing out on the final, it relegated the GB team to 17th on the world rankings, we were out of the Olympics. The media frenzy that ensued was something the GB girls have, unfortunately, got used to over the years. No amount of media scrutiny changed the facts, the British Women would not be sending a relay team to the London Olympics, 6 girls’ Olympics dreams crushed. Not one mention of the heart-ache and disappointment felt by the girls who had worked hard to make that relay team, myself included.
If I thought that was disappointing, I had no idea what the next week was about to bring. The Olympic Team was selected on Monday 2nd July and announced Tuesday 3rd July. I was not included in the team. I did appeal, as I was selectable, had many races lined up in July and had every intention of being ready for the Games. This appeal was also unsuccessful. I then took the difficult decision to end my season. Even though I was ready to race, I was going to have to manage the foot all season. This amount of work and potential pain did not, to me, seem worth it if I was not going to be competing at the Olympics.
So once again I am the outsider looking in. I watched the Diamond League from Paris last week and this weekend is the London Grand Prix at Crystal Palace. I am an athletics fan so will watch all events on TV. Watching the London Olympics may be a step too far for me, and unless I get a fantastic job offer to convince me to stay, I will be going on holiday during the Games.
Sitting on the sofa watching my life’s ambition take place without me, is a step too far for this frustrated spectator.
When I was ten years old my primary school teacher suggested that my parents took me to the local athletics track. My dad took me to Bannister Sports Centre in Harrow, 19 years ago, and I haven't looked back since.
Athletics has always been a part of my life since that first visit to Bannister Sports Centre. I had no idea, back then, that it would become my life. When I see people I went to school with they say "I knew you were going to be a sportsperson, you were so fast" but truth be told, I wasn't that fast at school. I am never rude enough to tell them that my apparent speed was more a reflection on their lack of speed, than my talent. I wasn't one of these talented junior athletes who won numerous English Schools titles, I was lucky to even qualify for the English Schools Championships (some years missing out as I hadn't run the qualifying time.) So I find myself at the age of 29 (nearly 30) in a position I never thought possible. I still pinch myself at the job I have fallen into, an international athlete. It was never planned, never looked on the cards, was never a goal or ambition of mine, it is just a product of working hard at something I love.
In the past I have written of the sacrifices made to be the best athlete I can be, there are also perks to the job!
There are also some silly perks to my job.
So, even though I may moan and it may seem like a tough life, being an athlete really is pretty great. I wouldn't change my job for the world. I feel extremely lucky to be in my position and hope it will set me up nicely for more success in the future.
I’ve been thinking about this topic for a while now. Maybe because I am getting older and have started reflecting more on my career, maybe because we have a very big year ahead or maybe because I am exhausted from having to convince people that life as a full time athlete is tough. Whatever the reason, I feel compelled to write about the sacrifices athletes have to make, or should I say CHOOSE to make, to be successful.
When athletes talk about sacrifice, we mean it! We know everyone has to make them during their life, I am hoping this will give you an idea of the kind of sacrifices an athlete chooses to make.
Training is a big part of my life and it takes a lot of hard work, discipline and mental strength to get through. There is the obvious pain we put ourselves through. Having so much lactic running through my body that every ounce of sense is telling me to stop, but something deep down reminds me why I am putting myself through it. Rolling around on the floor in agony not able to move or stay still, feeling like someone dropped a brick on my head, feet burning, mouth drier than the desert and your coach telling you to get up! Blisters are a regular occurrence but you keep running, niggles/soreness you keep running. It doesn’t end there, just when you think the pain is over there is the recovery strategies. By this I, of course, mean ice baths. Sitting in a bath of ice for 10 minutes, feet are numb, legs are stinging, not able to breathe. Massage for an athlete is a different concept than for most people. For us it involves someone digging their elbow through your muscles for an hour, finding knots and sore spots and working on them till you can take no more.
Diet goes hand in hand with the training, it’s just as tough and just as important. I have a meal plan that I stick to religiously. It details every meal I will eat that week. Each meal I eat is tailored to my individual needs and body composition goals. I do not eat any snacks or extra food around this plan and if I am going out I will take my meal with me in a container and eat on the move. This makes going out for dinner difficult. There is usually something on the menu that I can eat but I won’t go to certain restaurants if I know I will not be able to eat the kind of food I need.
A social life is pretty non-existence for athletes. The regular Friday and Saturday nights with friends from the age of 18 (!) through university are now spent eating, resting and getting an early night. I catch up with friends as much as I can and they are very understanding with my commitments to training. Now I am at the age where my circle of friends are getting married so I have already missed numerous hen nights, countless birthday celebrations and am facing the prospect of missing weddings. Of course this is all my choice and I could go out and party if I wanted to but this is not the way I am going to achieve my goals. A late night may affect up to three days of training, and I am not prepared to do that.
Travel is an aspect of an athletes’ life many may say is not a sacrifice at all. I beg to differ. I am away for anything from 3 days to 8 weeks at a time. A 3 day trip involves packing a small bag, flying in to a European airport, being picked up in a car and driven to a hotel in the middle of nowhere, sharing a room with a complete stranger, eating food you are not quite sure of, racing, then flying home the following day. It is not glamorous, it is not a holiday, I do not go sight-seeing. It is purely business. When I go away for a longer period of time there are different obstacles. Of course I miss home, my family, fiancé, friends, my cats, my house, my car. I have to set up life on the other side of the world and make sure I am in a comfortable environment to train at the best of my ability. It is tough, especially when I have something to share with my fiancé or family and they are not around for me to share it with them. The time difference normally means that I only have a few hours a day where I could possibly talk to anyone back home. Training is so hard that I am able to complete my morning session, eat lunch, complete my afternoon session, eat dinner then I am ready for bed. There is no time or energy for anything else.
My whole lifestyle is geared around my athletics career. It is a short career so you have to throw yourself into it for the short period of time you are able to. There are many things I have to think about that I didn’t before I was an international athlete. The big one is my whereabouts for drug testing. It is a system called ADAMS where I provide my overnight accommodation and a one hour testing slot for every day of the year. I must be where I say I am going to be. If, for some reason I am not going to be there, I must inform them. This makes un-planned journeys and trips a little difficult. There are also little things like not wearing heels, not walking anywhere too far, standing around, sitting down, being in the sun too long. I need to eat every three hours so if I make a trip somewhere I make sure I have food with me, there is no “popping out” anymore. Then of course there is the issue of life after track. I achieved an MSc in Sport Sciences but have not yet been able to use it. I have put my long-term career on hold for a career in athletics. All my friends are very successful in their chosen field. I have been successful but it is not a long term career. In a few years I am going to have to find another way to live my life. This is a very daunting prospect for an athlete. All I have known for the last 6 years is athletics.
This lifestyle of course requires some financial backing. I have received no funding for the last 18 months. I am self-funded, relying on personal sponsorship (see my website for details), appearances and prize money to get by. I have no time to work as training consumes all my time. I earn money sporadically and spent it on essentials such as food, bills and petrol to get to training. It is really difficult to make ends meet but I make it work because I want to. I know it is a short term situation and when I retire I will be able to get a job and earn a good living. Until then I will live on a limited budget and make the best of my situation.
I hope this has given you an insight into the sacrifices an athlete makes to be successful. I am not the only athlete out there living like this. Athletes pour their heart and soul into a sport that is arguably the toughest out there. Life is not easy but the good times are worth the pain and sacrifice of the bad times. So next time you think us athletes have an easy life, think again. Next time you criticise an athlete for not performing well, think of what they have been through to even stand on the start line. Next time you see us packing yet another bag, think how hard it is for us to move our lives to the other side of the world in pursuit of our dreams.
“Each of us has a fire in our hearts for something. It’s our goal in life to find it and keep it lit” Mary Lou Retton
Many of you may have noticed that I have already started my indoor campaign with a few races in the UK. Well I am now here in Mondeville, France to start the business end of the season. The journey here took a long time. A flight from Heathrow terminal 5 to Paris, 1 hour wait at Paris airport for a half an hour drive to the train station. A 2 hour train journey and we had arrived!!! We are right on the north coast, literally next door to the ferry port. I left my house at 9.30am yesterday and arrived in the hotel at 7.50pm!! What a long journey time for such a short distance, maybe I’ll swim next time!
My race is not till tonight so I have all day to chill and relax. So far I have watched Social Network. It was a good film. I had no idea all that happened. It was interesting to see how people react when money is involved. I am glad he put his friends name back as co-founder of Facebook. It got me thinking what can I invent to make $25 billion. Then I thought, I don’t need to. My life is so full of blessings that outweigh any kind of monetary value. I think people forget that sometimes, including myself. We get so caught up with money and how much we can make that we forget what we already have.
It’s freezing here, there is snow on the ground and the sun is out so it looks lovely, but looks can be deceiving. I just took a little walk outside to get some fresh air. After writing and posting this blog I will get some lunch and rest a bit more before getting myself together for the track. I will of course let you know how I get on.
Bye for now
I haven’t been shouting about his fact but my indoor season starts today!! I am racing at Alexander Stadium, Birmingham. It is always a strange feeling as it is so early in relation to the outdoor season but you still want to run fast. I have had a successful winter so far, I would say. We have made a few changes to my training this year, from personalising certain sessions, nutritional adjustments, bikram yoga, chiropractic treatment and conditioning sessions. We shall see if they have all helped!
A few of Team Christie are also starting their season today. We have all trained very hard this winter so I hope we have a lot of success. I am confident the whole group will have a good indoor season to set us up nicely for our outdoor season.
I’m off to race, fingers crossed ……..
Well as I sit here (in my front room) at 9.30pm on New Years Eve, I reflect on the year past and, of course, the year coming up!! 2011 was a decent year for me on the whole. My best memory was winning the 100m and 200m double at the England Championships, my worst memory was the injuries that plagued the second half of my season. There were many more great memories along the way like my warm weather training trip to Arizona where I visited the Grand Canyon with Rafael. Spending my birthday in the UK for the first time since 2004, I was able to see my friends and family which meant so much to me. My memories are always athletics orientated, in a few years I will have a more varied list of memories but for now it is all TRACK TRACK TRACK!
2012 is set to be the biggest, toughest, greatest and most memorable year of my life so far. I have my targets and am working harder than ever to achieve them. Keep following my progress via my website and twitter to see the excitement unfold as we get closer to the Olympics.
The Christmas and New Year period is a strange one for athletes. The only thing I am concerned about is when the track is open. I have been lucky this year as Lee Valley has been open every day, other than Christmas Day. I have not been able to relax as much as others may do around this time. No lounging around all day eating left-over turkey and chocolate, instead I have remained in my usual routine. I allowed myself to deviate from my usual eating plan on Christmas Day, other than that it has been business as usual. This can be tough, but not when you have an Olympic Games to qualify for in 7 months. Of course I wouldn’t have it any other way, I am not complaining about the lifestyle I have chosen.
Well, it’s now 10pm and I am off to bed. Hope you all have a great New Years Eve.
I was introduced to Bikram yoga by my training partner, Lucy. I went along to a class with her when I was last in Arizona in April. I really enjoyed it but didn’t go back as we were racing and time did not allow us to. As the 2011 season progressed my lower back was causing me more and more pain. I had heard that Bikram yoga was really good for backs, so I started to do some investigation.
I found a local studio in Chiswick and decided to start practising in my break from training, to see how it was and if I thought it would benefit me when I started winter training. Well, I did not know what I was getting myself into. I can say Bikram has become a vital part of my training, not only does my back feel better but I feel great and honestly think Bikram has had a massive part to play.
The class lasts for 90 minutes and takes place in a room heated to 40°C and 40% humidity. There are 26 poses performed in the same order every class. You can make it as hard or as easy as you feel comfortable with, but it does take a few sessions to get used to the heat. I have heard stories of people passing out and feeling sick but neither of these happened to me. I started off practising 3 times a week to give myself a chance to get used to the class. I started to feel the benefits immediately. Walking out of the studio I felt great, I had more energy and no aches or pains. When I started back into winter training I implemented Bikram into my schedule twice a week. At first I was worried it would detract from my training but it has been quite the opposite. I feel, as an athlete, it is important to relax and switch off and this is exactly what you do in Bikram. It is 90 minutes devoted to you, your body and your thoughts. I feel the benefits physically, mentally and spiritually (never thought I would be saying that!)
ATTENTION ALL ATHLETES. BIKRAM YOGA CAN GREATLY IMPROVE YOUR PERFORMANCE.
For more information check out the studio I go to in Chiswick, a great place to practice.
Go on, give it a go. Let me know what you think about it!
So I have returned to my favourite place to train, Scottsdale Arizona. I love it here so much. It is not my first visit to the USA and on my many trips over here I have noticed a few things that only happen in America!!
· The cockney accent is adored. Everywhere I go, people tell me how much they love my accent. I wish they could tell my mum that when she moans at me for sounding “common”!! It is amazing, just start speaking and the English accent can get you all sorts of freebies.
· Birkam yoga is a different kettle of fish over here. Even though Bikram yoga is the same 26 poses every time, the clientele differ greatly from the UK to the USA. In my first class here in Arizona I was next to a man with tube in his neck which was there for him to breathe though. In my second class I was behind a man with machine gun tattoed on his back. To confirm my first point, my Bikram yoga classes are free of charge for me out here!!
· Random people say hello to you on the street and you don’t think they are strange. It is incredible, people here are so friendly and it puts me in a good mood. I have to really stop myself from saying hello to strangers when back in London, could you imagine the looks I would get!
· It gets to 21 °C and everyone is wearing coats. This temperature indicates winter and people get their winter clothing out. I was out today in a vest top and jeans and I saw someone wearing gloves!! I suppose when it’s 46°C in the summer, 21°C is relatively cold!!
· There is a drive through EVERYTHING! From the ATM to the pharmacy and Starbucks! I wouldn’t want to suggest that my American friends are lazy but ………..
· Watch back to back episodes of the same TV programme. I can watch 4 episodes of The Big Bang Theory back to back on TBS, 2 hours worth of Say Yes to the Dress on TLC, MAGNIFICENT!
· TV adverts that criticise rival brands in order to promote their own! I am sure there is some kind of law against that in the UK! They will just tell you how bad the other brands are, naming the rival brands and why theirs is better, it’s hilarious.
I am sure there are lots more examples but this gives you an idea. It feels like home here, but it is different in so many ways.
Bye for now
I sit here, almost 4 weeks since I returned from the World Championships in Daegu, and I feel I am now ready to reflect on my 2011 season. It has been 4 weeks of eating what I want, getting up when I want and sitting on the sofa for as long as I want. I have found over the years that it takes me some time to be able to sit and think about the season I have just completed. I was disappointed with my performances at the World Championships, I am now ready to talk about this and my season on the whole.
My 2011 campaign started in sunny Arizona with a few local track meets. I left the USA with season bests of 11.52 and 23.91, my quickest ever runs in the USA. I was then straight on to the Manchester Street Race within 5 days of landing back in the UK. A rainy day in Manchester but a fun event, I ran the 150m and finished 3rd in a rather slow time of 17.43. I put this poor performance down to jet lag and moved quickly onto the next race in Loughborough. This is always a busy day for me and this year was no exception. I won the 100m in 11.35 (wind +2.4) quite pleased; 23.69 in the 200m, what a disaster; followed by a win in the relay. After these UK based races I was off on the road again to Regensburg (11.54 -2.9), Strasbourg (11.43), Stockholm (relay), Cottbus (11.37 +2.6), Velenje (23.59) and La Chaux du Fonds (11.30). PHEW! I then needed a few weeks at home before I competed at the England Championships. I feel I ran really well here, winning the 100m in 11.23 and the 200m in 23.47(+2.5). I was pleased with my 100m as this was the qualifying time for the World Championships and the Olympics next year. The 200m was tough as the wind on the bend was so strong, making it impossible to run a fast time. It was great to win the double, at this stage of the season I was the double double champion (100m and 200m England and UK Champ!) The next stop was the UK Championships and World Trials.
With 1 week to go, disaster struck! I have an on-going back problem which flares up every now and again. Unfortunately my back flared up exactly a week before the Trials, I was unable to move for 3 days but my physio did a great job and I was able to do some strides on the Tuesday, a session on Wednesday and then race at the Trials 2 days later. I finished 3rd in 100m which I was disappointed with. As athletes we want to win all the time, realising this is not always possible I was content with the fact that I had probably booked my place on the World Championships team. Who said lightening doesn’t strike twice? The following day I was warming up for the 200m and I pulled my calf. I was so upset. I had managed to go all winter without any problems then had 2 major injuries in the space of 9 days.
I was picked for the World Championships 100m and relay and left for the holding camp in Ulsan, South Korea. My calf injury had just cleared up but unfortunately my back was still causing me a lot of problems. I was in good spirits as I knew I was in good shape. My run at the England Championships had given me a lot of confidence. It was the day of the World Championship 100m heats. Despite refusing an epidural for the past 2 weeks as my back was quite painful, warming up for my heat I was in no pain for the first time!! I was drawn in heat 3 with the first 3 from each heat to qualify with 3 fastest losers from all the heats. The gun went and I got out well, which is not unusual for me. The girl to my left had run 10.96 this season so as she started to move away from me I didn’t panic. I kept relaxed and held my technique well despite being under a lot of pressure. I crossed the line in the 4th place with 11.45. I knew it would not be enough to make it through to the semi-finals. I was disappointed but not upset. I did as much as I could, I did not mess up the race as I have done in the past. I just felt like I couldn’t get out of 4th gear, I had lost speed and sharpness. When I looked back at my training diary I realised I had not run fast since the trials and the calf injury. I had de-trained and lost the speed and sharpness I had at the England Championships. My body let me down when I needed it the most.
A bad performance at the World Championships leaves you open to criticism about your performance and preparation. A strong athlete is able to ignore any comments from people who are not involved in their athletics career. A strong athlete knows the circumstances behind all performances, they know what they are working on and their long term plan and are able to keep their focus entirely on that. There will also be some athletes who may read or hear these comments and are quite upset by them. This is a shame as no one performs badly on purpose and the fact is that the athlete is competing at the Championships as they are the best our country has. It is very easy to pass judgement on others when you do not have the facts. My philosophy is to listen to the people who matter (coach, family, close friends) and ignore the others, especially if they are ignorant, thoughtless and senseless.
So, what now!! First things first I am trying to keep myself afloat financially, with no sponsorship or funding I am making appearances and doing bits of work where I can. If there is a year worth the struggle, this is the one. I am making plans for the next year with my coach, starting with training in Arizona for most of the winter. Any of you who have read my blog before will know how much I loved training in Arizona in March and April this year. I am slowly but surely getting my body back together again, I do feel a bit like Humpty Dumpty at the moment.
I am looking forward to the next 10 months, I start my campaign on Sunday. It is going to fun, emotional, tough, painful and full of sacrifice. I cannot wait.
Till next time
So yesterday I shared my personal worse things about being at a major champs, now I share the best bits.
No washing up or housework! This seems like a very minor thing and I do enjoy cleaning when I am at home, to the point of being OCD. When you are away you have your meals cooked, plates washed, rooms cleaned for you. It does always seem like a bit of a come down when you have to go back to doing these chores yourself!!
Visiting a different country. I have been lucky enough to visit some amazing places over the years. Australia, China, Japan, South Korea, India and much of Europe to name a few. It is usually a chance to see a country I wouldn’t visit myself and although we don’t get to do much sight-seeing you do get a feel for the place.
A front row seat at the greatest athletics competition of the year. I am a big athletics fan so making the team for a major championships is fantastic, I get to be a real geek and follow all the events close up.
At number 2
Racing the best athletes in the world. It is a real privilege for me to be able to compete in a major championships and I really enjoy lining up against the best athletes from around the world.
Taking the number 1 spot …….
The pride of representing your country. I still get exciting when I put on my GB kit. Just 10 years ago I was nowhere near making a junior team let alone a senior team. It is an honour that only a small number of athletes in the UK receive in their career. I for one am always grateful, thankful, excited and proud to hear “Laura Turner from Great Britain” when I stand behind my blocks.
Maybe you could’ve guessed my top 5, there may have been a few surprises. I am off to get ready for the relay now. Great Britain will be in heat 2 lane 4, I will be on 3rd leg. We have been working really hard for this. The girls are ready to run, lets’ hope we can do ourselves proud.
Here are my top 5 things that I wont miss about being at a major championships. Please dont view it as negative, it is meant to be a little bit of fun. Tomorrow you will see the best bits of a major champs!!
Here are my top 5 things that I wont miss about being at a major championships. Please dont view it as negative, it is meant to be a little bit of fun. Tomorrow you will see the best bits of a major champs!!
At number 5……….
Travelling everywhere by bus. The organising committee put on a regular bus service to take you to the stadium or training track or into town. These buses normally run every 20 minutes and take around 10 minutes to reach your destination. If you are lucky enough to battle your way onto these very full buses (which is tougher than you think for a small person like me) you then have to endure the delightful fragrance of sweaty athletes after a sweaty session in a sweaty climate!
Wearing accreditation AT ALL TIMES. Accreditation is a pass that we are given when we enter the village which allows us into restricted areas such as the village, warm up track and stadium. If you were to forget this pass you will not be allowed ANYWHERE. This results in several trips back to the room to pick up the forgotten pass, similar to being tagged but more inconvenient!!
Wearing the same clothes as 80 other people. I will never get bored of wearing Great Britain kit but when the whole team are all wearing it you do feel like a bit of a clone.
In at number 2 ………
Food. Eating cold food that you have not chosen yourself, from a tray. Food can be a bit hit and miss depending on where you are but it is generally not good anywhere! Out here has been particularly bad. It has not been warm, tasty or filling. You have to use a tray for your plate, cup and cutlery then put all your used items into separate containers before you leave. You finish your meal with a false sense of full-ness and end up being starving hungry again an hour later.
And at number 1…………
QUEING!! Queue for food, getting onto the bus, getting into the stadium, getting into the lift, using the toilets, everything!! I don’t mind queuing for something that I am looking forward to but quite frankly none of the reasons I mentioned above are worthy of a long queue.
Check back tomorrow for my top 5 best things about being at a major championships.
I haven’t blogged for so long, I have been busy preparing for the World Championships. It all started with the UK Championships and World Trials. I finished 3rd in the 100m, it was a position that should’ve secured my spot in the World Championships team but I had another week to wait till the team was announced. I watched the London Grand Prix at Crystal Palace from my front room as I wasn’t able to run due a tight calf. The Monday following the grand prix the team was selected and I was delighted to get a phone call confirming I had been selected for the 100m and relay at the World Championships.
So then it was all systems go for Daegu. I got back into some training for the week I had left in the UK. It was also my birthday before I left for the holding camp. I turned 29! It was nice to be in the country for my birthday, a very rare occurrence. I went training in the morning, of course, followed by dinner at my parents’ house, then meeting up with my friends in the evening. A few days later I was all packed and ready to go to Ulsan in South Korea for the holding camp.
We arrived in Ulsan after the longest journey I have ever undertaken!! The hotel is nice, the food was a bit ropey to begin with but has picked up now. The weather was lovely to begin with but has been very rainy for the last few days. It took me about 4 days to get into a good routine with my sleep, jet lag is always worse when you travel east. Training has been good, there are a few others from my training group here and my coach so it has been like training back at home which is great.
There isn’t really much to do here in Ulsan so my room-mate (Nicola Sanders) and I have been keeping ourselves entertained watching Luther (from the beginning). Last night we watched the first episode of the second series, the one with the mask. We both SCREAMED when the guy in the mask appeared behind the policeman waiting in the car. I’m not sure if we were more upset at being so scared or at the fact that our neighbours didn’t knock on the door to make sure we were ok! I wont name them, to save their embarrassment! Our other source of entertainment has been Starbucks. Yes, it really is as exciting as it all sounds!!
The holding camp here in Ulsan is provided by AVIVA (you may have seen me in their recent advert, have I already mentioned that!?) They give us a fantastic environment for us to prepare for the World Championships. There really is no better place for us to be. I start my World Championships campaign on Sunday morning (early hours of the morning in the UK) with round 1, the semi and final are on Monday evening (Monday morning/afternoon UK time). I am hoping to better my performance from 2007 where I finished 7th in my semi final. I am looking forward to testing myself against the best in the world.
This is last you will hear from me till after the Championships are over. Thank you to everyone for their support so far, the fun starts now!
Well, what a busy weekend I had last week! I competed at the England Championships and managed to walk away with the 100m and 200m titles! The 100m was a good run and a seasons best along with a World Championships and Olympic Qualifying time. I was delighted to get this out the way before the trials. The way I ran was also encouraging. The 200m was just plain hard work. There was a tremendous head wind around the bend which took a lot out of me. I did manage to run quicker in the final than the heat which was the encouraging sign for me. I was delighted with my two titles which add to the UK 100m and 200m titles I currently hold, a double double champion!! You can view both of the finals here http://www.englandathletics.org/page.asp?section=1176§ionTitle=England+Athletics+TV
This week also saw the launch of a new advert I am featuring in. It is an AVIVA advert called ‘Paving the way’ which is advertising the Olympics and the support AVIVA have given to the Athletics Team. They have released a ‘behind the scenes’ film which I also feature in. Take a look at the behind the scenes. http://www.youtube.com/user/avivaathletics The advert will have its first showing in the first advert break of the ITV evening news.
Sonow I am gearing up for the UK Championships and World Trials next weekend. I will compete in the 100m and 200m to defend the titles I won last year. It will be on BBC2 Saturday evening, so keep your eyes peeled!!
Well, what a busy time I have had. I am currently sat at home relaxing but this was not the case 10 days ago. I first raced in Germany, Cottbus to be exact (I had never heard of it either!) I ran ok there, came 2nd with a windy 11.37. I flew home then flew out to Slovenia the following day. I was only running the 200m in Slovenia, this was a first for me. Slovenia was a beautiful country and I had such a lovely few days there. The weather was lovely, track lovely, hotel nice and the scenery amazing. There was a dry ski jump outside our hotel!! I came 3rd here in a season’s best of 23.59, not a great time but I ran slightly better than I had been. I flew home from Slovenia and flew to Switzerland 3 days later. I was back at the track where I ran my personal best last year. I came 3rd (again!) with a seasons best of 11.30, 0.01 off the World Championships A standard. I won a very lovely watch which I am wearing right now. After my hectic 10 days I decided to stay home for a while and my next race will be the England Championships this weekend. I am looking forward to it, even though the weather forecast is for rain!
During my time at home I am on the hunt for some personal sponsorship. Since I lost my lottery funding last year I have been struggling to get by and I thought to myself, enough is enough! So I am on the lookout for some sponsorship as I aim to qualify for the London 2012 Olympics. It is very difficult for athletes to be able to live as full time athletes, in my opinion this is only way I will be able to pursue my Olympic quest successfully. I am lucky enough to be supported by PAS, a supplement company owned by Darren Campbell. They provide me with all the supplements I need to support my training, which is a lot! Check out their website www.pasonline.co.uk. I am very grateful for this support as I am without a kit sponsor or lottery funding. Any help I get is gratefully received and beneficial for both parties, from car companies, petrol allowance, travel agents, entrepreneurs and local businesses. If anyone out there knows anyone who can help please get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org
For now I am going to continue enjoying my time at home which so far has involved a mixed netball tournament (spectator only!), my god sons sports day, family bbq and Transformers 3 at the cinema. All of which have been thoroughly enjoyable.
Thank you so much for reading and continuing to support me. I would love to hear what you think of my blogs and website email@example.com
Over and out
DAY 1. Thursday
It’s that time of year again, the European Team Championships. We are in Stockholm this year and I am quite excited as I have never competed here before. We meet at Heathrow Airport Terminal 5 for our flight. We are meant to travel in kit, which I think is great so I have all the kit on I can possible wear (geek alert)! I never get bored of wearing GB kit. The flight is very bumpy which upsets me and my plane buddy Andy Turner, we always sit next to each other on the plane as the seats are allocated in alphabetical order. We have even been given the same room before as it was thought we were married (we aren’t married and we didn’t share the room). After landing in Stockholm we get the coach to the hotel which takes around 45 minutes. The hotel is nice and has a few other teams staying in there too; Russia, Spain, France and Ukraine. There is nothing to do on the first night other than to have dinner, settle into our rooms and go to sleep.
DAY 2. Friday
Up for breakfast and we are off to the training track. We get ready to catch the 10.15am bus and end up waiting for an hour for a bus as the 10.15am bus was full and they didn’t send another! So we finally get to the training track and the relay squad do a warm up together which consists of static drills, strides passing the baton through all of us then strides passing the baton through in pairs. We don’t do anything quick as we are racing tomorrow. Back to the hotel in a car after yet another full bus leaves us behind, by this stage it is raining and quite miserable in Stockholm. Lunch is followed by a relaxing afternoon. We have a team meeting this evening where Charles talks to us about the Championships, athletes competing in their first international get a little gift and the team captain gives his speech. This year the team captain in Dai Greene. Dai’s speech goes down a storm, it’s a perfect blend of humour, inspiration and motivation. Good job Dai. You may have picked up from the TV coverage that we are given a prediction as to how many points we are going to score. Turns out the relay team are down to come 3rd (scoring 10 points).
DAY 3. Saturday – RACE DAY
Today the sun has decided to come out, perfect timing! The relay is not until 5.30pm so I have all day to relax. My room-mate (Nicola sanders ) and I decide to start watching Luther, the TV show, after much bullying from Christian Malcolm and Dwain Chambers. We watched the first 2 episodes of the 1st season and we both love it!! I thought it was going to be scary, I have no idea where that notion came from! So now we will continue to watch the 1st season before we start watching the 2nd season which has just started back on TV. Anyway, time to get ready to race. The sun has been shining down on the Olympic Stadium in Stockholm and it is a great day of athletics. We warm up as a squad and proceed to the call room before the race. This is where all the teams gather before they go out on the track. It can be a little tense in here, especially as they can hold you in there for quite a while. We are in the fastest heat with Ukraine inside us and Germany outside, I am on the 3rd leg. The race turns out to be not as smooth as planned for us. My changeover to Abi on last leg was very tight but was within the changeover box and therefore legal. We ran a time 43.50 which will qualify us for the World Championships this year. Job done. Back at the hotel we have dinner and another team meeting to review today’s action and look ahead to tomorrow.
DAY 4. Sunday
So the hard work has been done. I spend the morning and afternoon relaxing in my room. I watch the coverage on TV and go to the track to watch the relays. This was because I was still on antibiotics and feeling pretty rough. Normally I would go and watch all day. Lots more drama with the relays, the girls coming so close to winning and the boys dropping the baton. Team GB end up in 4th place overall which isn’t a disaster but we would’ve preferred at least 3rd. Time to get back to the hotel to get ready for the Banquet. This is customary at every Championships , the organisers put on a banquet and party for the athletes. This year it was in the City Hall which was a really old building, we ate here and then they had buses going to a club for the party. As I had been ill all week I decided it was best I went back to the hotel for an early night. I hear it was a good night though.
DAY 5. Monday
Time to go home, but not before yet another team meeting!! Then it is onto the bus back to the airport before the flight home. I love flying into Heathrow as I am back in my house within an hour of landing! Mission accomplished for the relay squad but I took a bit of a step backwards in terms of my health. Time to recover and get ready to compete again, which is very soon!
Till the next time
Next stop on my tour took me to France, Strasbourg to be exact. I was running the 100 metres against a good field including 3 in-form Ukranian girls. The week leading up to this race had been good. I was feeling good in training and had managed to get quite a lot of rest. My journey to Strasbourg began at Heathrow airport, as so many of my trips do! Even though Strasbourg is pretty close to the UK I was having to get 2 flights there. The second flight was from Paris to Strasbourg, as I walked to my departure gate I saw the plane I was about to get on. It was one of those small planes, the only thing making me feel better was that it didn’t have propellers! However, despite my reservations the flight was very smooth and I was soon in Strasbourg. It doesn’t matter how many times you fly, when the plane starts bouncing up and down you still feel sick! I have had many turbulent flights but it still makes me very tense when the plane starts rocking.
This meet, despite being relatively small, had many big names running. Dwain Chambers, Kim Collins, Yohan Blake, Jonathon Borlee and Laura Turner (!) to name a few. I ran 11.43 and came 4th in my race. It was a messy race so was pleased it was 11.43 and not 11.5! It showed me what I needed to work on for my next race. This is what racing is all about, in my view. It shows you what you need to work on. I have plenty of time to work on this now as my next race is a relay at the European Team Championships, I then run a 200m in Slovakia on the 28th June.
My next blog will be from the European Team Championships in Stockholm. I’ll write a day to day account of what goes on at this meeting. We travel there on Thursday for the 2 day competition which means I only have a few days at home before I am off again. I live out of a suitcase during the summer, something you have to get used to as an athlete, along with airports, flying, long days, dodgy hotels, dodgy food, early mornings, random room-mates, delays and bad driving! All these come as part and parcel of a travelling athlete, not at all the glamorous lifestyle people think! Yes I am looking for sympathy!
Kind regards, your poor travelling sprinter!
It is that time of year again where I pack my bags and travel around Europe to race. During the indoor season I decided to blog from every race I went to, this turned out to be 1 outside of the UK. So I am going to continue this through to the outdoor season. I have already had a couple of races since returning from Arizona. First I went to Manchester to compete in the Street Race. I ran the 150m, I was heavily jet lagged but still managed to get down the track without too much embarrassment. Next was the annual trip to Loughborough. I faired a bit better here with my legs now over the jet lag. I won the 100m in 11.35s with a following wind of 2.4m/s, making the time illegal. The 200m was a funny race, I came off the bend last which is unusual for me. I made up some ground in the home straight but still only managed 6th place. My time of 23.69s was slow and also wind aided like the 100m. I also had my first relay outing of the season. I ran third leg for the England team and we won the race with some smooth change-overs.
Last weekend was my first at home since the beginning of march. It was nice to do normal things like housework, which I love! Rafael was on half term all week which was nice. We went to the cinema to watch Thor. It was good. I am quite easily pleased with films but Rafael is a complete film buff, he enjoyed it too. I have enjoyed spending the week catching up with all the paperwork that piled up while I was in Arizona, yes I do enjoy boring tasks like that!
We arrived in Regensburg early on Friday morning. Our hotel was the same as last year and we had problems with the rooms, they put two people in a room with only 1 bed. Luckily for me, my intended room-mate didn’t make the trip so I had a room to myself. After some food and a lie down we went to the track for a warm up. The track was nice, there was a very strong headwind but the sun was shining. Back to the hotel for dinner shortly followed by bed time, I was exhausted!!
Race day, the sun was out again which is always a bonus. I had a heat and final for the 100m, this is perfect for us sprinters, it seems such a waste to travel so far for just 11 seconds! I won my heat in 11.54 into a strong headwind of -2.9m/s, not too bad. The final was a different story, I finished 2nd in 11.57 with only a -1.5m/s head wind. I am pleased with my heat, it shows the shape I am in. The relay wasn’t successful, I shall say no more. We ate dinner at the meeting, they had tents with food. We managed to sneak into the VIP tent where the food was quite nice! Overall not a bad day, it showed me what I need to work on. All these races in the early season are just to get my race together, once I have done this the times should start getting quicker.
On the plane home now, my fiancé and I are going to Richmond tonight for dinner and a film. I think I might treat myself to a dessert! There is nothing exciting happening for me this week. I am just going to get a good week of training done ready for my race in France next week.
Thanks for reading
Hello from sunny Arizona. I am coming to the end of my trip now and have started thinking about coming home. This has been the best training camp I have ever been on, for a number of reasons. The accommodation is lovely, the weather has been amazing, the facilities are great, Scottsdale is lovely and I have trained like an athlete with some potential to run quick! I could quite easily live over here, I can think of no better place to prepare for the athletics season. But all good things must come to an end. I am now counting down the days till I have to pack up and get on my plane home.
Last time I blogged I was about to race. It was the Sun Devil meet at Arizona State University. It was a lovely day, a little windy but you can’t have everything. The 100m was a good race, I had a good start but my middle phase let me down. I came 2nd in 11.54 secs with a 0.9 wind. Coach was quite pleased with this, so I was too. Then onto the 200m which was only about 45 minutes later. I didn’t commit quite as well as I should have and ended up having to do a lot of work on the straight. I caught a couple of people but only managed 3rd place in a time of 24.00 secs, gutted to not break the 24 second barrier! A pretty good days work. I then raced again the following weekend at Glendale Community College. Another windy day, must be something about race day. I won the 100m in 11.52 secs running a better technical race than last week but unfortunately 2nd place was 12.31 secs so I didn’t have anyone to push me. On to the 200m, only 30 minutes rest this week. I committed to the bend this time, got onto the straight and hit the head wind! I won again in 23.91 secs into a -1.5 m/sec headwind, 2nd place was 25.25 so again I had no-one to push me. A couple of good time trials so again coach was pleased and so was I!
So now I am halfway through my last full week of training here. I know the technical issues I need to work on, I made some progress today. I am pleased with how the first couple of races have gone. I am leaving Arizona quicker than I left my training camp last year. I have a races lined up when I get home. First up is the Manchester Street Race 150m, then it’s onto the annual outing at Loughborough. The new Harrow AC club vest will have its first TV appearance on the 15th May where I will wear it for the Manchester Street Race, you don’t want to miss that! Keep checking my website and twitter for updates of how I am getting on.
I don’t know how I am going to survive in the UK without the TV channel tbs. I am officially addicted to Friends, According to Jim, Home Improvement, The Office and Everybody Loves Raymond. Other shows I have enjoyed are Four weddings, say yes to the dress and cake boss! Can you tell I have had lots of down time?
Remember you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Over and out
Once again I have left it tooooo long between blogs. The last time I blogged I was counting down the days till my trip to Arizona and I was getting ready to visit Dr Muller Wolfhart. I had a good trip to Munich to visit the Dr. He put some injections into some troubled areas and I flew home feeling refreshed and ready for the hard training waiting for me in Arizona.
I have been in Arizona for the past 5 weeks, training very hard. It has been different to my previous warm weather training trips, because it has been HOT! Arizona is very hot, everyday. This is what I come away for, it is far too cold in England to do the quality sessions that I need to do this time of year. I have seen improvements in my gym and track work so I am very pleased with my training so far. I am racing tomorrow, a 100m and 200m at Arizona State University. This will be the first time since joining Linford’s training group that I am racing because I am ready to, not because I have to. I am starting this season when I want to, the way I want, fit and healthy. This is a big contrast to the past 2 seasons where I have started racing to race myself fit as I had missed so much winter training. It is a great feeling.
Arizona hasn’t been all work though. Rafael came over for a week and we did some sight-seeing. We went to watch a baseball game which was fun. We also went to the Grand Canyon, this was absolutely amazing. We drove up there and stayed in a hotel so we could wake up early to watch sunrise, which was freezing cold!! We then had a look at the Canyon from viewpoints around the south rim. We also took a helicopter ride, this was amazing. We flew from the south rim to the north rim and back. It gave us a brilliant view of the Grand Canyon and we even saw the Colorado river flowing through. I also introduced Rafael to Cheesecake Factory. I usually make cheesecake at home but now he has tasted cheesecake from the Factory I feel my cheesecake will never be good enough!
Since being in Arizona I have become ever-so slightly addicted to the TBS TV channel. I watch Saved By The Bell, Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, The Office, Family Guy, Everybody Loves Raymond and According to Jim. I love them all! I have also found a show about a cake shop. They make the most amazing cakes, they are works of art. I am trying to work out how I could ship one back to England for my wedding.
Well I have just over 2 weeks left here, I will be sure to blog again before I leave. Of course I will have to update you on my races this weekend.
Hello, long time I know. I am sorry.
My indoor season came and went. It was short and sweet but did the job and now I am back to the torture of winter training.
I came 4th at the UK Indoor Championships in the 60m. Of course no one likes to come 4th but I was beaten by faster girls on the day. The winner and 2nd place (Jodie Williams and Bernice Wilson) will compete at the European Indoor Championships in Paris this weekend. I wish them good luck, this competition is fantastic opportunity for experience and success. We also have 3 members of “Team Christie” racing in Paris. Richard Strachan runs in the 400m and will be joined by Conrad Williams and Luke Lennon-Ford in the 4x400m relay. I hope you will all be watching and supporting them. I will be screaming at my TV this weekend. COME ON BOYS.
So I have been training hard for the last 3 weeks, and I mean hard! I think my coach has got excited by our groups successful indoor campaign, training has been torturous. I only have 2 weeks and 2 days (not that I am counting) till I leave for a spot of warm weather training in Arizona. This is going to be a pivotal time of year for me. It will be the first time (since I have been in Linford’s group) I am going warm weather training without having a foot injury all winter. I am hoping I will feel the difference and be a little fitter! The trouble is when you are fitter you run faster, so I doubt I will be any better off!
I have been busy off the track too. As part of my “Team Ealing” duties I visited a Sports Hall Athletics competition. I wasn’t lucky enough to compete in it when I was young but it was really great fun. The children had a great time and I even spotted a few potential stars. I was there just to encourage them to join their local club and show that local people can achieve sporting success. I also presented the medals and trophies at the end of the competition.
I performed in a concert with my Orchestra last week (we are called the Instrumentalists as there aren’t enough of us to be called an orchestra!) and had to step up to play the 1st flute part at the last minute as our 1st flute couldn’t make the concert. I managed to stand in rather well, if I say so myself, and gave myself the nickname “super sub”! My fiancé and parents came to watch, it was like my high school concerts all over again (minus the fiancé)!
I also went to watch a Super League netball match. My friend plays for Hertfordshire Mavericks (http://www.mavericksnetball.co.uk). They play their home matches at Hertfordshire University in Hatfield. I would recommend getting down there to watch a game, it is fantastic to watch. I am happy to say they won by quite a margin!
I have also done some filming this week for Sky Sports and Ealing Council. The Sky Sports filming was for a feature called “Road to the Olympics”. They were there all day filming me train, followed by an interview at the end of the session. I’ll let you know when it will be on, be sure to tune in. The filming for Ealing council was for their website. I am a member of Team Ealing and receive a grant from them. This feature accompanies an interview on the website and was just an insight into what I do at training and my plans for the next few months. I’ll put up the link when it goes live.
Next week I am off to see Dr Muller Wolfhart. He is in Munich and is AMAZING! It is just a check-up before I go warm weather training to make sure my body is ready. Trips to see him normally involve realignment from the best Chiropractor I have ever experienced, a few x rays, blood tests and some injections. It is a day trip to Munich but I will come back ready to tackle Arizona.
On a different note, TV shows I am really enjoying at the moment: One Born Every Minute, The Model Agency, Embarrassing Bodies and Come Dine With Me. All on Channel 4, interesting. I will miss these when I go away but I make sure my hard drive is full of TV shows and films to keep me entertained!
Thanks for reading folks, take a look around the rest of my website and feel free to send me a message.
Hello from Chemnitz, Germany! I have decided to write a blog each time I am away to give you a sense of what it is like. I often get people asking me about what I do when I am away, what happens and how it all works so I thought I would shed some light.
It isn’t a glamorous lifestyle, well not for me anyway. I’m sure if I was Olympic Champion I would be flying first class, racing the top class meets and staying in luxury hotels. Those of us who aren’t quite there (yet) have to settle for cattle class, races in unknown towns (Chemnitz?!) and sometimes rather dodgy hotels. I am happy to say that my current hotel is not too shabby.
So my races are organised through my agent at Nuff Respect (www.nuff-respect.co.uk), I am asked which races I would like to do, I email my wish list and they sort it all out. Once I have been confirmed into a race I will get all the information I need, flight details, name of the race, bonus involved, contact for the meet. I then jump on the plane to my destination. Today I left Heathrow and landed in Dresden, Germany. This was only 24 hours after landing in the UK from Doha; that is another story!!
Once I landed and picked up my luggage I was met at the airport by a driver who then drove me to the hotel in Chemnitz, a 45 minute drive. I found out that Chemnitz has the oldest population in Germany and in ten years’ time it will have the oldest population in Europe. This is not the place to come to party! Once at the hotel there was a desk set up for the meeting, I picked up my numbers and meal tickets then went to the reception desk to get my room key. I am lucky this trip in that I have a room to myself but usually we share with another athlete. Sometimes you get lucky and you share with another British athlete but normally it is with an athlete from another country.
Dinner was ok, nothing exciting. I ate quickly then came back to my room to watch Curb Your Enthusiasm (which I am little bit addicted to) and have a shower. I will wake up tomorrow and work out how I will spend my day before I race in the evening. I am very regimented on race day and write down a schedule of when and what to eat, bus times, warm up times and when to take my various drinks before I compete. This will not come as a surprise to those who know me! Goodnight.
So yesterday was race day. I woke up and wrote my plan, it was tricky as my first race was not until 8.25pm. I had to kill time till the evening, which I managed! Race time and off to the track I went, there was a shuttle service from the hotel which took 10 minutes. The track was really good, fast surface and there were quite a few seats considering the size of the meeting. I started warming up for my heat and felt ok. The race wasn’t as good as I had hoped and only managed to 7.42 for second place and just about made the final. The final wasn’t much better only running 7.41, consistent at least!! I wasn’t too down hearted as I had only returned from Doha the day before I flew to Germany. I got to 10 metres first which shows I am doing one thing ok. I need to get home, rest up and work on a few things ready for my next race.
So, the day after the night before. I have woken up with a cold, typical. I am not leaving the hotel till 2pm for the airport so have been able to relax this morning. On reflection I am glad to have got my indoor season underway, a little slower than I would’ve liked but I have to be realistic about the circumstances I raced under, not great preparation!
So now I am going to take myself and my snotty nose back to the UK. My poor cats are confused, I will enjoy my 5 days at home before my next stop!
Bye for now
Hello. Long time no speak! Those of you who follow me on twitter will know I am currently in Doha on a training trip. For those who don’t follow me on twitter, why not (LauraTurner100)?! I have been here 10 days now with only 3 days left. The facilities here in Doha are amazing, first class, can’t be beaten!! Last time I was here was for the holding camp before the Commonwealth Games. It was absolutely baking hot then, hitting 40 degrees most days. Well this time hasn’t been as hot (int eh 20’s), and we have even had rain for 2 days (luckily one of the days was a rest day!) Today was absolutely glorious, it also happened to be a day off so we took advantage of the weather in the morning and sat by the pool. After a spot of lunch we went to the Sooq to have a look around. This is a big outdoor market with shops, restaurants and cafes etc. I am now very sleepy but we have dinner soon so that will perk me up!
The purpose of the trip was to prepare for the indoor season. This will be my first indoor season with Linford. When I arrived here in Doha I didn’t want to race, I didn’t feel ready and was a bit apprehensive. After the last 10 days of training I cannot wait to race!! I managed yet another personal best in the clean (77.5kg) and a massive seasons best in the bench press (65kg, only 2.5kg off my lifetime best), along with some brilliant track sessions that have given me confidence in my speed endurance. That is exactly why we came here, to refocus and get ready for the competitions ahead. I am aiming for the European indoor Championships in march, but first I have to qualify at the trials on the 12th February. I am not yet 100% sure where I will start my indoor season but I know one thing for sure, I WILL BE READY.
Watch this space for updates on how my indoor season goes.
Bye for now
Happy New Year!! And Merry Christmas!! Hope everyone had a good Christmas season.
I have had a nice few weeks. A quiet family Christmas followed by a very civilised new year, I must be growing up!! Christmas is always a very indulgent affair in the Turner household. There are always far too many presents and far too much food. My presents from my family this year were all inspired by dessert Friday. I got lots of cookery books and cookware. I need to step my game up with the desserts now; maybe chocolate soufflés this Friday? Hmmmmmm we shall see.
Yesterday my Dad and I went to watch Spurs play Fulham at White Hart Lane. We won 1-0 so we were happy!! I love going to watch Spurs play. I wish I could afford to go there more often. For now it remains a treat.
Just watching The Cube on ITV. We love it!! I’m so sure I would be good at it, and yes that is me being a little big headed. I think I am well coordinated and smart enough to win a lot of money on it. Could someone put a good word in to Philip Schofield please! Also, Total Wipeout is a show I think I could do. I think I should leave that one until I have finished athletics!!
Training is going well. I am improving and making the most of every day. I am leaving for Doha next week for a few weeks of warm weather training, before I start my indoor season. I am very much looking forward to the indoor season. It will be my first one since joining Linford’s group. I am keeping my fingers and toes crossed and training smart so I make it there in one piece.
That’s all for now folks
Well well well!! For those of you who tuned into BBC Sports Personality of the Year on sunday night, you may have seen me sitting in the audience with a rather strange grin on my face!
Despite the snow we managed to get up to Birmingham to attend the awards evening. Before the show started we were lucky enough to be invited into the LG hospitality area. Lots of nice food and familiar faces, good start to the evening. We were then shown to our seats. The man showing me was walking closer and closer to the front. I finally got to my seat and it was the second row next to Jo Pavey, result. There were some empty seats in front of me so I had a look to see whos name was on these seats. Imagine my surprise when I saw Brooklyn Beckham, looking further to my right I saw the rest of the Beckham clan!! Looking to my left I saw Ryan Giggs, Andrew Flintoff, Lee Westwood to name a few! Great seat, I couldn't believe it - nice one Nuff Respect!!
So after some warm up acts and talks, the show began. While the show is going live there are screens to the far left and right that show the live feed. It is very tempting to look at these screens to see what is going on, there are cameras everywhere and they sometimes obscure your view of the stage. I thought I was probably going to be shown on TV, sitting behind last years winner and this years Lifetime Achievement recipient! I did try not to stare at the Beckhams but I was probably looking at them for 80% of the show!!
Then it was on to the after show party. Check out who I managed to get pictures with.
That's right, it's DAVID GINOLA! I could not believe it. The after show party was great. Chatting to the guys and girls of track and field. So nice to see Jess Ennis pick up third place for the second year in a row. Phil Taylor was delighted with second place, 15 World titles?!?! Not sure that will ever happen in track and field!!!
And this is me with James Cordon. It took Nicola Sanders and myself quite a while to build up the courage to ask him!! Over all it was a great night, I had a brilliant time.
Christmas is only a few days away. I am prepared and ready. Not that I have to do much, my mum cooks Christmas dinner, although I have heard rumours that my sister may cook it this year! Either way, I'm not cooking it!!
Merry Christmas everyone, thank you for your support.
Over and out
Well, time has flown by; I must be having fun!! I have just finished my 4th week of training, not that I am counting. It has been good but strange without Linford. We are all working hard so he will see how well we have done since he has been gone. Thursdays track session was absolutely freezing. I did feel sorry for Ron stood there timing us, as much as we were moaning it must have been worse for him. This is why Ron keeps winning all these awards for being a coaching legend, because he is!! Had a nice massage today though which made my legs feel better. It was from a company called KTB Physiotherapy, who are now working with our squad. We are all looking forward to the benefits of regular therapy and Pilates classes. You can find more information about KTB Physiotherapy here www.pilatesandtherapy.co.uk
So how do you think Linford is getting on in the jungle? I think he is doing well now. He has got over the first few difficult days when you are getting to know each other. I hope people will vote for him to stay in now voting has started. Can you believe that snake bite that Shaun got? That was awful. Keep voting to make Linford “King of the Jungle”.
Since I last wrote I have joined an instrumental group. It is at Brunel on a Monday evening, there is not a full complement of instruments to call it an orchestra so they call themselves The Instrumentalists. I have been to two rehearsals so far and have a concert this Wednesday, nothing like jumping in at the deep end!! I am really enjoying doing something different and reawakening some dormant talents.
OOOOOhhhhh I’m a celebrity is on now so I must dash!!
I thought I should blog tonight. As some of you may know, my coach (Linford Christie) is going in to the Jungle tonight. There are some nerves about what he will have to do and who they will put him in there with. But those who know Linford will know that he will handle anything that is thrown at him with dignity, confidence and always with quality. He is an Olympic Champion after all. I really hope the public get behind him and vote him to be “King of Jungle”; if anything just so we can call him that at training!! I am looking forward to everyone getting to see the amazing man that we all know and love. COME ON COACH CHRISTIE!!
I have now settled into my routine of my usual life again. Training is as hard as ever, especially as I have been put in charge since Linford left. We have a nice big group now. We all support each other and work hard. I am enjoying having some new faces around the place. I have had a chance to get away for a few days. Last weekend I went away with my friends to a cottage in the Cotswolds. It was so lovely to see everyone together (there were 15 of us in total) for a change. Since we have all grown up, some have moved away so we don’t get to spend as much come together as we did when we were younger. We had a great time, apart from a 10 mile bike ride with a mammoth hill thrown in for free!! I am not ashamed to admit that I got off and walked the last part. As I kept reminding people, “I AM NOT AN ENDURANCE ATHLETE”!! It has become an annual event now. One I look forward to every year.
That’s it from me. Don’t forget to pick up your phone and vote for Linford to be crowned KING OF THE JUNGLE.
So it's back to reality for me! My two and half weeks off were lovely, possible my longest ever rest! I was more than ready to return to training and the routine it brings. My main aim for this winter is to stay injury free!! I haven't managed that since I joined Linford's group, both winters missing 10 weeks with foot injuries. So we are determined to make it through the winter and have an indoor season. If I can do that then who knows what I will be capable of. For now I am keeping everything crossed and doing everything right to try and stay injury free.
I did enjoy my break and managed to do a few things I wouldn't normally do. I did 2 spinning classes which were very difficult, pilates, netball and eating a massive plate of ribs with chips followed by a chocolate brownie and ice cream.
A question for you. What colour would you most associate me, the athlete Laura Turner, with and why? Answers to my inbox in the contact me section of my website, I would be interested to hear your answers and I will explain why next time I write.
I am off on a tour of the Olympic Site on wednesday. I will be able to see first hand the progress of the building work. It will be quite exciting to get a sneaky peak, not many people will get this chance.
It's my youngest cats birthday today, she is 2. Happy birthday Sisko. She had an extra piece of cod for dinner as a treat, I just hope we dont see it again later!!
Massive discovery today. I like sushi!! As long as I stick to the "no raw fish" selections, I'm ok. I had a pack today from tesco and thoroughly enjoyed it, very tasty. Could become a regular lunch time snack.
That's it till next time
So. I have now been back for a week and living a life that is completely alien to me. I have 2 weeks off training so have been eating what I like and doing pretty much nothing. My food shop in tesco was very different from my usual. It contained a lot of chocolate and not much fruit!!
I wonder if I will eat this much junk when I retire? I think the novelty will wear off after a while. But for now it is nice to enjoy eating the junk I normally do not eat.
I have had a cold for the last week so not really felt up to doing much. I am hoping once it has shifted I will get my energy back. We are all off to Go Ape on sunday for my sisters birthday, which is today. Raf and I have been before and it was so much fun. Looking forward to that.
So glad that Desperate Housewives is back on our screens! I love it and am actually watching the first episode for the second time right now. Dexter is also back in America. If you haven't seen it then I suggest you find it, it is a brilliant show.
bye for now
Well!!!! What a roller coaster of a Commonwealth Games it was for me. It started with the 100m. After a promising run in the semi final I was confident going into the final. I wont go into what was to follow, I am sure most people saw it. I truely believe everything happens for a reason. It obviously wasnt't my time but I know there is something bigger and better waiting for me, I will keep working hard with my coach in the faith that my time will come. I was so happy to receive so many messages of support from people. I was more proud of the messages about how I conducted myself. I am so proud that I came across as a decent human being, this is much more important to me than being a decent athlete. I can hold my head up high.
I also gave the 200m a go but this was mission impossible as my quad was too tight. I pulled out of the semi final so I would be able to run the relay. The day of the relay arrived and we were all excited. I was on third leg, a leg I feel very comfortable running. I was very nervous, more nervous than I have been for anything in a long long time! As soon as I got the baton from Montell I knew we were winning. All I had to do was get the baton safely into Abi's hand. I did this and Abi bought it home for the English girls. It was a great moment doing a lap of honour, the crowd were just amazing. I was very happy and enjoyed all the interviews that followed.
The next day I went to the Taj Mahal. It was an early start but well worth it. They put on a special train for us and we travelled in a convoy of 50 buses all day. It is very humbling going to visit these places. It was the second wonder of the world that I have visited.
I learned so much about the history of the Taj Mahal. When the Queen of India found out she was going to die, she asked the King for 2 things. The first was that he never re-married and the second that he mark her death. So the Taj Mahal, which means crown palace, is a tomb of the Queen of India. It was built in the 1600's and took 22 years to build. It is made of marble which changes colour depending on the time of day. The palace is symmetrical, the temples either side are also identical. The four pillars are built slightly leaning outwards so if they were to fall they wouldn't damage the Taj. It really is a brilliant piece of architecture. I was amazed at its beauty. An amazing day.
I also went to watch England beat Jamaica in the bronze medal match in the netball, that was brilliant!! The game is so fast and quite rough considering it is meant to be a non contact sport. The England girls were amazing, well done.
So now I am home and rather ill!! I felt a cold coming on in Delhi and it is now in full flow. I think it is an accumulation of the whole seasons emotions coming out, in which case I will be in bed for a while!! I went to my good friend Anna's wedding yesterday in Manchester. It was such a lovely day. I send my love to Anna and Simon Powell!!
Now is recovery time. I have 2 weeks off training. I will spend the next couple of weeks sorting things out for next year. I will be finding a way to still train full time in preparation for next year and the all important 2012 Olympics. There is one thing for sure, this season of ups and downs is going to help me in the next few years of my career.
Well here I am. We are finally getting closer to the Commonwealth Games. I am out in Doha, Qatar, for a holding camp before I head to Delhi. I have been here since the 21st september and have had an absolutely amazing week!
We are training at the ASPIRE Training Centre. It is possibly the most amazing sports venue I have ever seen, well it actually is the most amazing sports venue I have ever seen! There is an indoor track and gym and an outdoor track which is the warm up track for the main stadium. There is also a swimming pool, diving boards, indoor football pitch, gymnastics hall and many more sports halls to name but a few.
Training outside can get pretty hot with temperatures yesterday reaching 42 degrees!! It took me about 5 days to get acclimatised and I am now able to train outside with not too much discomfort. Blocks yesterday was quite difficult as the track was so hot it was burning our fingers. We poured water on the track but it would be dry by the time we came back from one run!! Needless to say training has been going really well and I am looking forward to finishing the 2010 season with a bang.
It has not all been work though. We have made friends with some guys who work here and yesterday we were treated to a boat trip!! It was one of my favourite days ever!! I had such an amazing time. I was smiling the whole day! Apart from one hairy moment where we were taken on a small fishing boat to go fishing further out to sea than the main boat. We were speeding along nicely when the guy driving turned a little too sharply. The next thing we know the local guy at the front of the boat has dived into the sea thinking the boat was going to capsize!! I thought I was going in!! Luckily we did not capsize, I like to think it was me diving the opposite direction that stopped the boat tipping but I doubt my small frame would have made much difference with all the big guys on the boat!!
This is the main boat, you can't really see how big it is but there are 3 levels. There was a jet ski attached to the boat as well. On our fishing trip the 2 local guys that took us caught 20 fish and us Brits caught absolutely nothing!! We were convinced there was a secret they weren't telling us!! Back to the main boat and it was dark by this stage. The boat was lit up with red lights and it looked magnificent as we arrived back. They cooked us a traditional Arab dinner of rice with chicken, it was lovely. As we chilled out on the top deck listening to music, we were driven back to the port. The view coming back in was spectacular. The skyline in Doha is amazing. The buildings are all 4 years old or less and are all different.
We arrived back at the hotel and I still felt like I was on the boat, it felt like the room was swaying side to side!!! I have a rest day today so am chilling out this morning. This afternoon I will go to a place called Sooq Waqif. It is a market (Sooq) which is very old but has be re-done inside so it looks lovely. I cannot wait to see what it is like, I will take lots of photos.
Next time I blog I will be in the village! Lets hope I don't find a snake in my room!!
Bye for now
I am currently sat in Milan Malpensa airport following my last race in europe for the season. I won the race so I couldn’t have asked for a better way to round off my European tour this year. It is funny that I am sat in the exact same airport my tour began back in May. The trip in May was, however, a bit more traumatic in that my flight was cancelled and I was left stranded in the airport for hours!! Fingers crossed, so far so good today. I have checked my bag in and am now waiting to board the plane. It is ridiculously early right now (5.30 am English time) so needed some breakfast to wake me up for the journey home. What does an athlete choose to eat for breakfast? A chocolate croissant and a kit kat washed down with an electrolyte drink of course!! The meet last night was great. My race wasn’t until 9.45pm! That is normally my bed time, its amazing what a bit of caffeine can do. The last race of the night was at 10.50pm. After much complaining about how late the meet was, we realised the name of the meeting was “Notturna Di Milano”, suddenly it all made sense!
Tomorrow is a very exciting day for me, we have our team meeting for the Commonwealth Games at Neasden Temple. As we get closer to the Games I get more and more excited. I have had a lot of people ask me if I am worried about the food there. The answer is no! The caterers are the same we had for the Commonwealth Games in 2006 so I am in doubt that I will eat well with limited amounts of food poisoning! I am hoping the kit will be nice. It is not a good feeling to have to wear dodgy kit for over a week, doesn’t do much for morale. I have never been inside Neasden temple, only driven past it, so it will be nice to see what it is like on the inside.
One more race to go before I depart for the holding camp in Doha, that is the Newcastle Street Race which is an Ashes set up (i.e England vs Australia). I will be running the 150m against fellow English sprinter Montell Douglass and Aussie Melissa Breen (both of whom were in the race last night) and one other aussie who is yet to be confirmed! I really enjoyed the last street sprint in Manchester which I won, so I am looking forward to this one now to.
So keep your eyes peeled to the BBC next Saturday. My last outing before the BIG ONE!!
Over and out
So. How much chocolate a day is too much? Is one piece a day acceptable? I'm not talking a whole chocolate bar or piece of cake a day but A PIECE of chocolate a day, that's ok right? So today my chocolate intake has included one chocolate from a box I was given for my birthday. Maybe I should ask my nutritionist? On second thoughts ...........
I would say I am a chocaholic but at the same time I am in control of my addiction. Raf (my fiance) just had a piece of chocolate cheesecake and said he would eat it in the other room so I didn't want any! I told him that I had control of myself, so he ate it on the sofa with me and I was fine. Just had to wipe my mouth from the dribble. I joke of course!! I would be interested to hear how much chocolate other people consume on a daily or weekly basis.
I raced today! The first time since the European Championships over 3 weeks ago. It was a race I used to get rid of the cob webs, I knew it would not be a fast run so I went to an open meeting in Horsham, West Sussex. I had a great time, despite the persistant rain! I ran with the senior men which was good for me. The 200 was up first, I ran 24.2 and came 4th. The 100m was a few hours later and I ran 11.6 for 4th place again. I wasn't even going to look at the times as they were not relevant today, the idea was to get my legs back in the race mode. I am, however, glad I was correct with my prediction of a slow return to racing.
The track I was at today had a small indoor area (which I discovered AFTER I was soaked through following the 200m).One of the walls was painted with a time line of athletes, starting with an ancient Olympic athlete. And who do I see about half way up the wall, Mr Linford Christie. I took a picture and e mailed it to him, I think it would be quite funny to see yourself painted on a wall!! But what a brilliant idea to decorate an indoor athletics area.
So a few exciting things happening this week. I'm getting my hair cut, ONLY JOKING! The Commonwealth Games team is announced tomorrow morning, so I can't tell you yet if I have been selected. Would I still be racing if I wasnt going? hhmmmmmmm who knows! I will write more on this subject after the team has been announced. It is my fiances birthday on thursday, wont mention his age but he is DEFINATELY older than me. And this week (wednesday) is a whole year sicnce Raf propsed, ahhhh.
Wedding plans have been coming along nicely. We went back to visit our reception venue on saturday morning, it's even more perfect than we thought! Mum came along so the three of us have gone into wedding over drive, with Raf even getting his suits sorted yesterday! Suffice to say I have it all under control, of course.
Thank you for reading
It's now almost 3 weeks post European Championships and I have been enjoying my break from travelling and racing.
I have had a few highlights since I have been back. The first was my friend Emily's hen night. We went to a Jools Holland concert where we sat and had a picnic. It was lovely, a very sophisticated hen night. We managed to get all the girls together for the first time in a good 5 years!
Emily (the hen) is being held up by the rest of us. We are a combination of high school friends and friends' girlfriends.
Then came my birthday. I turned 28 on the 12th August. This was the first birthday in the UK since 2004. So it was lovely to wake up in my own bed, see my boyfriend (sorry Fiance), my family and a few friends.
And finally the WEDDING!! Emily and Chris were married on Saturday 14th August, which is why I was missing from the London Grand Prix! It was such a lovely wedding, the food was amazing, lovely venue and a brilliant Ceilidh in the evening! I am so glad I was able to share their special day with them, thank you Emily and Chris Webber!
So now I am desperate to race again. I have had a good 3 weeks off racing, had some good training sessions, regrouped and am now ready to run fast again! I will find out tomorrow if I am selected for the Commonwealth Games in Delhi. I am hoping to run the 100 metres. It is an event that holds so many fantastic memories for me. Melbourne 2006 was my first Commonwealth Games and I finished 4th in the 100 metres and won a silver in the relay. The Commonwealth Games is so different to any other championships I have competed in. I am really looking forward to running there. I will have some races lined up before then though so keep checking here to find out what I am up to.
Big brother is calling me now, yes I have been watching since I have been back, JOSIE TO WIN!!
Well by now I am sure you all know how I got on in Barcelona. Not well!! The 100 metres was strange. I have never felt like that in a race before, I will learn from it and become a better athlete as a result. The relay was also a disaster. We didn't qualify for the final and to top it off I fell over after I crossed the finish line and ended up with track burns down my right leg, painful!!
I cant believe the European Championships is over already!! Team GB did soooo well, it was great to be part of it. The vibe around the team hotel was tremendous. It is a good sign going forward for the World Championships next year and onto the Olympics in 2012.
So now going forward ........... I am not racing for a few weeks, I am going to be a normal person. Last night we celebrated my dads 60th birthday. He was actually 60 in Barcelona (the day after I ran the 100m semi) so we had a meal last night and me and my sister gave him his presents. Does anyone else find it really hard to buy presents for their dad? We always struggle with him!! Today I am going to my friend Emily's hen do. I cant say what we are doing yet as it is a surprise and would hate her to read this and spoil it!! Sunday is a BBQ at our friend Sophie's house. Then next weekend is Emily and Chris' wedding!! Cant wait! They are the first in our circle of friends to get married, closely followed by Anna and Simon in October and me and Rafael in February. Bets are open for the next couple to get engaged!! I am really looking forward to my 2 weeks of normality.
I would like to share with you a part of a poam that I have read over and over in the last week. It is the "If" poem by Rudyard Kipling. The full poem is quite long so go and google it, but this part has been particularly apt for me this week and has helped me.
"If you can dream - and not make dreams your master. If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim. If you can meet with triumph and disaster and treat those two imposters just the same"
Over and out
I have arrived at the holding camp for the European Championships. We are in an all inclusive luxury hotel in Monte Gordo, Portugal and I have got to say that it is TREMENDOUS!! I arrived late thursday evening so training started first thing saturday morning. I am lucky enough to have my coach out here too. There are also 3 other members of my training group in the team, Conrad Williams, Mark Lewis-Francis and Katherine Endacott.
I am sharing with my room mate of 5 years, Nicola Sanders. We always share and often get mistaken for each other, we cant see why people find it so difficult to tell us apart!
This is the track we have been training at. It has been 37 degrees for the last few days, dropped down to about 30 degrees today!!
People often wonder what we do with our time while we are away. Well the answer is, not much! There is an atheltes lounge with wifi internet access, table tennis, various games and a TV where we can hang out and relax. I like to watch tv series in my room, my particular favourite at the moment in Curb Your Enthusaiam. It is hilarious, a definate watch for those who like Ricky Gervais. Larry David's (the writer and star of the show, he wrote Seinfield) humour is quite similar, a great tv series.We had a team quiz on sunday night, hosted by Fuzz Ahmed (National High Jump coach). It was really fun. People who know Fuzz will have an idea what it entailed. Vuvuzeulas, whistles, bells, silly forfits and lots of laughs. Our team didnt win but it was a good laugh all the same, thanks Fuzz.
I am enjoying a day off today but will be practicing relay changes tomorrow. Just 3 more sessions left till I race. I am off to Barcelona on Saturday, that is when it starts getting serious!!
For now, over and out
WOW, my feet have barely touched the ground since I last wrote.
I took a few days off after the trials then got ready to race again. I went to Switzerland to try and get the qualifying time, and I did!! After running 11.33 with a small headwind in my heat, I ran 11.11 in the final. A personal best, qualifying time and 3rd fastest British woman ever! I was pleased, of course, but my focus is the European Championships so it was back to business very quickly.
After one night at home I then flew to Greece, Crete. The hotel we stayed in was amazing! Right on the beach, beautiful weather, lovely rooms. The race was pretty good too! I came third in 11.33 and beat some good girls. I pulled out of the 200m as a precation as my quad was a bit tight.
The next morning I flew back to Heathrow, not before an 8 hour wait at Athens airport! Then a flight from Heathrow to Newcastle for the Gateshead Diamond League. This race didn't go too well but it was my 10th race in two weeks and I had been on 8 flights in 6 days, so I didn't beat myself up about it.
So now I am home. Today I went to watch my sister play in a netball tournament. They finished joint third after the group stages but ended up in the 5th and 6th place play off which they won. Heather (my sister) played very well, she was in defence and has very long arms so makes lots on interceptions. She also look very stylish when she plays! My friend Rosie Cotton also played in a different team, we used to play in our school team together.
I am now off to the pub to watch the World Cup Final with my friends. I haven't seen them in ages! I hope the Nehterlands win by the way!!
Bye for now
Well well well. What a weekend!! Did you see it? This weekend I became the UK 100 metre and 200 metre Champion.
After a narrow victory in the 100m, where I beat Joice Maduaka by a mere 0.01 of a second, I finished off the weekend with another victory in the 200m with my training partner Katherine Endacott finishing in third. I was very pleased with my victories but I still haven't secured my place in the team for the European Championships in Barcelona. I am racing again on Sunday in Switzerland to try and seal the deal!!
I wouldn't of been surprised if you missed my race at the weekend given the rather large football game that took place. I didn't know the result untill I was driving home at around 8pm! I do have a certain amount of sympathy for the England players. Having people say you are not trying when you play for your country must be hard to hear. These guys are athletes and have had to compete for places on teams since they were small boys so I do not doubt their commitment. From my own experiences I know it is possible for us, as athletes, to become complacent and comfortable in our situations without realising it. It takes a serious disappoinment to make us realise this. I hope Fabio stays on as manager, so Harry Redknapp will stay as Spurs manager! I also hope the players use this time to evaluate their positions in the sport. I had a similar experience and I used the time productivley and have come out on the other side a stronger athlete.
I say lay off the players, they didn't lose on purpose. They are athletes and will want to improve on their performances. Maybe we should of sent the under 23 team, they haven't had time to get complacent!
I have a very busy week in store including Switzerland, Greece and Gateshead. Keep checking for updates on my progress.
Hello, long time no blog!!
I have had an extremely busy couple of weeks. The last time I blogged I had just raced at Lougborough. I then wene to race in Germany, where I won. Then went again to Germany the following week, and came 2nd running a big season best of 11.44. This was a great confidence boost for me as I had run quicker every week since april.
I now write to you the Championship Record holder for the 100metres at the European team Championships!! I have just arrived back from Bergen, Norway. Some of you may have seen me run the 100 metres for Great Britain in the European Team Championships. I won my race, which was the B-race. My time of 11.31 was not only a seasons best but put me third overall after the A-race had been run. However, as the A-race had a 2.4 metre per second wind behind them the winning time of 11.24 could not count as the Championship record. My time of 11.31 was wind legal so now stands as the Championship record. Did you get all that!!!
I then ran in the relay on third leg. We finished 4th but were later given 3rd as the French were disqualified. Our time of 43.77 was ok but we will have to run quicker than that if we want to win the European Championships in July.
Norway was such a beautiful country. It doesnt get dark which was strange. Me and my room mate (Nicola Sanders) were sat chatting one evening and hadnt realised it was past 11pm as it was still bright day light outside. Thank goodness for blackout curtains!! The team finished 2nd overall behing Russia which was one place higher than last year.
So the next adventure for me is the UK Championships and European Championship trials in Birmingham this weekend. I will be running the 100 metres and 200 metres. I am really looking forward to this competition. The weather should be nice so fingers crossed for some good times. It will be shown on the BBC so tune in.
Next time I blog I will hopefully be a very happy athlete!!
Bye for now
Another interesting week in the life of Laura Turner!! The last time I wrote I was a train on my way up to Manchester for the Manchester Street race. Those who tuned in will already know that I won that race. It was a really fun day I am was happy to be part of the event.
After the joy of winning, things took a turn for the worse and on monday evening I developed awful chest pains and severe heart burn. This persisted until tuesday morning when I took my self to A&E to be told I had aggravated my stomach lining as a result of me taking too much ibuprofen on an empty stomach. I took the ibuprofen to try and alleviate a slightly achey knee, which it did! Every cloud! So I was given some medicine to heal the lining and sent on my way. The pain persisted for 3 days which made it very difficult for me to eat anything. I was finally able to train on thursday which was just in time for me to come up to Lougborough on Friday for a Great Britain relay squad weekend.
So I now write to you from my hotel room in Loughborough. We had a practice yesterday followed by various meetings and team talks. Tomorrow we will race in the annual Loughborough International Atheltics meeting. I am running the 100metres for England, the 200metre as a guest and the relay for Great Britain. It is a busy day but will be a great training day for this phase of the season. Things start hotting up towards the end of May so this should set me up nicely. I am very excited to be passing the baton to my friend and training partner Katherine Endacott who is running 4th leg for the Great Britain relay team.
I must also mention my little sister who this week won two awards at her netball club, Breezers. She won Clubwoman of the year and Player of the year (shared with another member). I go and watch her play and always enjoy it. I convince myself I will play netball when I finish athletics but it looks so fast and the game lasts for an hour, I'm not sure I would keep up!! Well done Hev, you're a star.
Until next time
WOW! What a couple of weeks I have had. I arrived home from San Diego safe and sound. I quickly settled back into my new routine of training and working but struggled with the sleeping part! This is very unusual for me but I have to say jet lag hit me hard this time. Despite this I was soon jetting off again, this time to Italy.
I had a race in Pavia, just outside Milan. The meet was pretty uneventful, I won my race and got drowned when the heavens opened. The rest of the trip was more eventful however! On arriving at Milan airport to go home my flight had been delayed an hour and a half. So I went to get some dinner, only to return to see it had been delayed another hour and a half. This pattern continued untill my flight was finally delayed a total of six and a half hours (departing at 03.45) to then be told it was actually cancelled!! After another hour wait at the airport, Easyjet took us to a hotel where we stayed the night. The next morning, after being dragged from a rather rare good nights sleep, I arrived back at the airport to be told I would not be able to get home until the follwing day. Well, those who know me will be laughing now because I am a very stubborn person and if I want to get home today, I will get home today! So while my fellow British athletes collected their belongings ready for another night in a random Milan hotel, I got on the internet and booked a flight home that day with Lufthansa. It was then a case of my wonderful fiance picking me up from Heathrow and taking me to Gatwick to pick up my car, a short drive later I was home!
Since being home I managed 5 nights of good sleep in a row which has left me feeling rather smug!! I also had my girl friends round to mine last night. We chatted, laughed and ate pizza which is the perfectr recipe for a lovely evening.
So now sitting in First Class on my train up to the Manchester Street Race I feel like my old self again for the first time since touching down from San Diego. For that I must thank Lufthansa, my comfy bed and my friends!
Tune in to BBC2 at 16.30 on Sunday 16th May to watch me run the 100metres at the Manchester Street Race.
Over and out,
Get the violins out, I am leaving San Diego today. I have had a brilliant 6 weeks out here, I raced twice (more than I ever have this time of year) and produced a handful of training best performances. I was meant to race this week but my adductor got tight on thursday so I played it safe and rested. My body was getting a bit fatigued from a hard training block and it was trying to tell me something, so I listened and shut down training for a few days.
I went on an adventure on saturday to Seaport Village. As I was driving there I realised how lucky I am to be able to travel the world and spend time in these beautiful locations. I think as athletes we can sometimes take it for granted. So as I drove to my destination I was giving thanks for the opportunities I have been given which put me in a great mood for my day trip.
Seaport Village is a small shopping area located next to the harbour. The shops were all independent stores and I really enjoyed looking around them all. I even found a Christmas decoration shop, my mum would've been in heaven!!
Aside the shops there was small stalls and attractions along the harbour including a guy dressed as Mickey Mouse which I avoided as I have a fear of anything dressed up!!
So now I am all packed up and ready to go. I like being out here as I train really well but I am also excited to be going home. I have a lot of exciting things happening including organising my wedding. I cannot wait to get back to that!!
Next time I write I will be back in the UK.
Till the next time
It seems like just a few days ago I wrote my last post, I can't believe how these weeks are flying by.
It seems the air space is back open and people are gradually getting back home. I am dropping my training partner at the airport tomorrow, a week later than planned!! This whole episode has once again showed the human race that we are not as powerful as we think, a natural disaster can disrupt the whole world and there is nothing we can do about it.
I have had a peaceful week, just training, resting, eating and racing! I wrote my first ever magazine article this week which was fun. It will be featured in the "Around Ealing" magazine which is distributed free to residents of ealing. I think it goes out at the start of the month so keep your eyes peeled for my literary debut!
I raced again this week at the University of California, San Diego in La Jolla. The races were pretty similar to last week, in that I didn't execute the race well at all. The times were however quicker than last week which is positive. I won both the 100m (11.56) and the 200m (23.92). I have one more race out here before I go home. I have never raced so much so early before, I am really enjoying it.
My volume of reading quadruples in the summer due to all the travelling I do, so I am on the look out for some good books and I would like peoples recommendations. So if you have read a good book recently, let me know. I don't like horror or anything too "heavy", I prefer an easy read.
Over and out till next time
What an eventful week!! I was suffering with a tight quad all week and was unsure if I would make it to the race on saturday. I did make it, with a lot of very painful physiotherapy sessions which at times included many accupuncture needles. Luckily I am not afraid of needles and I much prefer these to having someone pummel my muscles with their elbows!! Take a look at one particular accupuncture session.
So I made it to Mount SAC relays, a very famous track meet in the USA. It was the 52nd edition of the meeting and I am so pleased that I can tick it off my list of things to do.
I ran the 100m (4th in 11.61) and the 200m (3rd in 24.03) which are not very fast times but my coach said I was really rusty, I havent raced since August last year. I have a few more races planned out here so I am hoping to go a bit quicker in those.
So I guess we will spend the next week working out if anyone will be able to fly home. Quite a few people were meant to fly home tomorrow. All I know is there isnt enough money in the world for me to be that pilot tesing if the ash has cleared!!
Till the next time, over and out
Well, here we are. I am blogging!! Something I thought I would never do but you got to roll with the times.......
I arrived in San Diego for warm weather training two weeks ago and have settled in now. Training has been a bit up and down but should settle down this week.
Keep checking for updates of how I am getting on and what I am getting up to!