OVER new year, I was away with the Manchester team in Tenerife for training and we had an excellent time.
Now, the trials and Paralympics are so close, training is as exciting as always. It can be even more stressful if things don’t go how I want them in a session, or great if everything comes together.
For example, if a sprint set goes well and I nail details I’ve been working on, it’s a great feeling.
Trials are in less than two weeks in London, and I will be going down as part of the Manchester Aquatics team.
I’m looking forward to them very much, and am just putting the final pieces together in training and polishing up. But I’m starting to rest up now, with a lighter volume of training, so I’m fresh to race.
I’ve had a few small competitions recently, all pretty local, just to get some race practice in before the big one.
To be a part of the Paralympics in London will be great. Even just to make a Paras is an achievement, but it is special to be on my home turf.
I know a big percentage of the crowd is going to be people from the UK, so I know the support will be overwhelming.
Training is really the same, though, with a few minor changes. Obviously, I’m taking care of myself and doing a lesser amount of work to rest up for fast swimming.
But the goals remain the same – eye on the prize.
The main rival in the trials for me is the clock, since I am the fastest S9 50m freestyle swimmer by a margin. The qualification time is right on my personal-best time, which I set in Delhi at the Commonwealth games in 2010, which earned me a silver.
There are other competitors who have a shot, but I am confident of being number one for the 50.
In the 100m freestyle, however, there are two or three other Paralympians around or just under my personal-best time, so there will be a bigger fight there.
But my main goal is to qualify for the 50m, as it is my strongest event.
And, hopefully, be able to race the 100m at London as well.