Training is stepping up a notch as I head into the winter (air pistol) domestic competition season. Assistance from my coach is helping me small step by small step improve my skills. I'm now starting to reap the rewards from the Physio sessions I started in the summer. Continued specific exercises are strengthening my body to increase my balance and therefore stability, to hold the pistol as still as possible.
I'm putting in the hard work and enjoying the benefits of improvement. Now as the winter continues I need to get competition tough. There are no prizes at home, but evidence of your ability that brings confidence.
Aside and supporting my training I have a new part time job with British Shooting, as the South Development Activator. A role where I can inspire and support other individuals/clubs/schools etc in all disciplines of shooting (rifle, pistol & shotgun). Working for the the same sport that I compete in is a great move, which comes with their support and my increased motivation (if that is possible!) to achieve.
The photo is a day I spent with Land Rover Experience, coaching after I had done my own training that day!
August has been a month where my training focus has been physical. Seeking a course of physio assistance, gym work and the great Dartmoor outdoors, with technical training as well. This time for me is similar to football pre-season, when it's ideal to address physical things before your focus turns to mainly technical & psychological aspects. September brings air and sport pistol trials matches for GB selection next year. So it's important to get off on the right foot towards an important 2015 pre Olympic year.
What an experience the Glasgow Commonwealth Games were for me. Obviously I was very disappointed not to be selected back in January, but sometimes that's just the way it goes. Therefore I made the most of the opportunity for the first time to watch my opponents from afar and learn from their mistakes and positives in their preparations and performances at a major championships. Having a backstage job made this very interesting and informative as I look forward and prepare for next season.
My job at Glasgow was in Sports Presentation, liaising with the technical officials that ran the events and the media/broadcast/announcers etc. Ensuring all ran smoothly in the eyes of the spectators at the event and watching on tv. Also to support the tv coverage, I did a lot of the BBC commentary which I know many people heard and hopefully enjoyed. For the spectators on the day I also spoke to the crowd for each event, preparing them for what was going to happen and building the atmosphere.
Having this role behind the scenes was great fun, but there is obviously nothing like actually competing. Glasgow has helped me build my CV content and importantly fuelled my enthusiasm for Rio 2016.
This month has seen my training step up a gear, travelling to Ipswich for an intense training camp. Predominantly training on my own is a challenge to maintain the intensity needed. Therefore these training camps are important to help me gain 1:1 coaching and reinvigorate my training in Devon. It was great to return home and be able to cheer on the Helpful Holidays cricket team, who played Gidleigh Park Hotel. Such a beautiful day, in picturesque Chagford and raising money for a great charity. There's no place like home...