2019 is going to be a turning point for me. It is a year when I am going to prioritise my health and happiness over trying to win medals.
I have kayaked for over a decade, and seriously for the past five years. I became very focused on international selection, but often lost sight of the enjoyment of the sport.
In the past I have also struggled with disordered eating and recently I have found it difficult to eat enough for the intense training required to be an elite athlete.
In 2018 I realised I was going through the motions of training twice a day, but I had lost the desire to win that came so naturally the year before.
In February 2019 I suffered an arm injury, and after struggling to continue training I decided that the best thing for my physical and mental health was to take a break.
I have never voluntarily stopped kayaking before, and initially I had to deal with feelings of guilt, and the concern that I was throwing away something i’ve worked so hard for.
I love sport and think it’s an amazing thing to compete at a high level. I could still try for the European Championships next year, but right now I’m allowing myself a break.
Without training the days suddenly have so much more room. I feel less restricted. I’m so excited to try different things, to train the way I want, to spend time learning new skills.
My priority is now a sustainable healthy lifestyle. I’m interested to see how less training and a greater focus on listening to my body will affect me both physically and mentally.
I want to share this process and what i’ve learnt as a young amateur athlete dedicated to her sport.
I just want to be the healthiest, happiest version of myself possible, and i’d be over the moon if this blog could help even one person along the same journey.