This time around, I thought I would write about my recent weeks in training and give you some insight into my life as an athlete. Many people have the impression that the life of an elite or well known sports person is packed with glamour and perhaps not as rigid or disciplined as the earlier years.
Unfortunately, that is far from the truth.Once one has set a certain standard for themselves and continues to remain in active sport and competition, the training intensifies — if not to improve then definitely to sustain the levels one attained. I remember, when I won the gold at the Beijing Olympics, for the longest time my uppermost desire was to quit.
It would have been the simplest way to take the pressure off myself and, as they say, ‘leave at the top’. Of course, I realised immediately that my love for the sport would never allow me to do so.Well, here goes... My regular day is something like this: Wake up at 6 am, off to a 10 kms run till 6.30. Followed by a flexibility work out in the gym.
Recreation comes in the form of a quick swim in the pool which gives me time to relax a bit before breakfast.From 9 to 11 am is shooting, working on technique and live shooting. I normally manage about 150 to 200 shots. Then it’s time to head back into the gym again to do some more flexibility work outs to get the blood flowing after trying to stand as still as death — the original aspect of this sport that mistakenly inspired me as a chubby little boy!A lunch break from 1 to 2, and back to the range to shoot for another 2 hours...
And yes, back to the gym for some strenghthening exercises... Followed by cooling down with treatment and physio work... It doesn’t end here... This is then followed by 30 minutes of mind work and training — a very,very important aspect of rifle shooting.Dinner is usually by about 7.30 pm and this is by when I hang my rifles up for the day. By then, one is too exhausted to do more than watch some TV... the IPL is my current favourite.
Perhaps watch the news, or my favourite TV shows like 24, Lost, Mad Men, Commander-in-Chief and mostly pass out browsing channels!For all of you who thought I was the cool guy in town ready for a hard night of partying, that’s the long and short of it.I am, however, hoping that those days will eventually arrive. Right now my Saturday night fever bit seems to be in the rather distant future!