Well I have been in Italy for 2 and a half weeks so far and this morning I farewelled the rest of the team as they headed to Rio. Stuart Tripp (hand cyclist) and I are the only two riders left in Italy with an amazing team around us, Lia – physio, Nick – coach and Dan – mechanic. We are here for another 9 days before we make the trip to Rio. Why have we been left behind, you might ask? Well that is an easy one to answer…we don’t race until the second week.
Once we are in the village there isn’t really a lot of places we can train safely. So to give us the best possible preparation we are staying put in Montichiari! I certainly can’t complain, the Hotel Faro is not just a hotel, they have made us feel welcome like family and would do anything to make our preparation the best possible! Although it was sad to see everyone go, we will see them soon!
Training has been going really well and over the last couple of weeks things have really been coming together. It is amazing when you only have to think about 3 things…training, eating and sleeping! Real life doesn’t get in the way, although I must say I do miss my husband Russ, dog Jack and my own bed!
It is also the last day before the advertising ‘black out’ that I can mention my sponsors and supporters who have helped me to get where I am today. It certainly isn’t just a one person effort to enable an athlete to reach the pinnacle of their sporting career, competing at the highest level, it is a whole team behind that athlete.
So I would publicly like to thank my sponsors: Liv Cycling Australia for being in my corner for the last 4 years and providing me with equipment every year! High 5 Nutrition for the support over the last year in supplying me with hydration and fuel to keep me going. Thanks also to She Science for the undergarment support (no pun intended!) and most recently Westpac for believing in me enough to assist with some money to upgrade my flight to Rio.
Those are just the sponsors, there is also a whole team behind the athlete from family near and far especially my husband Russ, friends (anyone who has ever gone for a ride with me or just were there to believe in the fact that I could do this crazy sport stuff!), my coach Rebecca DiCello, my cycling club St. Kilda Cycling Club, the Victorian Institute of Sport for all their support with every program I have needed to access, medical, nutrition (Kylie), gym (Ben), sports psych (Paulette-RIP :-() and sports science (Nick). Then there are those outside the VIS, Russ my massage therapist at More than Physio , Stella my chiropractor at Clifton Hill Chiropractic Clinic and all my doctors who have helped keep my body running well despite my MS! I can’t forget the MS Australia team in Blackburn, Victoria who have always supported me in whatever I attempt to do!
Thank You, Thank You, Thank You to everyone who has helped me over the last 4 years! I am only 10 days away from being in the 2016 Paralympic Village and rest assured I will be giving it my all when it comes time to race!