Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Funding News

Who knew that the media could be so powerful?! From one piece in the local paper and a brief radio interview, I’ve had an over-whelming response from people wanting to aid my Paralympic dream. At a time where all you hear about is cut backs, I’m pleasantly surprised at the public’s generosity.

A couple of week’s ago, I did the assembly at Danemill Primary School, before they were set to dress up as their favourite sporting star, all in aid of me. I couldn’t believe how nervous I got, as all of the little people trickled into the main hall. I spoke at a hundred miles per hour, kept losing my train of thought and was distracted by Calvin wandering around my legs, so have no idea if the kids understood anything! It was enjoyable in a strange way though, the funniest question was ‘how do you eat and stuff?’ and the sweetest comment was ‘everyone finds Calvin interesting, but I find you more interesting’!

A big big thank you to Danemill for all of their efforts and I also need to thank:
Chris Alloway at GBF
Jim Bingham
Pat Kitchen
Peter Barratt
The Dudhia family
Cosby TOC H
Klick Fitness

I honestly appreciate all of the support and can promise that the funds will help incredibly towards my various costs. Unbelievably, I actually have a couple of other funding opportunities lined up to.

Thanks again!

Monday, 28 November 2011

F1 2011 Review

The 2011 F1 season came to a close yesterday in Brazil and as usual it was a fascinating and nail biting year. It was quite a surprise that the unlikely World Champion of 2010, Sebastian Vettel totally dominated the sport from start to finish. He was crowned the 2011 World Champion with four races to spare and just seemed invincible, much to the frustration of the other drivers. Nevertheless, he is a worthy winner; I just wish he drove for Ferrari and not Red Bull!

My team, Ferrari had a mixed year, finishing third in the championship overall. I was absolutely gutted that I wasn’t at the Silverstone grand prix this year to witness Fernando Alonso winning the race, that would have been really special. People say Alonso outperformed the car this year, but I can’t help think that Massa underperformed this year, as he never made the podium. This was partly due to some bad luck, as a certain British driver, Lewis Hamilton came together with Filipe no less than five times in the season. Each and every time being Hamilton’s fault of course, I have never been able to warm to that reckless driver!

Out of the British boys, Jensen Button, Lewis Hamilton and rookie Paul Di Resta, I feel that Button was the best. He finished second in the championship; often charging through the pack in races and making his tyres last longer than they should. It’s taken Button an awful long time to become one of the top drivers and demonstrates that persistency is key to success. Di Resta had quite a strong opening season, scoring twenty seven points in total and it will be interesting to watch what he can do in the future.

A driver that has been committed to motor racing for no less than nineteen years and was once a Ferrari man is Brazilian Rubens Barrichello. In recent times he’s been driving for Williams, but his home grand prix may have been his last, as he doesn’t have a seat for next year. Whilst I agree to an extent that it’s great to watch new talent develop, I think someone who is so passionate and dedicated to F1, as much as Barrichello should at least get one more year in the sport to make it a round figure of twenty years. It’s a little unsettling to hear that some drivers buy their way into teams, providing essential funding for them, yet they are not necessarily the most talented driver. What can I say though; money makes the world go round.

I’m very excited for 2012 and what the F1 season will bring. Surely Vettel’s reign can’t continue or will he become the youngest triple World Champion? I’m very much hoping that Alonso will be the next triple World Champion and here’s hoping Massa can rediscover his winning ways.

That’s what I’m talking about! (Vettel, 2011)

Wednesday, 23 November 2011


I can’t say the last two years with Calvin have flown by, as I honestly feel like I’ve had him forever. It’s difficult to remember life without him. What on earth did my mornings used to be like? I have no idea! I don’t and can’t lie that Calvin is the world’s best Guide Dog, as he isn’t. I often wonder whether this is my fault, if I’m too soft with him, but I’m not. I find I’m constantly doing everything in my power to make him a better dog.

One of Calvin’s biggest problems has been his continuous desire to scavenge. This is something I just can’t correct. He wears a halty, which makes it slightly easier to correct him and pull him away from things, but he was immune to the spray collar and because I can’t see, he’s already picked up something before I know it. I have never given Calvin food off of my plate at home and don’t allow others to either and I always prevent him from clearing up crumbs in the kitchen. However, this doesn’t stop him when out and about, yet I get the feeling from Guide Dogs that somehow I am contributing to it. One of my friend’s Guide Dog’s gets very sick every time she eats something she shouldn’t, but because Calvin can stomach so much crap, the problem hasn’t been addressed more seriously in my opinion.

I sometimes tell myself that I don’t work or challenge Calvin enough and this is why he isn’t brilliant. I think it is important to teach your dog new routes, although I understand this isn’t always practical or easy. However, since I’ve had my sat nav and because I’ve lived in my local area all of my life, I can work out slightly different routes to take to go where I’m going or get home again. I hope this is more stimulating for Calvin. With regards to working him more, I don’t think Calvin is a city boy. He’s a fearless dog and has no trouble coping in crowds, but the amount of focus he needs wipes him out. When we go away with friends, I can tell that he is drained from the high work load.

Calvin often doesn’t get much credit from myself or others that meet him. People regularly tell me that he shouldn’t be a Guide Dog, which I laugh off and in fact find quite offensive. Ok so he’s a handful and I want to murder him much of the time when out, but at the end of the day, we get to places, he generally doesn’t walk me into things and he’s extremely good natured. Calvin has a very demanding job guiding someone who has no useful vision whatsoever. Most of my friends with Guide Dogs have not much, but at least some useful vision and I can always tell what a benefit that is. Just to see roughly where a doorway is or a set of steps are assists the dog, as you can cue them in more accurately and have an idea if they are going off course. I rely on Calvin 110%, especially in unfamiliar places. Calvin is a super intelligent dog like most Labradors and retrievers, it’s just a shame that he uses his cleverness for evil and not good!

I love Calvin to pieces and wouldn’t change him for the world! If he was a perfect Guide Dog, he wouldn’t be my Calvin, the one with the massive personality!

That’s it for Calvin week, thanks for reading and commenting and i’ll be back to boring you with my Paralympic dream soon.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Guide Dog Myths

In the two years I’ve had Calvin, I’ve been told all sorts of things that he can apparently do and general assumptions about Guide Dogs. So, I think it’s time to clear up at least ten Guide Dog myths.

1. A Guide Dog helps their owner in the house. Truth, only if the Guide Dog has been trained to be a dual purpose dog, they are in fact a normal dog in the house. In Calvin’s case this is chewing bones, destroying soft toys and nudging everyone to play with him.
2. A Guide Dog knows when it safe to cross the road. Truth, a dog doesn’t really have any sense of danger, although they do have some traffic training. A Guide Dog will only go on instruction to cross.
3. A Guide Dog knows where they are going. Truth, a Guide Dog can become familiar with a route, but ultimately the owner is in charge of where they are going.
4. You can tell a Guide Dog to go to Asda or Boots and they will take you. Truth, a Guide Dog doesn’t know Asda from Boots, the owner knows the way.
5. You have to be totally blind to have a Guide Dog. Truth, you just need a visual impairment and prove how a Guide Dog will benefit you.
6. If you are male you get a male Guide Dog and if you are female you get a female Guide Dog. Truth, a Guide Dog is matched based on the speed they walk, personality and other factors.
7. A Guide Dog can avoid overhead obstacles. Truth, they are trained to deal with overheads, but many, such as Calvin can only deal with things at their own head height. I often have tree branches whip my face, but the worst incident has to be a set of fire escape steps that literally knocked me to the floor and my face was bruised for days.
8. A Guide Dog is perfectly behaved. Truth, a Guide Dog is quite well trained, but at the end of the day they are just a dog!
9. The owner name’s their Guide Dog. Truth, a Guide Dog is named at birth and the entire litter will have a letter associated with them, unless they are sponsored. So in theory everyone in Calvin’s litter first name begins with a C.
10. A Guide Dog is yours for life. Truth, most Guide Dogs have a working life of about ten years and after that if the owner needs a new dog, they often have to give their dog up. It has already been agreed with my family that Calvin will remain with my parents once retired.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Two Peas in a Pod

They say dogs are often like their owners. There is no exception for Guide Dogs, Calvin and I are like two peas in a pod. Here are our ten similarities!

1. I have an obsession with brushing my hair; it’s literally the first thing I do when I wake up and the last thing before bed. Calvin loves a good brush too, he’s always super excited when he sees me get the groom brush and is probably the only time he sits still!
2. We both love to run! I’m super jealous of the speed he can generate; he can go from zero to a hundred miles per hour in the blink of an eye!
3. Calvin will eat anything, but is a massive fan of fish. I adore fish too and always feel his scowl when I eat my salmon sandwiches most lunchtimes!
4. Beautiful eyes! Slightly random, but we both get told we have nice eyes! I have no idea what his look like, but pretty sure mine are tinged with redness most days!
5. Potential. He has the potential to be a brilliant Guide Dog. I have the potential to be a great sprinter. Neither of us are at the minute.
6. Play fighting! Calvin and I enjoy a good punch up, he’ll head but and paw me, whilst I trap him against the sofa or pretend to push him backwards!
7. Competitive! Neither of us ever want to be losers. A game of tug can go on forever!
8. The sunshine! I really enjoy Calvin’s company in the summer, as we both like to sunbathe. During the winter, Calvin can be found snuggled up to the radiator.
9. The rain! Something we both hate. Calvin refuses to go out for a busy in the rain and if he’s dragged out, he refuses to go!
10. Early mornings. We never like to waste the day away in bed. A lie in for us is about 8am!

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Beyond the Call of Duty

Dear Guide Dog of the Year

I would like to nominate my three year old, Labrador, cross golden retriever, cross Labrador, Calvin, in the Beyond the Call of Duty category. I am aware that this category is usually reserved for Guide Dogs that take their work more seriously than other dogs, such as saving their owner from falling into a ditch or jumping into a river to save a drowning child, however, I feel that my Calvin takes his work to another level on a daily basis.

When I first applied for a Guide Dog and watched my visually impaired friends with their dogs, I was under the impression that they were extremely clever and well behaved animals. So, after nearly two years of waiting impatiently, I was excited that my life was going to be made a whole lot easier when out and about. Yes, at first I was slightly alarmed by Calvin’s size in comparison to me, as the first time he greeted me, his giant paws latched onto my shoulders! At this point, I had no idea that the Guide Dog I was being matched with was going to be, shall we say, a special case!

I should have known from that very first walk we had together. Calvin insisted on testing my reflexes, as he thought it would be hilarious to chase a squirrel. I was instantly reassured that this was out of character for him and I naively believed it. Turns out, Calvin loves nothing more than to chase things and is adamant that his sudden outbursts aid my ability to react quickly and effectively, which will ensure I’m always out of the blocks first in a race. Among his favourite things to chase are: other dogs, cats, birds, horses, runners, balls, Frisbees, leaves, floating litter and familiar people. Remarkably, there has only been one fatality, which was a poor pigeon, however, there have been countless distraught children after their game of football has been brought to an abrupt end with a burst ball. Calvin would like to take this opportunity to apologise for his actions, he’s always just as surprised as the children when the ball goes pop and naturally offers to replace it.

Many members of the public believe that a Guide Dog knows when it is safe to cross the road. This is a myth. Although Guide Dogs have some traffic training, they have little or no knowledge of safety. Calvin feels because he is unable to judge danger that it is important that I am kept up to date with my awareness. The first major test was when he casually walked across the train track when the barriers were coming down to indicate a train was coming. He has followed this up by crossing roads diagonally, not stopping at curbs and walking straight out, drifting into the road off of a flat curb, going when he feels like it over a road, stops in the middle to pick something up or sticks his head out a little bit too far. I am pleased to report that Calvin has enhanced my safety skills immensely and we’ve never been injured to date. There have been times where people have horned us or shouted out of their car windows though.

My Calvin is a dog of the community. He believes it is his duty to greet every person he sees in the street. This could be a slight pause as we pass by, a quick sniff of their crotch or if they smile at him, they may get a full blown cuddle, as he wraps his paws around their neck. They are often stunned by the latter, I can only assume because they are not used to seeing such a caring, sociable dog. Whilst working, Calvin multi-tasks as the local litter picker. Collecting wrappers, bottles, cans, twigs, horse muck, in fact anything that enters his path. Unfortunately, he usually swallows his findings, before a suitable disposal place has been found. Come bin day, his work never stops. He acts as the dustbin men’s little helper, as he stops by every box that is aptly around head height for Calvin, to check that residents have put the correct items in the appropriate colour coded boxes. Calvin is also a bit of an educator to the children in the community. He found a dead rabbit on the road side at the same time the pupils of the local primary school were heading home. He felt it necessary to give them a lesson in the circle of life, as we paraded the streets, unknown to me until we got home with him carrying the deceased bunny in his mouth.

As you can see Calvin always aims to take his work beyond its boundaries. When out food shopping, he enjoys helping out. He has been seen picking up fresh begets in Asda and recently tried to grab a Kinder Egg for the trolley, but ended up swallowing it whole, foil, chocolate, toy and all! He insists that it is unhealthy to rush, so takes our journeys casually, stopping to sniff lampposts and bushes. He’s an explorative animal, constantly seeking out new routes for us to take and obviously in search of new places to go, as we tend to end up somewhere unexpected. Finally, Calvin is a born leader. When out with others or with a group of Guide Dogs, he has to be at the front of the pack, guiding the way.

Some might think my Calvin is a disobedient nightmare, I think he is a legend! I’ve never met another Guide Dog that goes beyond the call of duty every time their harness is strapped on. Therefore, I hope Calvin can be awarded this prestigious prize and his hard work recognised.

Yours in puppy love

Selina Litt (proud owner of Calvin)

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Top Dog!

My Calvin thinks he’s the world’s number one top dog! Here’s ten new things that he does on a regular basis to affirm his position as the man of the house!

1. He never tries to get on the sofa in the day, but by night when everyone is tucked up in bed he makes himself comfortable on the sofa in the living room. Calvin has been caught snoozing several times when someone comes down for a drink in the night.
2. If I haven’t taken him out for the entire day, Calvin refuses to get in bed, instead he just stands beside it wagging his tail at me, to let me know!
3. If I’m getting ready to go out, Calvin will constantly nudge me with his nose, so I don’t forget him!
4. He’ll dive into bed when it’s time for his last spend and can only be bribed out with treats, as he plays dead.
5. If I’ve got my quilt on the sofa, he becomes really jealous and tries to get it off me with his paws. He can only relax once he gets a quilt to snuggle on!
6. Calvin will plonk himself down in front of you and expect an ear scratch. If you stop before he’s ready, he’ll either turn around and give you a dirty look and insist you continue or push his head back into you!
7. Calvin will start crying within minutes of arriving at the track, as if to say hurry up and find your group so i can go for my walk with your PA!
8. Calvin’s not much of a barker, but he’s getting more vocal these days and growls or barks at randoms in the street from behind the front door, just to let them know he can stick up for himself!
9. Calvin’s not allowed in my parents room, but now he’s brave, he often takes a few steps in and is gradually getting further and further in without being told to get out!
10. Now he’s three, he dares to mount any dog, never mind their age or size!

Friday, 18 November 2011

Poorly Pup

Since having Calvin, I’ve been really lucky with him health wise. Yeah he’s thrown up the odd time in the night, as his stomach of steel has failed him, after he’s scoffed too many twigs, stones or eaten the fluff of his toys that he insists on destroying. However, this year he’s had two eye infections and just last week was struck down with gastroenteritis.

Being blind, I’ve found that I’ve struggled to know when he has been unwell, since there have been no obvious signs. For example, both times he had the eye infections, I hadn’t a clue until my parents told me that his eye looked red and gunky. Then there were the eye drops, not a chance would I have been able to do them myself, it took three of us to pin him down. He wasn’t too bothered about it going in his eye, he just wanted to eat the solution and kept his mouth wide open to try and catch it.

The gastroenteritis was new to me, I was home alone and he threw up four times within two hours. Only I didn’t realise, as I only found one batch. There was no indication that he wasn’t well, we’d been to the shops in the morning and he seemed himself. I took him to the vets once my dad got home and alerted me to the amount of sick, but the vet said he seemed fine and needed no treatment. I had no idea what to do when a dog is ill, so just took it. The next morning I trod in some more sick and was fuming that the vet said he was fine. This was the day I was meeting Jonathan Edwards and in an unfamiliar environment on my own with strangers, so Calvin was vital to me. I crossed my fingers that he would be ok when we were there and he was, but I felt guilty for working him and took him back to the vets straight after. We saw a different vet, he was given an injection, some rehydration powder for his water and some special food for the next few days. He was far from impressed that he had to miss a meal though!

It’s not pleasant knowing your dog is unwell, although Calvin has never seemed too bothered. He did make me giggle last week, he was obviously feeling a bit rough, but was dying to play at the same time, so he’d do a few moments of being hyper Calv and then flop down, realising that he didn’t have the energy. This occurred a few times, the blonde!

Calvin’s bouts of illness this year has reminded me of how valuable he is to my day to day life. It also concerns me that because of my disability I’m not always able to know there is a problem. It brings it home how important family is sometimes, even when you crave total independence. Here’s hoping my furry friend isn’t ill again anytime soon.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Morning Musings

One of my modules as part of my English Language and Literature degree is Creative Writing. The first assignment required us to write a short piece of prose, which could be fiction, autobiographical or biographical. I ended up writing about Calvin and what our mornings are like. The majority is true, except for the ending, as Calvin certainly isn’t up for a snooze after stuffing his face! I needed to wrap the piece up though. I scored a respectable 77% for the assignment, which included more than this and I hope you enjoy it!

Morning Musings

I’m fast asleep dreaming of something sweet and peaceful. Gradually, my head becomes as light as a feather and I drift into reality once more. My eyes are firmly shut, feeling heavy from sleep, but suddenly my ears are filled with the sound of tiny feet charging up the stairs. I half smile and half grumble to myself, pulling my soft quilt over my head. The feet stop momentarily outside my bedroom door and then merrily tap dance in onto my wooden floor. I purposely keep still for dramatic effect and can sense a pair of eyes surveying the scene. I hear a sniff of satisfaction closely followed by a cold wet nose on my skin, as my cheeky Labrador cross Golden Retriever greets me. Letting out a quiet giggle, I stretch for my clock to find out the time. Although my eyes are now wide open they see nothing but blackness.
‘The time is seven twenty four a.m.’ announces the chirpy lady inside my clock, clearly more awake than I am.
‘Oh Calvin, you couldn’t wait six whole minutes?!’ I hear myself croak wearily. His tail begins to beat rhythmically off of my wardrobe in response, as if to say
‘rise and shine!’. Reluctantly, the covers are thrown off, much to Calvin’s delight, as he shuffles on the spot in excitement. Knowing my surroundings like the back of my hand, I gracefully and confidently make my way downstairs not stopping to turn any lights on in the process.

My first glimpse of the time of day occurs when I open the curtains in the living room that reveals the garden to Calvin and daylight to me. However, even though I can only see a sheet of white light that represents a new day, I can envisage exactly what the garden’s appearance is from my childhood memory. Immediately beyond the patio door is hexagonal paving, natural stone mixed with salmon pink slabs. To the left, the side of the shed can be seen, once with a white rectangular window, but more recently it was painted blue, yet I can only imagine the original setting. Directly ahead is the pond surrounded by the lawn, small trees and bushes. The water was always a disgusting looking green, as the little black statue of a man never spouted fresh water. It’s amazing to think that creatures can survive in the murky water that is probably closer to black these days. My garden isn’t an exhilarating illustration to the naked eye, but to me the picture is a masterpiece, embedded in my visual memory, the only vision that I have retained.

I slide the patio door open, stepping out into the morning breeze, unfashionably dressed with my pink paw patterned ‘wellies’ and knee high winter coat over my pyjamas. Shadowing me every step of the way is Calvin, the furry set of eyes that I have acquired. He’s not looking out for me now, far too focused on uncrossing his paws. I pull down on the entrance gate to his spending area that makes a loud clunking noise, disturbing the birds’ morning tune. I find myself fantasising that there are birds of every shape, colour and size singing in harmony; blue tits, red breasted robins, black birds and sunshine yellow canaries.
I command Calvin to
‘busy busy’ but being well trained he’s one step ahead of me and an unpleasant whiff meets my nose causing my nostrils to flare. Ecstatic with his achievement Calvin develops a swagger in his walk mirroring Danny Zuko in Grease. He licks his chops raucously which allows me to hear a ‘sloppy slurp’, as he communicates his hunger.
‘breakfast?’ I squeal in a high pitched tone, more awake due to the freshness of the air upon my face. We race inside, the change in temperature slightly burning my cheeks. Calvin sits poised waiting for the ‘take it’ command before he gorges himself, eating so vigorously just in case the food magically disappears before him. Stomach emptied and filled again, my furry set of eyes grabs a cuddly toy, snuggles up in his bed and begins to snore. He’s fast asleep, dreaming of something sweet and peaceful, whilst I’m fully alert, wondering if he’d find it amusing if I were to repeat his deed and wake him up!

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Calvin Week's Back!

To celebrate a year’s partnership with my Guide Dog Calvin last year I had Calvin week where I posted informative and light hearted posts daily. Today marks two years since we started training together and because I don’t update on him much these days, it seems fitting to have Calvin week once more! I’m running the week from Wednesday to Wednesday this time, just to be different, (tell a lie I forgot on Monday), so check back each day to be amused and educated!

Running Blind

Running Blind is a documentary featuring visually impaired sprinter Libby Clegg. It begins in Gateshead in 2010 at the Disability Athletics Challenge, which I remember well, as I was competing too! It follows her journey to the IPC World Championships in New Zeeland that were held in January this year. I found the programme captured visually impaired running and visual impairment in general really well. It highlights just how important a guide runner is and day to day struggles that you learn just to get on with. I found that I could relate to much of what Libby described, both in the period where I lost my sight and even now as someone with no useful vision.

Libby now trains at Loughborough the same place as me and I often see her at the track. Lincoln Asquith who was her first guide runner appears in the documentary and has recently started to assist with my training. He has another son who is one of my new guide runners. After watching the programme I feel more confident that I have made the right steps to fulfilling my own athletics goals.

I don’t know how long the documentary will stay on BBC Iplayer, but if you get the chance definitely check it out! Just click the following link: Running Blind

You’ve got to fight for every dream!

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Funding Update

I’ve had a whirl wind of a week promoting myself as a Paralympic star of the future in order to get funding. I’ve featured in the paper three times, done a radio interview and had a networking lunch, which included meeting the legend that is Jonathan Edwards.

It all kicked off on Monday when the Leicester Mercury asked if they could do an interview with me there and then. They sent a photographer out that same day and I featured in the paper on Tuesday. You can read the article here: Leicester Mercury Funding Article

On Wednesday I was invited by Inspire Leicestershire to attend a lunch meeting with triple jumper Jonathan Edwards. He was visiting Leicester to see how we are preparing for next year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games. My name was mentioned in the paper the day before and day after the event. Whilst doing my best not to act star struck, I had a nice little conversation with Jonathan and a useless fact for you is that he has a black Labrador. The meeting also sparked some possible funding opportunities, which I hope will be explored in the near future.

On Thursday my interview with BBC Radio Leicester was aired. A big thank you goes to Peter Barratt who has offered me some funds after hearing the programme.

I’ve also had a blast from the past, as an old teacher has contacted me. She has a few ideas to generate some more funding and sparked a thousand happy memories from primary school.

So things are on the move and despite all of these media commitments I’ve still been training hard, as at the end of the day funding will be a massive help, but my dream of competing at the Paralympics won’t become a reality unless I work for it!

Success is never perminant and failure is never final!

Monday, 7 November 2011

Bruno and Katy

Last week was loaded with music concerts, as I saw both Bruno Mars and Katy Perry at the Capital FM Arena Nottingham. Bruno was brilliant, even though his production was quite different from what you tend to see at concerts these days. He didn’t have any dancers, made no costume changes and only sang his songs. However, he did play various instruments, hit notes out of this world and his interaction with the audience was impressive. Maybe if I could see I would have appreciated his winks, smile and pelvic thrusts that sent the women in the crowd absolutely crazy. I’ve been to a fair few concerts, but I think this was the loudest by far!

Katy’s performance was completely the opposite, yet equally as spectacular. I don’t think i’ve known an artist to have so many costume changes, she came out into the crowd in a ball of candy floss and I found her sense of humour compelling. She’s a little odd, but someone who would make a great friend! The video shown during her costume changes was quite amusing and I about lost my voice singing ‘Fireworks’ on bonfire night. The words to that song are really inspiring.

I’ve got a fair few concerts lined up next year including Jason Derulo, JLS, The Wanted, Steps and Westlife’s final ever tour, which is going to be traumatic! However, 2012 is set to be the best year ever!

Baby I’m a firework, I’m gonna show them what I’m worth; make them go oh, oh, oh, as I shoot across the line, line, line!

Thursday, 3 November 2011

300 Days To Go!

300 days to go until the London 2012 Paralympic Games, the time is really ticking now. My preparations have had a drastic shake up, but fingers crossed it’s all for the best in the end.

I now have three guide runners, yes three, as I can’t bear to be in the usual predicament of being left solo for a few weeks. This way, if one or two don’t work out, then I’ll still be ok, still can train and still feel like I’m on track. However, fitting three guide runners in a week has increased my training sessions, but this can only be a good thing long term.

All this extra training and guide runners cost money, so I was relieved to discover that I had been nominated for a Sports Aid Award for the third year running by UK Athletics. Inspire Leicestershire, who are basically in charge of making sure Leicester makes the most of the Olympics and Paralympics have also been searching for funding opportunities for me. Here is the article published on their website and sent to their media partners:

Article on Request for Funding

From this, I was contacted by a local primary school who are going to fundraise for me, which I’m so incredibly grateful and touched by. It will be brilliant to get the kids excited about Paralympic sport, enhance their awareness of disability and hopefully make them feel proud that they have supported a local athlete to a once in a lifetime event.

I’ve been a bit down for a while, but I’m so glad that things are looking up!

The future’s bright, the future’s London 2012!