I first competed at the Commonwealth Games (albeit the youth version) in 2008.
Fourteen years later, I’ve been selected to represent Team England at my first (real) Commonwealth Games (the Commonwealth Youth Games doesn’t count at the Senior performance level).
If I’m honest, this one has taken longer to achieve than my Olympic dream.
In 2010, I missed out on competing for Team England at the Games in India due to a horrible hamstring tendon tear.
In 2014, I missed out on competing for Team England at a ‘Home’ Games in Glasgow due to ankle/bursar/achilles tendon troubles and surgery.
In 2018, I missed out on competing for Team England in Australia due to my brief retirement after rupturing my achilles tendon, thus failing to represent Team GB on my second attempt of preparation over an injury-ridden four-year Olympic cycle, requiring a third major surgery in 2016. (Wouldn’t you want to pack it in, too?!)
In 2022, I made it! (Just!*)
So, you know the saying, ‘third time’s a charm’? Well, maybe not quite.
I’m glad I was blessed with a fourth shot.
And despite the (hmmm, how can I best phrase this?)…let’s say… unexpected nature of my 2022 season to date…
I’m choosing to celebrate the victory of selection.
I’m choosing to keep on keeping on the hard slog of focused, high intensity training.
I’m choosing to believe for big distances and podium performances.
Because…what’s the point of putting in the work if you don’t back yourself?
How long have you been waiting?
Can you relate to my story? Can you relate to the knock-backs, the desire to quit, but then the even greater desire to get back up and try again?
What’s your 14-year story?
Maybe you’re at your lowest, on your knees wondering at the seeming unfairness of life – the valley.
Maybe you’re at the peak, praising God for the incomparable high of a miraculous victory.
Or maybe you’re still in the midst, slogging through – the climb.
This could be in your relationships, career, health, finances… the list goes on.
Whatever that looks like, where ever you are, be encouraged. Have faith. Keep going.
And practically, if you’re looking for more support on your journey, check out stories of Resilience or get in touch with me directly to enquire about Resilience & Wellness Coaching or for Speaker/Facilitator requests.
If you want prayer, add your prayer requests to my prayer list.
Thanks for reading. Stay blessed.
*That conversation is for another blog post-season. At the moment, I’m choosing to focus on the positives because I have no room for doubt as I prepare to compete in the coming weeks.