I have to admit, getting to this point has been hard work - particularly learning to juggle my training schedule, Olly's training schedule for soccer, Hunter's first term at school and the kids sports - especially as it got closer to Nationals and my training load increased. I was pretty exhausted come the end of the competition but I can tell you that it was worth every ounce of the hard work. I'm so happy Nationals coincided with the start of the school holidays though as I've needed it to recover. And sleep. A lot. ;)
My first event was the Long Jump and I came away with the gold and my first ever national title! I scraped through with a bronze in both 100m, 60m and 200m which was a nice surprise. I think I managed a tiny PB in the 100m too. The weather turned pretty nasty on day 2 - pouring rain and so so cold - far from ideal conditions for my hurdles. I came away with the gold but with a much slower time than I would have liked. Considering the rain was coming in sideways and I could hardly see the hurdles, I am very happy to have finished the race safely. I only broke my three strides before the last hurdle after clipping the 2nd last hurdle. All things considered I have to be happy with that and see the positive - that I have now run a race in those conditions, and I've ran a race in which I had to add strides between a hurdle (which was something I was really worried about), so I don't have to fear either of those things anymore.
The family came to watch me this time around and my parents were incredibly inspired by some of the older athletes getting out and competing in age groups up to 90+. It is hard not to be inspired in such a wonderfully supportive atmosphere where people are getting out, having a go and participating in a sport that they love well into their senior years. It is hugely motivating for anyone that watches.
I am so incredibly thankful to be back at Athletics and to be a part of the fantastic Australian and NSW Masters Athletics competitions. It is great to be able to compete in a sport that you love against people the same age and I've said it plenty of times before, but it's so great to be surrounded by so many friendly supportive people.
I'm enjoying a few weeks off training now then off-season training begins and I'm looking forward to next season already :)