Part 2 of the retelling of a recent Primary School assembly…
10 months after I started training with Charley and 20 years after I had to turn down my first opportunity to race in a County Championships, I won the Northamptonshire Championships over 800m and 1500m.
This year, I won the 400m and the 1500m.
I’ve also won medals at the National Indoor Championships and have represented Great Britain at 800m at a World Championships and a European Championships.
One of the things that I’ve enjoyed the most so far in my athletics is being selected to take part in Kelly Holme’s last race before she retired. It was only 1 year after I’d started racing competitively and I would never have imagined that I’d be lining up in a race with the great Double Olympic Champion
Being able to represent England and Great Britain in athletics has given me the opportunity to travel to places like Switzerland, Germany, Hungary, Russia, Portugal and South Africa. I’ve had the chance to meet and form friendships with some great people in the sport and we encourage and support each other to keep being our best even though when we are racing each other we each want to win and beat whoever our competitors are.
I’ve learned lots of lessons from my experiences in sport including how you can use the same ‘mental pushing’ that we use as athletes, to mentally push in any other area of life.
Who has a hobby that they do at the moment? And how do you think you could mentally push yourself to get even better than you already are?
We had examples of swimming, dancing and running…
One of the other BIG lessons that I have learned from athletics is to treat every disappointment as an opportunity to get better. I learned this lesson after quite a serious accident that I had while I was running in a race in the European Championships. Someone was running too close behind me and got their legs tangled up in mine which made me trip over and fall.
As a result my femur, which is the big bone in your thigh was shattered which is obviously quite a devastating thing to happen to an athlete.
But I thought, wow, this is a great chance, that not many people get to show how you can overcome a really big obstacle, and still get the best out of yourself. What is exciting is that on Sunday, I ran the fastest 1500m that I’ve run for 3 years and was less than a second off my Personal Best – I believe that means that I will fulfill my aim of running a PB after my accident and get even closer to fulfilling my potential.
We would have then returned to our peanut butter volunteer and asked…
Now Jake, how are you getting on with that jar of Peanut Butter?
Did you get more out of it than you thought your could?
The lesson that I wanted to share from the jar of peanut butter is this: You can always get more out of most things, including yourself, than you think with just a little bit more effort.
Now some people that will be trying VERY hard to get the most out of themselves in just over a year’s time, are all the people who are going to be competing in the Olympics in London in 2012 and I would just like to leave you with this short video.
It was made before we knew the Olympics was coming to London as part of our bid to bring the games here. We should all now be really proud and excited that our country is going to be hosting the greatest sporting event in the world. Enjoy!