Bit of a commute to the new job…


It may all sound very back to front, but this summer’s rowing has given me so much more confidence in my abilities, and so much enjoyment for the sport, that instead of going back to Caversham to start training this week, I’ve decided to take a job in the Maldives for six months. I know. But there is rationale behind it….

I was devastated at not going to Rio. The past couple of years haven’t been easy for me (in a very “first world problems” kind of not easy…), from the huge disappointment in Amsterdam, to then becoming overtrained and missing the winter of 2014/15, and the subsequent loss of my seat in the women’s lightweight double. And the thing is, it wasn’t just about losing my seat. It felt like I was losing the only thing that made me feel like I was worth anything. I put more and more into rowing, thinking training harder would help (hence the overtraining), and then focusing more and more on cutting things out of my non-rowing life. Then, when I wasn’t chosen for Rio, I felt like a shell of myself. All the things that made me “me”, I had lost. I had no belief that I could do anything other than row, and it seemed I could no longer do that very well either. I was a joy to be around I’m sure….

This summer, instead of making my mark in Rio, I was going to the other big “R” destination on the tip of everyone’s tongues, Rotterdam. The women’s lightweight quad was my project, and what a project it turned out to be! I loved working with Bri, Ellie, Emily, and coach Ben, of feeling that we all had something to give, and between he five of us, we came away from Non-Olympic Worlds with the Gold medal.

But it’s this new found confidence in the sport, that has encouraged me to take a step back, a sort of “one step back to take two steps forward” approach. I’ve taken a job to develop the rowing program in the Maldives for six months. I know, there are worse places in the world to be! More on the details of the job later, but for now lets just say its something that I feel explores the other skills and interests I have outside of actually rowing myself, that challenges me in new ways, and which provides the mental and physical break I need if I am going to return to full time rowing.


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