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Beijing Diary by Libby Clegg

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Elizabeth Clegg
Me in action with Lincoln


4 August 2008


The second diary from Libby Clegg, since her Paralympic selection around 6 weeks ago. Libby is a visually impaired sprinter, based in Edinburgh. At the age of 18 she is one of the youngest members of the team heading for Beijing.




Since my first diary, I have been training hard but unfortunately I have suffered from shin splints. My physio diagnosed the problem at the beginning of July and since then I have received regular treatment, sports massage and followed the guidance on icing my leg three times a day.


So, the last month hasn’t gone as well as I hoped, I have been wearing those hideous compression socks to train, but thankfully my shins have improved, so that’s great news. My training has changed, but I have still been running, so I'm making good progress.


It's great to be off school now, but I’ve not seen as much of my friends as I would have liked. But I am going to the Edinburgh festival next week with some friends and my sister so that should be good.


A few weeks ago, I raced in Birmingham at the Aviva National Champs and Olympic Trials. I enjoyed competing there, the atmosphere was really good, it might go some way to preparing me for Beijing when the crowd will be much bigger than I have ever experienced before. My time in the 100m in Birmingham was good, but I know I can improve on my technique.


Last Friday, I met up with my guide runner Lincoln in Birmingham for some training together. We did loads of practice starts, which went really well. We did a 100m, then discussed how it went, followed by a 120m, then 2 x 150m. The starts were great so I was really pleased, it definitely gave me some confidence. It is important for me to catch up with Lincoln, as we don’t see each other as often as I would like. I stayed with my coach Ilona in Leeds to train for the week before, then it was the Paralympics Expo in Birmingham. I enjoyed meeting up with everyone, the Dinner on Saturday night was really good.


I don’t have much other news to report, except my family have been finalising their plans to come out for the Games in Beijing. My Dad has now decided to go, he will fly out with my Mum, two brothers, sister, my friend Ruth and my boyfriend’s Mum. So, I will have some good support in the stadium!


My boyfriend Simon is actually in Afghanistan at the moment, with 2 Para. He has been away for 4 months and hopefully gets back soon after the Paralympics finish, at the end of September. I speak to him usually once a week, when he phones me as his phone calls are really limited. It is really hard when I miss a phone call as I can’t phone him back.


So, with a few weeks to go now, training is going well – my last race was in Liverpool on Saturday. This morning I did an interview on BBC Five Live breakfast, it was planned for 0740, but they brought it forward to 0655, because of all the news around the England Cricket Captain! Anyway, it went quite well.


I travel to Macau with the ParalympicsGB squad on 24 August, but I’ll be in touch before then!


Bye for now