Canoe slalom competitor on what Tokyo is really like

10 min read
0
36
Would you be brave enough to try dermaplaning? Image: Body+Soul. Photography: Steven Chee, Styling: Irene Tsolakas


World champion slalom canoe competitor Jess Fox secured a silver medal at London 2012, bronze at Rio 2016 and is now chasing an Olympic gold medal at Tokyo.

It’s been a bit of a different process this time, given the pandemic and delays to the games, but speaking on Body+Soul’s daily podcast Healthy-ish she says it’s still amazing to be there.

“I think it’s been such a long build up to get here that to finally be here and to see all the Tokyo 2020 signage, to see the Japanese volunteers, it’s just super special,” she tells host Felicity Harley on the Healthy-ish episode Olympian Jess Fox on what Tokyo is really like.

Like what you see? Sign up to our bodyandsoul.com.au newsletter for more stories like this.

When it comes to their daily routine in the village, it involves covid saliva tests every morning, and staying within the bubble.

“It’s very strict in terms of what we are allowed to do. We’re currently in a hotel bubble where we’re allowed to leave our rooms to go to training and to go eat in the dining room at designated times. So it’s kind of like a modified quarantine,” she says.

“There’s a great energy, but we’re sort of separated into three training groups (the international paddling communities). So I kind of only mix with the people in my training group at the moment, so there’s the US, Brazil, Netherlands, Spain and Poland in our group.”

While at Rio the teams had opportunities to visit the course, with Toyko, the athletes have had to cram their on-course training into a shorter period of time.

“In Rio we also had more training camps in the lead up to the games. We got to go there three or four times throughout the year. So this is different because it’s very clear we’re here, altogether, in this last two weeks before the Olympics. We’ve got to get as much done as we can and learn as much as we can in that short period of time,” Fox explains.

“We would have done training sessions together maybe, or there would have been a bit more of a fun playful mood in the sessions…whereas now it’s kind of a bit more serious.”

Despite the competition between the athletes, being able to go to the course, and be on the water is a welcome change of scenery for Fox.

“Getting on the water and being able to race is the main thing. So, yeah, really excited,” she says.

Clicking into gear mentally is a bit of a process for Fox, who likes to spend time watching competitors, and analyzing when at the course, and balance that out with mental downtime at the village.

“We’re training twice a day on the venue at the moment. We spend most of the day there…I’m doing a lot of watching, trying to learn as much as I can from my competitors and just to see how they’re doing. Different moves on the course. So we’re really drilling the technique. We’ve done all the physical work. We’re now just getting into the specifics.”

“But I’m keeping occupied with books and Netflix and I’ve also got uni work. So I’ve got things to do to take my mind off training,” she says.

The beloved athlete admits to being a bit of an introvert, which is likely helping her deal with the relative isolation in the village this year.

“I also think that I’m a bit of an introvert, too. It’s my recharge time and I feel like it’s my advantage to – to be semi isolated. I think having a daily self-awareness check is important, just sort of tapping in and then connecting with my teammates and stuff. And if I need to speak to someone on the outside, I can do that as well.”

For a world champion athlete, her process for race day seems relatively simple and low key.

“I would wake up 4-5 hours before my race if it’s in the afternoon, like a 7 or 8am. Start moving the body, maybe a bit of stretching, have a pretty chilly morning and some breakfast, maybe socialise with some team mates, and then we would head to the venue,” she explains.

“We would have the demonstration runs where we would watch the course and analyse it from the bank. I would probably do the first warm up, maybe a bit of video review and maybe say the physio, if I needed it, and then I would really put some headphones on, listen to some music and try and get ready to race.”

“It’s usually two runs on the heats day and then the next day would be the semi and the final. So there’s time between the runs that you’ve got to switch off and just read a book or do something else to take your mind off and get that that focus.”

In terms of her tactic for finally clinching that gold? It’s all about visualization.

“Every race is different. So I do dream of that gold medal,” Fox admits.

“For me, it’s really about trying to visualise that that awesome feeling and that paddling that I want to to show…if I cross that finish line, happy, proud, satisfied, then I can tick that box. But I think visualising that at the finish is what I’m trying to do.”

Follow Jess’ Tokyo journey via Instagram@jessfox94 or read more about her, here.





Source link

Load More Related Articles
Load More In Health
Comments are closed.

Check Also

5 things you may not realise are sabotaging your workout

Training is all about getting the best bang for your buck. Head Trainer at the Australian …