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Untitled Document

Jade Lally


Hi Jade, thanks for taking the time to speak to us!

My first memories of athletics were in my middle school and high school, doing and winning a lot of high jump. My teacher Mr. Pritchard at my high school, asked me to take part in a ‘Borough’ schools competition.

I did high jump because I was the tallest but unfortunately, I didn’t do too well. He had sparked an interest in the sport though and joined Hercules Wimbledon AC with my best friend Maureen. I started competing the following year when I was 14yrs old.

I first got into Discus throwing when Maureen described that she threw a small ‘plate’ thing at school. We found them in the store cupboard, had a go and I beat everyone in the group.

So, I stuck to it. I did all throwing events with Maureen, with the occasional long jump, triple jump and high jump and also 4x100m relay. I left Hercules to join Sutton AC in a bid for higher competition. After a few years, I left there and joined my current club, Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers.

I wouldn’t say I was a particularly good Junior. I met my current coach in 2003 when I was spotted at a league competition. I made my first AAA’s in 2003 and came 8th. My first English Schools were in 2004 in Gateshead where I finished 6th.

2005 was my final year for English Schools, here I finished 7th. My first GB vest came the following year in 2006 at the Loughborough International.

When I got better than everyone else in the UK and became competitive at International level!

I want an Olympic Gold, can’t stop until I get one (or at least have a good attempt)!

I didn't win my first international in 2006! But it was my first GB vest. It came as a surprise. And I couldn't believe I had actually earned the right to wear one! Unfortunately, it rained and I did really bad in that competition!

Terrible year for me in many ways. I thought I was going to the Olympics and was bitterly disappointed when I learned that despite being the only qualified athlete for Discus, I wasn't selected.

It's heart-breaking when you set your goal and come so close but you're let down at the final hurdle. It was hard to sit in the stadium with my dad and watch the qualifying rounds with no British competitor in it.

Jade Lally

I knew getting a medal was realistic for me, of course it is about what you can do on the day! Easier said than done. But I did get a season’s best and threw over 60m to get my Bronze. I felt like that put me back on the map again.

The last time I had won an international medal was in 2009 so it was nice to get back on the podium.

Surreal! I had worked for 7 years solid at that point to make the Olympic Games. This one was not a surprise, as I took it out of the selectors hands and gained automatic selection.

My aims and expectations changed when I broke the English Record and threw well beyond the Olympic standard early in the year. It went from just making the team to getting into the final. Unfortunately, it rained during my qualifying and I did not perform well enough to get into the final.

I have been invited to every Diamond League this season which is the highest level of athletics possible (outside a Championships).

Performing against these girls every week gave me a really good insight as to what to expect in the qualifying competition. Nothing came as a surprise- apart from the weather!

Never give up. It gets hard, it gets really, really tough at times. To the point where you're not sure if it's worth it or if you can physically and mentally give anymore. But you should never give up.

I have had many setbacks, most of which have been outside my control. But if you control the controllables and stick to the plan, you'll get there. Execute what you have been trained to do!

I used to hate benching, but it is by far my most favourite thing to do! I used to hate it because I was so bad at it. But I stuck with it and made my weak point one of my stronger points.

I also really enjoy the Olympic lifts- Clean (I rarely do both clean and jerk) and the Snatch. It’s a very athletic, fast lift. So much to learn technically from it. You get better over time and there is a lot of satisfaction from lifting above bodyweight above head!

Jade Lally

Anything cardio based. I HATE anything cardio. I don't even like the word.

I don't often listen to music whilst training, mostly because headphones are hassle. But if I do have control over the music - its usually old school rap, hip-hop, anything that is "Kisstory" and occasionally, some rock. Not often though! Main thing is, whatever it is, its loud!

It used to vary but over the last few years it has been more consistent. The reason for this is because we (my coach and I) feel that I lose too much strength/ power/ sharpness if we drop too much.

So, we do most lifts all through the year, but with more emphasis on certain things at certain points. Olympic lifts will be done all year round, as will bench, back work, flyes, a variation of a deadlift e.g. trap bar deadlift, rack pulls.

During the competition season, I will do more jumping, and lighten the loads to move it faster. Everything should then become more explosive.

Meat, lots of! Sweet potatoes, veg (kale, corn on the cob, stir fry stuff, salad bits). I always have some form of 'little' orange (satsuma etc.), bananas, mango. Lots of raw nuts, some dried berries, coconut oil, olive oil, garlic and chili infused oil, flapjacks, Green and Blacks chocolate.

Actually, you would find a lot of chocolate in my house. I like to have the option of chocolate, so it’s always in stock! But I don't eat it very often- there's still an Easter egg in there! Greek yoghurt, I eat a lot of that.

Porridge, eggs, bread, bagels, rice, noodles, pasta, Nutella, peanut butter. Protein powder, protein bars. Sometimes you will find cakes, like if you looked right now, you would see cherry bakewells! That's probably my main stuff.

99% of my meat is Muscle food meat. It's important for me to have quality products and trust where they have come from and what's in them. I also believe it is important to eat local when you can and eat product from the UK.

My favourite find is definitely the white chocolate peanut butter I have stumbled across! That could be my most enjoyable time of the day, eating that stuff!

Jade Lally

Generally, I eat what I want, when I want. I am lucky in that my sport, we don't have weight categories or have to be super lean. So, I can generally eat anything as long as my bodyweight is reasonable and my body composition is right.

To throw a Discus a long way, there is no set way. The current top 10 in the world all look quite different- and I am part of that line up.

Fast food restaurants. The convenience of them made it hard initially, but I learnt if you prepare, you are less likely to be tempted by them. So, that is now what I do.

Jonathan Edwards was a huge one when I was young. World record holder in the triple jump. Phil Taylor is still a great sporting role model. His dominance over the years in darts has been incredible. 16-time World Champ and still going!

Lastly Dani Samuels is someone I train with when I'm in Australia. She was the youngest person to ever win a World Championship in Discus at the age of 21 in 2009. She has already achieved so much and is a very honest athlete. That's so important in top level sport.

I made a similar comment earlier, but whatever you want in life, you have to go for it. It's not easy, it will be hard, it will test you, but it will be worth it.

Stay focused, lose the distractions and go get it! I love the quote from 'Rocky'- "It ain't about how hard you hit, it's about how you get hit and keep moving forward". As cheesy as that is, it is 100% true!