Yesterday Emma and I travelled up to the Point 4 Leisure Centre in Hereford for the BTF British Championships.
It was a fairly long drive, made even longer by a lot of diversion signs, so we arrived a little bit late. We weren’t too worried as black belt are normally put on last. However when we entered the hall and saw the black belts on the mat, it was a mad dash into the changing rooms to chuck on our doboks (the white pajamas we wear)! Luckily as the organisers knew we were coming they had very kindly held back the 1st degree black belt patterns category and put the 2nd degrees on first, so we had 5 mins to warm up before we were on!
It wasn’t ideal preparation and my head was still slightly spinning as I stepped onto the mats. Due to numbers they had put the 1st degree males and female in together and I had drawn one of the guys in the first round. I knew I was going to have to perform a powerful pattern while also keeping it technically correct to make it through. It worked and all five judges voted in my favor. 2nd round was the same again, just against a taller guy this time. Then it was straight into the finals. Patterns are hard work so I was luckily given two mins to compose myself and catch my breath. Back onto to the mats and I was feeling more settled now and managed to take the victory with four votes in my favor. So a very hectic but good start to the day.
Before driving up to the competition I had drunk my veg juice and had a bit of my smoothie, but the rest of my breakfast was in my bag as I had planned to have loads of time to eat it when I got there. There was no time to eat it now as we would soon be on for sparring. So I finished off my smoothie as knew that would be enough to keep me going and got my sparring kit on, as wanted to have a proper warm up for this.
The draw had shown our adult female black belt division had been split into two categories, over and under 65kg. As we lined up there were only four of us (not sure if the road works had caused even more problems for other people) so it was decided we would all make one category to give us all more rounds.
First round I had a very game opponent who I think was from Shropshire TKD. She kept coming and made me work for the win.
Then the final was against the same Welsh International team member I faced at the Welsh Open, so knew I was going to have to work hard again! Unlike last time there was no need for an extra round as I got the win!
Thank you to Mr Nicholas for taking the great photos and kindly sharing them with me!
Here is Emma and I with our medals after sparring:
My two gold medals from the day!
Thank you to everyone at Thames Valley TKD and in particular Mr James Dilley and Master Andy Whitely for all their coaching at training. There is still loads I want to work on and will be back in the gym and classes on Mon to make more improvements!
But for today I’m going to have a lazy Sunday and maybe go find some raw vegan chocolate to eat!