Q&A: Welsh winter mornings
4th January 2012
Paralympic S8 400m Freestyle champion Sam Hynd fills us in on the difficulties of winter training, how last season has inspired him and his targets for 2012.
Do you enjoy training during the winter?
Yeah, I enjoy every time of year when I’m swimming.
This a hard time obviously. Winter is notorious – it’s the coldest, the darkest and typically the hardest to maintain your training because of the early mornings.
So in that respect it is quite tough but it’s just something you’ve got to get on with and make the most of.
Were you pleased with last season's efforts?
Absolutely, last season was a good basis for moving forward.
I had a fantastic European Championships [Sam won S8 400m Freestyle gold and SM8 200m Individual Medley bronze] and all I want to do now is move on my times from the long course meets and look forward to the Trials in March.
You're based in a really strong group with the likes of Ellie Simmonds and Steph Millward at Swansea – do you feel the benefits of that?
Yeah, definitely. The camaraderie between the group is world class.
We all want the same thing – to do well at the highest level.
And not only that, the support we get in the way of sports science, physiotherapy, strength and conditioning is the best you can get.
How much dryland training do you include in your training?
I do two full gym sessions a week. That is about an hour to 90 minutes each. Depending on where we are in our cycle it could be endurance, strength, power or something else.
I do love the gym sessions and we'll have a laugh as well. If someone’s struggling a bit, we’ll give them a bit of banter to bring them on.
Is it difficult training and living so far from where you were brought up in Nottinghamshire?
Yeah, it's miles from where I’m from but I enjoy it. It's a lovely part of the world – it’s nice to be able to see different places.
That’s one of the great things about swimming as well, you get to travel and do get to see a lot of great places abroad and in the UK.
With the Trials closing in fast, what targets have you set yourself?
We’ve got a goal in our heads about where we want to be, particularly in the 400 which is my strongest event.
We definitely want to qualify in that but anything else that happens is just a bonus and I’ll be happy with whatever comes along.
But we’re definitely 100 per cent targeting that 400m.