I knew at the age of six that I wanted to be an Olympian. I believe I had lived my whole life following the Olympic ideals, although I had just missed out in 1996 and again in 2000, it was those ideals that made my Olympic dream come true.
I learnt that the most important thing at the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part; at 26 I finally represented Australia at my first Olympics in 2004. I was so proud that I overcame the obstacles, hurdles and setbacks and that I never gave up, always believing in myself.
At the Olympic Games I fulfilled a lifelong dream of winning Olympic Gold and Silver medals, I swam personal best times and was in total disbelief of what I had achieved at the greatest sporting event in the world.
When I was training for the Olympic Games my alarm would go off at 4.15am, the only way to get up that early is to never press snooze, as soon as the music starts turn it off and jump out of bed.
If you’re keen on watching the Olympic Swimming finals live from London you will have to set your alarm for 4.15am!
This will give you enough time to get out of bed leave your warm comfortable mattress behind and you’ll have a chance to make a quick cuppa then settle in for what will be a fantastic 16 days of competition cheering on our Aussie representatives.
In 2012 I’m joining the rest of the nation as a couch potato spectator and I can’t wait to watch the Aussies achieve their hopes and dreams.
Here is a sneak preview of three of the swimming events that I’m really looking forward to watching. So remember, set your alarm clock, and don’t hit snooze or you’ll miss the live action as my fellow Olympians go for gold.
Day 2 - Men’s 4x100m freestyle relay
This will no doubt be one of the most anticipated and most watch events of the London 2012 Olympics. It was the event that lifted the roof off the Sydney 2000 Olympic Aquatic Centre when Australia smashed the USA & played air guitars. The Aussies again have their eyes on gold with a serious sprint squad led by world champion James Magnussen who spearheaded the team to the world title last year ahead of France and the USA. Add the likes of Eamon Sullivan, Matt Targett and James Roberts, I believe that this men’s team can strike Olympic gold again.
Day 4 - 200m individual medley
When I raced Stephanie Rice at her first international event at the Commonwealth Games in 2007 I knew she would go on and achieve great success. She’s one of the best racers in the world and is the defending Olympic champion in this event. Rice looks to be back to her world record breaking form. Also watch out for her fellow Australian teammate Alicia Coutts, it would be great if the Aussie girls could go 1-2.
Day 5 - Men’s 100m freestyle
All eyes will be on Australia’s world champion and the fastest 100m swimmer in the world over the last two years, James Magnussen as he attempts to become the first Australian since 1968 to win the coveted blue rib band event. It would be the icing on the cake for Magnussen to win Olympic gold, fellow Australian James Roberts will also be in the hunt for a medal.