Team GB boxer Lewis Richardson had made it through his first ever Olympic qualifier bout on March 14, only for the career-defining event to be postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Usually, Lewis lives in Sheffield where he also trains but he has moved back home to spend lockdown with his mum and brother in their family home in Colchester.
He had hoped to be training intensely ahead of competing at the Olympics this summer but even though everything has changed, he still needs to continue to keep up a training regime at home. He’s also working as a virtual coach for home-workout app Eastnine,
I wake just after 7. No alarm has been set throughout this quarantine, but my body clock continues to stay the same.
The sun shining through on this beautiful Monday morning, it’s going to be a good day! ‘Alexa, play BBC Radio 1’, I wake up slowly, scrolling through social media seeing what has changed in the world overnight… not a lot!
I am up, dressed and ready to do a 5km challenge run. A friend has nominated me on Instagram, the time to beat is 18:36. I run hard, I feel good and I get a time of 17:51, not even I was expecting to run that fast, a good start to the week.
I walk back to my flat, stretch my legs on my balcony trying to cool down whilst I wait for my bath to fill up – usually I’d opt for a shower but we only have a bath at home so I’m getting used to a daily bath instead. I jump in, have a quick wash and suddenly all I can think about is food.
No excuses. We are in lockdown but we have time to prepare good food and eat good food. I prepare my favourite – two boiled eggs, one piece of bacon and one piece of toast alongside some avocado and salad.
We’re not finished yet, I finish my breakfast with a bowl of cereal and fruit. I love breakfast, the best meal of the day!
I get a call from my lead coach of the GB Boxing programme. With the Olympic qualifiers cut short back in March due to coronavirus, I must stay focused, disciplined and sensible. Today’s phone call from my coach is video analysis on my next opponent when the qualifiers resume.
My training sessions during lockdown have included varied running sessions, ranging from 100m sprints to 8km runs, alongside pads with my brother and circuits set from both GB and via the Eastnine app. Training from home is not ideal, but I definitely feel I am making the most of the situation and doing the best I can with what I have.
Prep for Eastnine Skipping Tutorial for their social media outlets. I know how to skip but can I teach it? There’s only one way to find out! I give key fundamentals and break it down into stages, I hope when I record this later it goes to plan!
Being an Eastnine Coach has been a great experience for me – learning on the job, enjoying the moment and meeting some very motivating and successful people along the way. Adding my unique craft of boxing to some coaching sessions is great and very enjoyable to put across.
Once very shy behind a microphone, this has increased my confidence which will help me in the future with interviews in my boxing career. Helping others train is also very rewarding – it’s a great feeling to know I’m leaving a positive impact on peoples’ lives.
Food time again.. just a jam crumpet as a little snack before my second session of the day. I get changed, get my hand wraps on and get the boxing gloves out.
Todays boxing session – 6x3min rounds of pads followed by an abs circuit from the Eastnine App. Very lucky to have my brother with me in this period training alongside each other, we haven’t been able to do this in the past two years due to me training full time up in Sheffield with Team GB. Key ‘work-ons’ from my coach:
- Work On the inside – being a tall rangy fighter, I need to practice working in closer range throwing bent arm shots (hooks & upper-cuts) and more body shots
- Be busier – throw more punches in the round, make the opponent worry about what’s coming at him
- 1st and 3rd – If I’m throwing in a combination of moves, I need to anticipate my opponent’s counterattack and have a response to this
Bath and Lunch, nothing fancy but clean and healthy, nevertheless. Salmon, sweet potatoes and lots of veg. Finish lunch off with a sweet treat of a yogurt and more fruit.
Food is a very important part of my every day – fuelling the body is like fuelling your car, put good foods in and you’ll deliver good fitness and training sessions. I do the family shop once a week, lots of fresh meats and veg, then also frozen things to see us through the back end of the week. I go shopping to make sure I can get everything I need and then can get the family’s also. I do a lot of our cooking and we all contribute like a team so it’s a really nice family routine that we’ve gotten into.
The sun is still shining bright on the balcony and I think it’s the perfect time to enjoy some of that sun. Check my phone, catch up on social media and relax for an hour – it feels like I’m on holiday.
Eastnine Skipping Tutorial recording time. Me and my brother have a laugh whilst doing it, I get a little camera shy but after take 100 we have completed the recording – I hope everyone likes it.
Mum has started a chilli con carne. I finish cooking it and then we sit down for dinner altogether – it’s lovely. I finish dinner first like usual and go for seconds whilst Mum is still eating her dinner. We sit after dinner and laugh and talk about memories.
Back on the balcony, bit colder now but it’s a lovely sunset. I plan my day tomorrow. Small goals, small wins are key in this lockdown period. We must have something to keep us focused and motivated. I don’t need any help with that – it’s the Olympic Dream for me. But we must have small goals to get us to our final destination.
Yoga with my brother (poor attempt from us both). We have said 20mins of stretching a night to improve our poor flexibility. We’ve got a long way to go yet.
My brother, mum and I sit down for the evening with a slice of banana bread we made last night. We watch some TV together, have a laugh and relax.
I am tired! My mum and brother remain in the front room whilst I brush my teeth and head to my room. I go to bed tonight feeling content. I have trained well, eaten well, recorded for Eastnine and spent more quality time with my family today.
I’m used to going to bed early due to training. Even in lockdown, I’m still in training so I still need a good sleep before the morning so I can perform optimally. My family understand my needs and are very supportive so when I go to bed they are nice and quiet for me. We all have a good and respectful relationship which I’m very thankful for.
Tough times bring opportunity. I may never get this much time at home again to spend with my nearest and dearest. My pace of life will never be slowed down like this again, unless I give it to myself which I won’t until I reach the top. My head is clear, my family are safe and healthy, I am grateful and ready to do it all again tomorrow.