Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying if all Team GB athletes just walk around in a Union Flag we will win everything. I'm not stupid. But if they feel right, proud and confident, they will walk taller and others will notice.
Becoming mindful and conscious about how I breathe, for instance, and the use of silence in my routine opens up all sorts of thought and emotional pathways and provides real insight into how I function in the everyday world and how I could improve it.
I have always maintained for some of our swimmers being the best in Britain is the be all and end all - but this does not apply anymore. This year, this is changing... After the Commonwealth Games and now the Europeans, we have several events where we have five people in the top 20 in the world. Now that's real depth.
By the time Rio comes around our squad will be peaking and close to its very best. In my 23 years of being on the UK swimming team, I have never seen such strength and depth in the squad, so these are very exciting times. This all demonstrates that for the last couple of years, British Swimming has been doing its ground work and is clearly getting something right.
So we are now into the World Cup finals..... I won't say anything about the quarter-finals, and even less about the semi-finals! There is nothing of interest that I can add to the staggering 35.7 million tweets offered up about the Brazil match!
We are at the half way point of the Summer of Sport and after so much promise, the first half has been exciting but with some very poor results... We are now entering the second week of Wimbledon and as always the quality of the tennis in the first week hasn't disappointed... However, for me the highlight of this second half will be the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow later in the month.
My plea is that we develop a major intervention with the next generation of young people who are growing up on a diet of misinformation about food, exercise and looking after their health. We really cannot let this level of bad education continue otherwise we are storing up huge problems as a society and for those individual young people that we care about.
Every year I have to find something new to take part in, that challenges and pushes me outside of my comfort zone and has the effect of terrifying me witless. This year was no different. Thanks to persuasive talents of one Shirley Pinder from BT, I agreed to abseil down the GPO Tower along with Martin Bayfield, Helen Skelton and a few others and a platoon of Royal Marines headed up by the Big Boss, Ed Davis. I know... I'm not sure how that happened either. (Note to self; block all future calls from Abseiling Shirley, as she is affectionately known in our house)...
Losing weight and toning up is going to take commitment and not just wishful thinking. Have you got it in you?... You might not like the numbers the bathroom scales are greeting you with now, but by the time you've lost those extra pounds you will be pleased to know exactly what you have achieved.
So that was it... 2013, gone and here we are moving swiftly into 2014 - nearly mid-Jan. Now looking up from the Chrismas/New Year holiday, I can see a dazzling year of sport ahead. The Winter Olympics in Sochi, the World Cup in Rio and the Commonwealth Games in the summer... What a year ahead... As a massive football fan who loves watching great football all year round, this is going to be a great summer. For me, I think with all those world class teams that will be there, unexpected things can happen as it often does in knockout competitions. Think of the FA Cup and all the upsets that can produce.
Performing at an elite level of sport requires a tough mental and emotional discipline and that is not a given thing, it has to be learned. Its just as big a part of your training as the hours in the pool, the gym or the track. How you approach the mental and emotional side of sport will teach you more about yourself than any formal education, and probably be the biggest lesson you will learn... at elite level, you have to learn how to lose and your emotional response to losing is what toughens you up and teaches you who you are.
When we see the ugly and offensive spectacle of Yaya Toure being targeted for racial abuse in the recent match in Russia, it goes to show that some parts of the world have yet to even get to the starting blocks.
For those of you who do not follow boxing regularly and haven't heard of Anthony Joshua, I guarantee that in the very near future everyone in the UK will know who this man is. He follows in the footsteps of the great British boxers that we seem to produce every 20 years or so.
So September has arrived, the kids are back at school, (the roads are busy in the mornings again!) and the football season is under way with a vengeance. It's hard to say goodbye to the summer but this year a bit easier because we had a real summer...
I don't want to claim that community sports aren't facing real difficulties with regard to funding and keeping local facilities open, but it is worth publicising those events where local people are continuing to get involved in mass participation events, despite all the controversial funding issues. These events are also showing even the most cynical of commentators, that even after the lucrative advertising opportunities that the Olympics created have disappeared, corporate business and sponsors are still putting effort and resources into getting communities and young people interested in sport.
It wasn't a great week for British swimming in terms of medals at the World Championships, only achieving one bronze on the last day from Fran Halsall, so there is much we need to learn and improve on. But it's not all doom and gloom.
There can be a huge shift after an Olympic Games with many leading swimmers retiring. Michael Phelps will be particularly missed at the World Championships because he excelled in so many events... The United States will still dominate but it will be fascinating to see how Germany and especially Australia respond to very poor Olympics performances last summer.
29/07/2013 18:04 BST
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