Huffpost UK Sport
The Blog

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Jeanette Kwakye Headshot

Make London Sparkle for the Olympics

Posted: Updated:

I'm thrilled the Olympics are happening in East London, it will literally be like running in my own backyard. When my family came over from Ghana in the '60s we settled in the East End and it's always been my home; plus I can nip home for a cup of tea with my Mum - something I couldn't do at the Beijing Olympic Games!

I am training really hard at the moment to be in the best shape that I can be. These next few months are crucial, and I've got to be 100% focused.

I've been with my coach Michael Afilaka for ten years now, and he knows just how to get the best out of me. We train from 8.30am to 2.30pm every day down at Lee Valley Athletics Centre, with a gym session in the afternoon, so I don't have time to feel tired or sleepy, its go, go, go!

I am flying off to Orlando for a few weeks in April to do some warm weather training; and when I'm out there I am hoping to compete in a couple of low-key out door races to test my performance before final Olympic selections.

In June I'm going to be back in London taking part in a Clean Up London Sprint, as part of my role as the Ariel ambassador for the P&G Capital Clean Up campaign.

As I sprint cross London I will be trying to get Londoners involved in helping us make London look its very best for when the world descends on us in August. I think it's really important that London looks stainless, as I think the press will be looking for opportunities to give negative views about the Olympic Games, so I want to make sure that London's looking sparkling and everyone who visits has a great time. When I stand at the opening ceremony in my British kit, singing the national anthem I want to world to feel the pride that we all feel in London.

I am getting my family involved in cleaning up too! There is no escape! My mum, dad, sisters and brothers are my biggest support. They have always been there 100% emotionally and physically, from washing my kit to driving me up and down the country to compete in races.

I'm very lucky and I hope I can do them proud! My local community in east London are also huge supporters, if I'm in a local café someone will shout over "hey, running girl, you keep going, you make us proud this summer". Occasionally I will get some advice from one of the old East End boys, telling me to work on my technique! I've also got over 4000 Twitter fans who are behind me every step of the way, every time I compete I get so much support. I love to chat with my fans on Twitter, they really cheer me up if it's tough going, or I'm tired, although Twitter can take over my life a bit so I've given up tweeting for lent, but I'll be back!

As part of the P&G Capital Clean Up Jeanette Kwakye is leading Team Ariel on its quest to make London stain free in time for the London 2012 Olympic Games. Find out how you can get involved by visiting www.pgcapitalcleanup.com

Around the Web

London 2012 - Tickets, Sports, Schedule, Venues | London2012.com

Olympics 2012: athletics | Sport | The Guardian

London Olympic Games 2012