Mother of two Sophia Warner is aiming to win gold at the London Paralympics when she takes to the track for her 100m and 200m events.
The 37-year-old from Dorking, who suffers from cerebral palsy, is currently the top ranked athlete in Europe and is ranked number two in the world.
She is considered one of ParalympicsGB’s strongest medal hopes when she competes in the T35 100m and 200m, events she has medalled at on a world stage.
Warner had been preparing for London 2012 by reading books on mental toughness and has surrounded herself with positive people.
She said; “I am now feeling excited and hope so much that I can perform at least one personal best under the pressure of the Games.
“If I can do that – I have conquered everything and if it gives me a medal – even better.”
Warner trains 30 hours a week, time she splits between Surrey and the Lee Valley Athletics Centre in north London, which is the centre of excellence for British athletes.
Her training involves 15 hours in the gym, six hours on the track and nine hours physiotherapy, so how does she fit it in as well as the demands that come with looking after two young children?
“The same as any working mum really,” she says, “but being an athlete is more like shift work due to having two or three sessions a day.
“I try and get all the sessions done when the children are at school and sometimes do one of the later ones when they are in bed as I have a home gym.”
This dedication to training was recognised in 2010 when she was awarded the ‘Disabled Sports Personality of the Year’ at the Sussex Sports Awards.
Although the Paralympic Games have not started yet, Sophia is already thinking about how she will celebrate and relax after the closing ceremony on September 9.
“I have a big party planned for after the Games and it’s to celebrate what all my friends and family have gone through with me.
“We will certainly celebrate the end of such an incredible achievement and I cannot wait to actually unwind and spend some time with my family!”
The Women’s Sports Magazine
Sophia Warner is dedicating her training miles to the Boots Miles for Macmillan campaign, to find out more or to get involved visit www.macmillan.org.uk/walking