New world 1500m champion Jake Wightman says he’s putting his celebrations on hold to make sure he’s at his best for Team Scotland at the Commonwealth Games.
The athlete arrived back in the UK on Thursday with his stunning World Championships gold medal win still fresh in the memory and he admitted his success still hasn’t quite sunk in.
But though Wightman would like to take time to enjoy his achievements in Oregon, he has quickly turned his attention to his next challenge and the Games in Birmingham that start next week. As one of Scotland’s best medal hopes, the runner now goes into competition with expectation surrounding him.
Wightman told STV that his final preparations will be more about maintaining the levels that brought him his World Championships win.
“A lot of it is just resting up because there’s not too much I can add from the shape I’m in,” he said. “So it’s just maintaining that and freshening my legs and getting over this jet lag to start with.
“It’s crazy. The time frame between coming back from Worlds and then going into the Commonwealths.
“I will never have this again and there never has been such a short window. A lot of it will be [staying indoors] just because Covid’s obviously got a lot worse since we’ve been away and the chances of getting it now and the implications of it on aren’t really worth the risk of going out and about as much as I’d probably like to.
“The toughest thing is I’d love to be celebrating right now and not have to worry about the consequence of it but I’ve got to get ready to to race again”
The demands for Wightman won’t just be physical and he admits it will be different going into competition as world champion. He says he’ll prepare himself fully to be ready to show his best in Birmingham.
He added: “Yeah, I think that’s going to be the toughest thing for me is that such a big moment for me to win that and just to mentally come back again and get ready to race, knowing that Commonwealth gold is important. It’ll be tough to kind of get myself back up, which is why I need to let myself chill out for a few days to get ready for the tough rounds again and get back into that championship environment.”
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