Today is a great day for Wales and an even better day for its hurdling hero Dai Greene. This afternoon Dai stormed home to victory in the 400m hurdles in the IAAF World Championships in Daegu, with an impressive time of 48:26. In the process he brought home the first gold medal of the meet for Team GB.
Dai Greene became a household name last year with impressive wins in both the European Championships and the Commonwealth Games. Ahead of this week's championships, the 25-year-old revealed the rigorous injury-prevention regime and last minute pre-race strategy that secured him the coveted gold medal.
What has been your typical training week in the build-up to the World Championships?
My typical training week follows the pattern of track, weights, track, weights, hurdles, track and then a rest day. I follow this pattern because after a hard track session it would be too demanding to perform another high quality track workout the next day. My gym sessions involve various power building exercises which are a good compliment to my track sessions, which often result in high lactic acid build-up.
You were quoted as saying you 'feel indestructible' this season, what injury prevention measures do you have in place?
I warm up for at least an hour before beginning my workout and I sometimes see a physio at track side for extra stretching and muscle release work. I will also stretch at the end of a session and will sometimes use an ice bath if I have any areas of real concern.
Once my main workout is complete, I'll have my recovery shake and rest for a while before performing specific strengthening exercises to help develop my weaknesses.The exercises won't be too fatiguing and will change each day in order to work different parts of the body.
How do you preparing mentally for a race?
I mentally prepare by planning my race out a couple of hours beforehand and I check weather conditions and wind direction to see which stride pattern would be best to use. Then I play out the race in my head.
Usain Bolt famously had chicken nuggets for breakfast before his Beijing Olympic success; nutritionally how do you prepare for a race?
Before a race I like to eat a meal with carbs, usually rice or pasta; a small amount of veg and a small portion of protein, usually chicken or turkey, about four hours before I'm due to race. I do this so that I don't feel too full when I'm competing.
I also take sodium citrate and beta alanine as buffering agents to help me cope with the lactic acid build-up. After a race I take L-Glutamine and Impact Whey Isolate from my sponsors Myprotein.com to help my recovery.
You've become not only a household name, but a role model for aspiring athletes. What is your top training tip?
My advice to any aspiring athlete is that although you need to have a good work ethic, more training is not necessarily a good idea and it won't guarantee long term results - even if it makes you feel better at the time.
Many thanks to Myprotein.com for supplying the interview and image.