"Robot Holly" taking a more relaxed approach to life at the moment: Pole vaulter Bradshaw taking an emotional break

Olympic bronze medalist Holly Bradshaw has spoken about how important it has been to take an “emotional break” following Tokyo 2020 after a 10-year cycle of being robot Holly.

By Craig Salmon
Thursday, 11th November 2021, 11:38 am

The Euxton athlete made history in the Japanese capital when she became the first competitor from Great Britain to win a pole vault medal at an Olympic Games in August.

It represented the high point of a decade in senior competition which had resulted in several successes at indoor and outdoor European Championships in addition to bronze at a World Indoor Championships since she started out in 2011.

And while Bradshaw is focused on adding more medals to her tally in 2022, it will not be at the cost of pushing herself to breaking point.

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Holly Bradshaw with her Olympic bronze medal

She said: “Although I am training now and I have been for the last couple of weeks, I am kind of taking a bit of an emotional break.

“People around me think I am a robot and for the last 10 years I have been so on it with my nutrition, my recovery. My friends will go out to the cinema but I won’t go because it is not the right thing to do while I am trying to win a medal.

“For the next month and over the last month my lifestyle has been a little more relaxed and it was definitely something I needed after this 10-year cycle that I have been through.

“But come January I am back to robot Holly. The indoors might take a little hit, it might not but I am willing to sacrifice that so I can take a little bit more of a break.”

The uncertainty of the Tokyo Games due to the coronavirus pandemic took its toll on all athletes, who despite competing 12 months later than planned were still unable to perform in front of a crowd.

After achieving one major goal of claiming an Olympic medal, Bradshaw’s immediate focus requires less effort – getting out to watch the new James Bond and Venom films.

Once that has been achieved, a busy summer will be at the forefront of her mind with a determination to compete at the World and European Championships and the Commonwealth Games.

“It was really hard to make the decision because I am one of those athletes that when I am training, I am training and I give my all.

"I am not a training addict but I am the kind of athlete who leaves no stone unturned,” Bradshaw added.

“Doing that for 10 years it has taken its toll and you need to know as an athlete when to relax and switch off.”

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