Lawrence Okoye, Olympic Discus Finalist, Talks Rugby & Chicken!
I’m the new kid on the block!
I’m just 20 and I’ve only been throwing the discus for two years. In 2010, I thought I’d give it a go, I enjoyed it and progressed quickly. Before I knew it, I’d become a full-time discus thrower and had even broken the British record with a throw of 68.24m!
I turned my back on rugby career
I played rugby union for the London Irish youth team until I was 18, then after my exams, I was supposed to play for Esher RFC in my gap year and work my way up from there.
It would have been a good chance for me to play in the first team and get some exposure to rugby at a senior level. But with the Olympics coming up, I was keen to push on with the discus and fulfil my dream of competing at London 2012 for Britain.
I throw 300 times a week!
During the season, I usually throw the discus 200 to 300 times a week. The rest of my training is mainly based around lifting. I do power lifts, jumping, sprinting and also special sessions with heavy discs, light discs and medicine balls. My training is focused on getting me as powerful as possible and making sure my technique is as good as it can be.
Croydon is a hotbed for sporting talent!
I’m from Croydon and you might not have thought it, but the town is a hotbed for producing sporting talent. We have hurdler Andy Turner, sprinters Harry Aikines-Aryeetey and Martyn Rooney, rugby player Danny Cipriani and footballer Victor Moses. Oh, and then there’s a quite well-known football manager called Roy Hodgson, who’s a born-and-bred Croydon boy!
It’s all about the protein!
I eat four to six meals a day. Most of this consists of food with high protein values, such as shakes and bars, but also loads and loads of chicken and eggs! Protein is really important if you’re trying to build up strength, as it helps build muscle. So I have about five eggs for breakfast, then chicken, protein bars and shakes throughout the day. My food isn’t the most exciting but, luckily for me, my mum’s a great cook, so always makes me a great roast chicken!