Boxer Kellie Harrington has had a busy 12 months. Scratch that - she's had a busy 5 years.
Since bursting onto the amateur boxing scene in 2016, Harrington has earned a collection of medals in European competition, gold and silver at the World Championships, before topping it all off with a gold medal at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
It's not in an elite athlete's character to decide that they've achieved plenty for the time being. Success only serves to further whet the appetite.
Harrington had been gearing up for the World Boxing Championships in Turkey in December. Due to the pandemic, they have been postponed until March next year.
However, Harrington admits she did not view the cancellation as entirely bad news.
SPAR and Kellie Harrington today launched the SPAR Christmas Community Fund, which is an initiative where SPAR want to reward and acknowledge 10 local community mentors by giving them the chance to win €1,000 for their club.
Speaking on today's OTB AM as part of the launch, the Olympic champ and national hero revealed some time off was greatly needed.
"It was kind of a welcome cancellation for me this time around," Harrington said. "I need a bit of a break."
She continues: "I went straight back into training at 100 miles an hour after a small break, and my body got quite run-down. I went back in thinking I could just get back in from where I left off, but that's not the case."
Besides, Harrington sees the benefit in not having to go straight back into training with Team Ireland.
"I'll be able to work on things that you wouldn't be able to work on in a team environment," she noted. "I'll come up with my own coach in the club, Noel Burke, and work on small things like footwork and strength."
Harrington: "I'm gonna say: 'F- it, Kellie; you deserve it'"
Harrington also explained she is going to take full advantage of her time away from the sport.
"I don't have anything until March, so I'm gonna enjoy Christmas. I've been listening to Dan Carter's podcast. Sometimes you listen to these podcasts and think: 'my God - I should be doing this.'"
"But you should be doing what's right for you - you need to switch off. And I am switching off for the Christmas. When I hear those voices in my head, I'm gonna say: 'F- it, Kellie; you deserve it, you worked hard. You've barely taken a break since 2016.'"
"Now is the time where you can take a break, but as soon as the New Year kicks in, the wheels are in motion again - you have to knock all those cakes on the head!"
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