"After a difficult past few weeks and a slow start to the season following a recent virus I’m happy to report I’ve just enjoyed my best week’s training of the year which puts me in a great positive frame of mind ahead of this British Olympic Trials which take place this weekend.
"I got back from Oslo and had a great seven days of intensive work. Some of the sessions were the best I’ve run all year and as quick as I’d run in previous years, so to perform at that level of training was very satisfying. I felt as if the consistency was returning and Malcolm, my coach, could see that that the old Dai was coming back.
"You may have read some reports recently that I underwent knee surgery in the winter which we decided to keep quiet at the time. We made this decision because we didn’t want to be constantly quizzed about it and I preferred to forget about it and focus on the positives. We only opted to make this information public now because of the good week’s training I have. I had the operation just before Christmas and while it wasn’t a major operation, I was back in spikes again three weeks later, like any surgery there are always risks. The doctors scraped away a few bits of cartilage as they thought this was causing the acute pain. It was quite hard at the time because I was having to undergo a lot of re-hab just to be fit for sessions. Thankfully, the surgery was successful and I’m not in any pain at the moment.
"Since my last IAAF diary I have competed in my first two races of the season in Rabat and Oslo. I finished second in Morocco in 48.96 when I felt a bit rusty but as it was my first race of the season I wasn’t too disappointed. I travelled on to Rome really looking forward to what would have been my first Samsung Diamond League race of the year but I fell ill on the day of the competition after coming down with a summer virus so had to withdraw.
"I moved on to Oslo hoping for a better performance but it wasn’t to be. I knew at the time I couldn’t compete with Javier Culson who was obviously in 47.9 shape, but I thought I was in better shape than the 48.98 I ran for fourth. Having said that I knew because of surgery I wouldn’t be setting the world alight at the start of the season.
"However, that is all now in the past and after my excellent last week’s training I’m really looking forward to the Trials. We have five GB athletes with A standard Olympic qualification times for the 400m hurdles so there is going to be some hot competition. I’m very motivated to run well at the trials and it would be nice to put down a marker. It is going to be a close competition with five guys fighting for three places in the Olympic team. It is going to very interesting and I envy those people on the sidelines watching the action.
"At the trials I’ll also be playing a first – a personalised three-minute track to help motivate me before a competition. I was working on the track with the help of music producer Redlight and sports psychologist Dr Costas Karageorghis of Brunel University.
"The track has been prepared specifically for me and will help put me in the right frame of mind for the race. It is not too up tempo but not too slow either. It has a steady bassline with an uplifting ending. It just seems to work for me and I’ll listen to the track on my iPod before I go into the call room ahead of the Olympic Trials.
"Besides training and racing I’ve also enjoyed catching the football action in Euro 2012. The games have been on an afternoon and evening which allows me to watch many of them. It was a shock to see the Dutch knocked out the other night while it was great seeing Greece celebrate like they’d won the tournament after making it through to the knockout stages.
"I’d also like to give my congratulations to my coach Malcolm Arnold whom was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List. Malcolm is modest and doesn’t like to boost of his achievements but it was great to see him get some richly deserved recognition.
"Finally, I’d like to wish my former training partner, the 2008 Olympic 400m Hurdles bronze medallist Tash Danvers, the best of luck for the future after she was forced to retire following injury. It is really disappointing that Tash could not make a full recovery. Occasionally you would see glimpses of her class but injury did not allow her to show her best. She was always a positive influence around the training group and she really will be missed. I don’t think anyone ever has a bad word to say about her.
"Until next time,"
Mauro Vinicius da Silva