I caught up with track athlete Amy Hillyard recently on a moody overcast day at the Shobnall complex in Burton on Trent. Amy and her training partner Ellie Stevens
had very kindly agreed to take part in my new project and also answer some questions on their background and motivations.
Amy trains with Birchfield Harriers and runs the 400m, but also competes in 400m hurdles and 200m and has had quite a journey to get to this point in her career. She has already represented England and medalled at major championships.
“Achieving my England vest was probably in there with one of the best things that has ever happened me. The feeling was incredible.”
3 years ago, Amy lost her coach who she had trained with for the previous 8 years.
“When this happened it was really tough. I didn’t know if I wanted to carry on because I thought I would never be able to find that bond with any other coach. But then I realised he would have wanted me to carry on, so I did because I wanted to make him proud. The past few years have been tough because I have not had that athlete coach relationship where you are able to talk about anything at all, but recently I feel like I have started to find myself again and everything is fixing into place.”
To compete at this level of sport, dedication and motivation is key.
“Every athlete is highly motivated because they want to achieve the best they can. What motivates me the most is wanting to achieve my future goals. That feeling you get after a training session when you are dead on the floor, is probably one of the best feelings because you know you gave it your all and you can walk off the track knowing you did not give up.”
What are your future goals?
“My goal in this sport is to achieve a GB vest, to represent my home country would be a huge honour. Future plans are to keep improving in everything I do. Whatever is supposed to will happen eventually! I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. “
Check out some of the images we shot below. The aim was to produce a series of photos showing the focus and determination of the athletes, while also highlighting the brands involved, both subtly and more graphically.