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Last Updated: Saturday September 13 2008 16:32 GMT

Olympic Diaries: Nathan Stephens

Nathan Stephens training in the discus

The Olympic Games get going later this year in Beijing, China.

Team GB is sending a strong team, hoping to win more medals than four years ago when the Games were held in Athens, Greece.

As the opening ceremony gets closer, Sportsround is finding out about the Games from five people taking part, including Nathan Stephens.

He'll be taking part in the javelin, shot put and discus in the Paralympics, which takes place just after the Olympics.


PARALYMPICS - NATHAN STEPHENS

ENTRY FOUR

What's the atmosphere like in Beijing?
It's been absolutely phenomenal so far, can't wait for my javelin competition. Really enjoyed everything about the Games and being in Beijing.

How did your shot put event go - what's it like competing?
Shot Putt went ok, really pleased to make the final of my shot putt, that wasn't really expected. Discus didn't quite go to plan, but still enjoyed it, which is the main thing in my discus.

The crowds are phenomenal, by far the biggest I've ever competing in front of. It's a bit of a shock to hear 60,000 Chinese chanting; it's quite scary but really good.

What are training conditions like?
I've been really impressed with the facilities out here. I was a bit worried before I came out about the facilities for training, but they are great.

What's next for you?
Javelin is the event that I came out here for, so really forward to that. Hoping to put a couple of good training sessions in and perform on the big day!

What's a typical day like when you're not competing - what do you do?
My typical day is sleeping; eating and watching everyone else compete from the village. Lounging on the sofa usually with a cup of coffee watching my team-mates on the TV.

Any funny stories you can tell us?
Nothing funny yet! But you can look out for Brian Alldis' hair, it is going blue for the marathon. It will go blue, I've got my dye ready!

ENTRY THREE

My kit has arrived which is really cool!

It's an exciting time for me but also for my friends and family, especially Mum and Dad who are flying out to Beijing as well.

I haven't started packing yet but soon I'll be dying my hair red, white and blue! They're the colours of Team GB.

I'll post a pic in my next entry... unless it goes pink!


ENTRY TWO

My sessions are getting more intense now. I'm doing more throws and in the gym I'm lifting heavier weights.

I eat loads of pasta before and after I train because it's full of carbohydrates which give me energy.

I'm also eating rice for the same reason and steak, chicken and fish to help build my muscle. That's mainly what I'll be eating in China but I'm going to try some local dishes too!


ENTRY ONE

I've stepped up my training quite a lot now. I'm training twice a day, six days a week.

And it's going to get tougher as the weeks go on.

This is going to be my first summer Paralympic Games. It's getting more nerve-wracking - thinking about going out there on the biggest stage you can compete on. And the extra training I'm putting in will hopefully do me well.

Nathan training in the shot put
I'm working a lot to build my strength in the gym as well. That's so that I can generate a lot more power and throw further.

Every athlete goes out there to win. For me, in the javelin, I really want to come back with a medal. And for shot and discus, I'm going out there for the experience.