Williams keeping feet on ground

She may be an overnight celebrity after striking Great Britain's first individual Winter Olympic gold for 30 years in Vancouver, but skeleton slider Amy Williams insists she will be back in the gym in no time.


The British squad arrived back in London on Tuesday and Williams, the only member of the 52-strong British team to reach the podium, stepped off the plane adorning her gold medal.

With interviews on the One Show and GMTV lined up within the next 24 hours, coupled with the 27-year-old's photogenic looks and sunny disposition, the promotions and publicity will not end any time soon.

Double Olympic swimming champion Rebecca Adlington blamed the media furore surrounding her return from Beijing two years ago for her disappointing performance at last year‘s World Championships.

But while Williams admits her schedule will be hectic for the next month, she insists she is fully committed to returning to full time training once the attention dies down.

"Obviously my life is going to change a little bit now," said Williams. "I accept that for the first however many weeks but once that dies down I'll be straight back in gym, back in my normal routine of training every day.

"Maybe I won't have the best season next year due to the fact I probably won't get as much physical training in.

"I trained so hard physically for Vancouver, particularly in the last summer, so I know my body needs a good rest and I am prepared for not getting the same performances.

"But it's a long four years until Sochi. I want to be there and I'll work just as hard to get there as I have for Vancouver."

It was not just Williams's body that was stretched in Vancouver, with the Bath-based athlete's bank account bled dry by her preparations and training over the past four years.

But Williams insisted she had not thought of the financial ramifications of her achievement and is adamant she is looking forward to returning to normality with her friends.

"I haven't really thought about how I'm going to be affected financially by it all," said Williams.

"Everyone has been asking me how much do you get for winning the gold but you don't get anything.

"You do it for the love of it. If any success and wealth comes of it, then it's an extra pat on the back.

"I'm just looking forward to meeting up with my friends again and going to the cinema and relaxing. I want to visit all the people I ignored last summer because I was training too hard.

"If there's one thing I might buy, it's a car. I've struggled without one because I didn't want to waste money on it. I do live by a bus stop but it would be nice one day.

"I think there's going to be lots of places I need to get to so it might be handy."

Without Williams's gold medal, Team GB would have returned from Vancouver empty-handed - a far cry from the 47 medals garnered at Beijing 2008.

London 2012 is expected to produce even more medals with home advantage factored in but Williams is keeping her fingers crossed her victory has kept the Winter Olympics on the map in the UK.

"To be honest, these Olympics have put Winter sports out there again. Before going, no one even knew the Winter Olympics much," said Williams.

"I'd say to people, I'm going to the Olympics and they'd say 'oh, the summer - you mean 2012?' and I'd say no, I'm mean Vancouver.

"It was a struggle to get the message across that there are Winter Olympics.

"I'm glad this might have helped it. It'll be great to have London happening in two years and everyone should now get more excited it.

"Everyone that's watched me get this medal and everyone who's training for it - I hope it boosts them on to training that little bit harder and they do as best as they can."

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