#AthletesBlog: Zanele Situ – I am Still Hopeful

by | Feb 23, 2022

I always say when I was in a coma years ago, God was fighting for me because there were better plans ahead!

When I awoke from that coma, I realised how I was a little better than the other kids at the time around me. It motivated me and that’s how I ended up in a special school doing sport.

When I went to my first IPC Athletics World Championships, I did not see the difference between the competition and our Nationals. The only difference was that the World Championships had many more competitors.

At that time, I was also coaching myself, so I just went there to do what I could and I didn’t think I’d come back home with a gold medal.

Fast forward to the Tokyo Paralympic Games – what a challenge it was because of Covid-19! The experience was different, but I enjoyed being there, even though it rained on my day of competition which affected my game as a seated thrower.

Another huge impact was the fact that we had less time to prepare for Tokyo because of the pandemic. The facilities were closed and when they were open, you were expected to train individually. So for me as a seated thrower it’s way too difficult to train alone without any help.

On the financial side, I have always had struggles because one needs supplements and you need to eat the right food, which is expensive. I did not have those things because of the lack of money. Even now, I am not using the required supplements and that leads eating whatever I find in front of me.

Despite the challenges, I am pushing on. I am currently training and focusing on the Nationals next month (March 2022). We also have a competition on Saturday (26 February 2022) just to prepare the mind for the Nationals and putting myself in a better position.

I’m not sure about the World Championships in Birmingham (August 2022). I am still not sure if I will be going there due to my financial problems. It’s still a struggle so I can’t say anything about it. Even with the Nationals I’m still struggling to get sponsors but I’m hopeful.

 

Photo 1 Caption: Two-time world javelin champion, Zanele Situ, speaks on how she soldiers on in the middle of financial storms. Photo: Zanele Situ (Instagram)

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