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Dani Christmas back on track

9 November, 2012

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Dani Christmas is delighted to be getting back on track after suffering from a devastating illness, and attributes her progress to the amazing support she has received from Dame Kelly Holmes.

Dani 24, has battled back to full fitness after suffering from post-viral fatigue and is looking forward to racing on 18 November at the Brooks Brighton 10km. She owes her recovery to Aviva ‘On Camp with Kelly’, the mentoring and education programme created by the Double Olympic Champion in 2004. She was selected to attend the very first training and education camp in Potchefstroom, South Africa.

Dani, who won Silver in the 800m at the Aviva UK Indoor Championships and European Trials last February said:

“Kelly has worked with me for eight years and has been the constant guiding light in my athletics career. Despite being an incredibly busy person, she has been there every step of the way with advice and assistance. I would never have been able to get back onto the track without the benefit of her help and experience.”

Since graduating from Loughborough University last summer Dani, has endured a tough twelve months battling the effects of post-viral fatigue. The condition left Dani incapable of training and she had to sleep for fourteen hours each day. Following advice from Kelly and ‘On Camp with Kelly’ sports doctors, it was decided she would sit out the 2012 track season.

“It has been heart-breaking at times but Kelly has been extremely supportive throughout the process, she’s been a shoulder to cry on and there to point me in the right direction. Having suffered from glandular fever herself she understood what I was going through.” said Dani.

Dame Kelly also helped by employing Dani while she recovered, giving her a role within the Kelly Holmes Education team, creating bespoke programmes to help young people fulfil their sporting potential and realise their dreams.

Dame Kelly said:

“I will be so pleased to see Dani getting back into her athletics, I know how hard it has been over the past twelve months for her, especially seeing athletes she has got to know through Aviva ‘On Camp with Kelly’ continue to progress at the highest levels, with a couple even competing in London 2012.

“My journey to the top involved some massive highs and lows, and I feel I have been able to pass on my advice and tips to build a supportive team around Dani and help her to keep believing in herself, but allow her body to take a complete rest. I have seen Dani grow so much as a person over the past eight years and whilst working for me she has been a huge asset to my team helping to deliver on Kelly Holmes Education, including the launch of two new programmes in Gateshead and on the Isle of Man.”

Dani is now back in training and looking forward to the year ahead, starting at the Brooks Brighton 10K, which marks one year since her last competitive outing. She added: “Brooks have supported me through this tough time so it is fitting that my first race back will be at the Brighton 10K. I’m not expecting to record a fast time but it is a major milestone in my recovery and future progress.”

Follow Dani on Twitter @Dani_Christmas



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