HARTLEPOOL’S Jemma Lowe admits she has considered quitting swimming on several occasions since London 2012 but vowed to fight on despite failing to make an individual final at the World Championships.
Butterfly specialist Lowe fell at the semi-final stage in the 100m on Sunday and again in the 200m yesterday – her time of 2:08.53minutes only good enough for 13th at the Palau Sant Jordi.
Two years ago at the Shanghai World Championships the 23-year-old made the final of both disciplines while exactly 12 months to the day today (Thursday) she finished sixth in the 200m at the London 2012 Olympics.
And after her disappointing overall finish in the 200m in Barcelona Lowe revealed it has been tough to see her performance level drop, to the extent where she questions her future in the sport.
But, with the next Olympics in Rio in 2016 her ultimate goal, Lowe claims she could not face not having a go at what would be her third Games in Brazil, following appearances at London 2012 and Beijing 2008, in three years time.
“I want to keep going to the next Olympics and I feel like I have so much more to give and I can go so much faster,” said Lowe.
“I’m going to make myself, even if it is really hard to stick at it, because I am still young and I have so much more to give.
“Swimming is only a short career, when you get to 30 you can’t really swim anymore so I’m going to keep going.
“These are the days when I think ‘I should just give up now’ after going so hard at it for so many years but I know I would hate myself if I just gave up.
“I had a good year last year making the final at the Olympics and I gave everything in training last year as I always have.
“But for some reason it just hasn’t worked but hopefully it will get better and better as the years go on to Rio.”
Earlier in the day Lowe clocked 2:10.21 in the heats, which placed her down in 12th, and she admits she went all out to better that in the semi-final.
“The plan was to go out much faster because I felt like my stroke rate was too slow in the morning,” she added.
“So I decided just to go for it and try and hold on but it wasn’t quite good enough. I gave it my best shot but this year has been a really tough year after the Olympics last year.”
* Britain’s athletes are funded by UK Sport as the nation’s high performance sports agency responsible for the strategic investment of £355million of National Lottery and Exchequer funding in Olympic and Paralympic sports preparing for Rio 2016. The ambition is to win more medals than in London 2012 while building a stronger more sustainable high performance system. www.uksport.gov.uk