Raised in Burnham-on-Sea, Liam Phillips is one of the world’s leading BMX riders, having appeared at both the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games. His first European title arrived in 1999, while in 2013 he was crowned BMX World Champion. This year has again been a hugely successful one for the 26-year-old who became the first rider to win back-to-back BMX World Cup titles when he took a second series win in South Carolina in September.
In his latest blog, Liam Phillips talks commercials, Christmas and the advantages of being based in Manchester.
Find out more about Liam on his homegrown heroes profile page
From having clear out surgery on my elbow to filming an Aldi advert alongside Olympic boxing champion Nicola Adams, it’s certainly not been a boring off season so far for me – not that I’m complaining!
It’s important to make the most of this time as when you are busy competing you don’t get much opportunity to think about anything else. It also means I’ve been able to catch up on things that have been put on the back burner for a while.
Top of that list was getting surgery on my elbow, which I had always planned to do when the season finished. It wasn’t anything major but it was a case of cleaning things up a bit to make sure I’m fit and healthy for the new season.
Thankfully it all went fine and since then I’ve had some time off the bike just to refresh myself a bit.
When you’re an elite athlete you get opportunities to do things that are slightly different from everyday life and one of those was recently filming an advert for Aldi.
It was me and Nicola Adams, who is another ambassador with Aldi, and I don’t want to give too much away as it will ruin the surprise but I will say it was a lot of fun.
I took my bike down and we had lots of different people of different ages as well as a lot of fruit and veg! You’ll have to keep your eye out for it.
I’m from Burnham-on-Sea in Somerset originally and , though I try to get home as much as I can, I absolutely love being up in Manchester where I’m based with British Cycling the rest of the time.
There are of course differences between the north and south but it’s a really cool place to be. I don’t know about when I finish racing but I could maybe see myself sticking around up there.
I think that when I do finish and my time is up that I’d like to continue to work in cycling so maybe Manchester would be the place to do that. The facilities are great and the BMX is side-by-side with the velodrome and everything we need is there. For athletes this is great because I go in every day and know that everything we need to succeed is there for us.
After New Year I will be in Manchester pretty solidly preparing for the new season. Obviously the festive period is fast approaching but it’s all a bit up in the air at the moment really and I’m not exactly sure where I will be on Christmas Day.
It’s an Olympic year so I will be training hard throughout the Christmas period and won’t allow myself to indulge too much. Of course it will be nice to spend time with family but the Olympics is on the horizon and that’s crucial.
I have great people around me who all understand what it takes so it’s not too difficult to stay disciplined at that time.
Tune back in next month to find out what Liam got up to over the festive period and his training plans for the New Year