Judoka Sarah Clark insists operations are part and parcel of competing at the very top-level of her sport as the three-time Olympian prepares to go under the knife twice before the end of the year.
Clark has enjoyed a fine career to date, representing Team GB at the 2004, 2008 and 2012 Olympics, her best result being her debut when she reached the last 16 in Athens.
However she blew that out the water this summer when she stormed to -63kg old at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
She has since been brought back down to earth with the news that she needs operations on both her ankle and shoulder over the next month, but there is no wiping the smile off the 36-year-old’s face.
“I suppose the operations are a price that has had to be paid but I have met so many good friends through judo and seen some wonderful places,” Clark told the Edinburgh Evening News.
“For most of my life, I had a tendency to go over on my ankles quite easily and competed with them taped up.
“Post-London Olympics I had to have a clear-out operation to repair cartilage damage and the pain has been pretty constant, so it will be good to get rid of that.
“During the op they are going to break my heel and, if it isn’t done now, there will be a tendency to suffer from arthritis later in life.
“Similarly, the shoulder, which was operated on three or four years ago, was causing me niggles; adrenalin helped get me through the Games.”
© Sportsbeat 2014