Thrower Tori Peeters is crediting New Zealand’s level four lockdown for her career-best form.
Peeters, who originally hails from Gore, traded in her track shoes for gumboots during New Zealand’s lockdown in March and April.
“I was planning where I wanted to be if lockdown was to occur and I immediately thought my partner’s parents dairy farm outside of Cambridge would be ideal,” said the 26-year-old.
“I knew being out there would allow me to establish a good routine while feeling normal day to day.”
The national champion then got creative in her new environment. An empty shed was renovated into a gym, with farming tools transformed into lifting and throwing equipment.
“I used a sledgehammer and a tyre as weights and in the barn, we’d throw a medicine ball against a wall. I’d also practice my sprints on the road and would help on the farm which was good for my general fitness.”
Now, months on from the lockdown, Peeters is seeing the results of that hard work.
“Lockdown was hugely beneficial for me; it was great to pretty much spend that time as a full-time athlete just training constantly.
“Since then I’ve been working to turn that strength into power which has been going well.
“I’ve been hitting PBs in the gym almost every session which has been awesome, and I’ve just been riding this huge high, so I’m feeling great.”
Peeters says a bit of friendly rivalry also helped to push her training.
“Over lockdown, my boyfriend and I were often working out together, so we got a bit competitive and I was always trying to outdo him!”
Earlier this year Peeters broke the New Zealand women’s javelin record with a throw of 64.02m. She’s now looking forward to a home summer where she’ll be looking to smash her own records.
“It looks like we’ll be doing lots of competitions around New Zealand instead of internationally which is great for me.
“I love throwing in Hamilton and showing off the sport, it’s got hometown advantage for me so that suits me just fine too!”