SOUTHLAND’S premier track cyclist has made an impressive transformation as he starts his journey towards the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
Eddie Dawkins has spent little time resting since he claimed gold at the Commonwealth Games in Australia in April. He has dropped 6kg in the quest to better prepare himself for his next challenges.
The 2016 Olympic Games silver medallist said he had always battled with his weight despite being conscious of what he ate.
He has now taken on a Paleo diet in which he had cut dairy and traditional bread from his diet. Instead he has opted for Paleo bread. Gone are the treats as well.
“I would often eat a bag of lollies in a day. Me and my wife also love our chocolate,” he said.
Dawkins said the transformation had him feeling the best he had since the lead up to the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro two years ago.
The 28-year-old was best known in track cycling circles for his power while part of the men’s team sprint alongside Sam Webster and Ethan Mitchell.
The first question which springs to mind when assessing the new-look Dawkins was just what effect his weight loss would have on that well-regarded power on the bike?
While Dawkins had not yet been involved in a competition ride since the Commonwealth Games, he said he was confident he still had the strength in his legs.
“I don’t want to get any smaller or lighter. But my power numbers in the gym are up, so I’m feeling good,” he said.
Dawkins left for Japan on Tuesday, where the first steps will be paved en route to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
He will compete in the Japan Track Cup series at the velodrome in Izu city which will be used for the Olympic Games.
It will be the one and only chance for Dawkins to get a look at the track in the lead up to the Olympics.
With Izu city 145km from Tokyo, the cyclists would not stay at the athletes’ village in 2020. Instead they would stay at a hotel close to the velodrome and Dawkins said his current trip would provide him with a chance to familiarise with the surroundings.
Dawkins and Mitchell have joined fellow team sprint member Webster, who was already in Japan competing.
“Ethan and I might be in for a bit of a shock,” he said about returning to competition.