Stef Reid is accustomed to the pressures of elite competition but not even she envisaged just how stressed she could get cooking on national television.
The Scot is best known as a world champion long jumper but has found herself leaping out of her comfort zone – appearing on BBC cooking show Celebrity Masterchef.
The latest series has already started with Reid set to appear in early September – with this her recent focus after ending her time at the World Para Athletics European Championships.
Finishing with just a bronze medal in Berlin, there was a tinge of disappointment from the 33-year-old as she failed to cook up a storm.
But having ventured into new experiences, Reid hopes a side project away from athletics has given her the right ingredients for a big two years – on and off the track.
“Masterchef was so hard, it was a great experience and it’s really easy to keep in your comfort zone, but going into something new is a process because you have to start from nothing,” she said.
“I loved doing something so foreign, but it was stressful. It was a brand new challenge and in the past year I’d taken on filming so I had lessons for that and it’s good to do something different, roll on 2019.
“You learn things about yourself and inevitably it does play into everything you do – I’ve put my acting skills to good use in this Championships.
“Who you are in life is who you are on the track, the kind of competitor I want to be manifests itself from all points of my life and I don’t want to stay in the one dimension of athletics – this is a positive distraction.
“I don’t want to watch but I think my husband will make me, I’m regretting the edit because you think you’re one person and then with the stresses you completely change. I’ve never sworn so much in my life – I’m going to be bleeped out of the whole thing!”
Whether Reid tasted success or not is still to be revealed but the day job certainly provided a mix of emotions, adding a European bronze medal to her collection.
A T64 long jump effort of 5.49 metres was enough for a place on the podium but the New Zealand-born athlete knows more is in her locker after collecting two Paralympic medals in her career so far.
Watching Marie-Amalie Le Fur leap a world record 6.01m only emphasised that belief too, leaving Berlin hungry for more ahead of next year’s World Championships.
“It was a historic moment; Marie-Amelie set a fantastic world record so I am really happy for her, but I really wanted it to be me,” added Reid, who lost her right foot in a boating accident as a teenager.
“We still have a lot of work to do so you have got to recognise that and take notes and see what they are doing and then you go back and make a plan ready for next year.
“I think I will need more speed. I think I will need to change a few things about my equipment – that has become quite obvious.
“But I think we are still in the mix. This has left a lot of fire in my belly – I don’t like coming third.
“It’s great to come away with hardware, it is a special thing and you should never discount it and you should always be grateful because often these events there are just seconds or centimetres between having something and having not.”
British Athletics works alongside UK Sport and the National Lottery to support the delivery of success at the world’s most significant sporting events, principally the Olympic and Paralympic Games. They do this via the funded initiative, the World Class Programme, one part of the British Athletics pathway.