Yep, its definitely got a lot colder now! Unfortunately the warm spell we had over December seems to have ended and the freezing sub-zero temperatures have returned, leading to some pretty cold sessions on and off of the water.

2017 started with some time with the family back home in Swanage. It was great to be back and relax, reflect and prepare for the year ahead.

 I feel so lucky to call this place home.

I feel so lucky to call this place home.

It also was very nice to return home to find the local newspaper covering my story about being part of the British Sailing Team - thanks guys!

 Great to see sailing taking the back page.

Great to see sailing taking the back page.

I then was at Hayling Island Sailing Club, near Chichester, for some training with one of the best coaches in the country. We had a solid plan and learnt so much which we will definitely use moving forwards.

 First training session of 2017!

First training session of 2017!

Despite the cold my training always continues as normal. Sailing sessions have to be shorter and more intense but it's a good job I have some lovely warm winter kit to prevent hypothermia!

 Thanks to Zhik and Sandiline whose products help keep me warm on these cold winter sessions.

Thanks to Zhik and Sandiline whose products help keep me warm on these cold winter sessions.

As part of my training I've also been putting in a few miles on the bike and have had some great rides with the guys. Apart from the cold it has been really nice weather and we've been exploring the local area. I even discovered an old railway track (now cycle path) which I had never seen before and in the process learnt quite a lot about the history of Weymouth & Portland! Crazy times.

 Exploring the roads around Portland on my bike.

Exploring the roads around Portland on my bike.

2017 has also brought change in the form of a new place to live. Last week I moved into my new accommodation, sharing a lovely little house with a fellow sailor. It's the perfect setup and I even have a lovely view of the sea out of my window - allowing me to capture some epic sunset photos like this one below.

 The view from my room.

The view from my room.

Upcoming I've got a busy month ahead, with a few week blocks of training with a coach before the start of 2017 competitions next month in February. Fingers crossed they won't be too icy cold...

 Game face on!

Game face on!

2016 was undoubtedly the best year of my life. There was a lot of change, many tough decisions and countless obstacles but I worked hard to overcome the challenges and I now feel more at home than ever before.

So what's the plan for this next year? Well I have a few goals, a big plan and a lot of determination. Hopefully combined with a little bit of luck, 2017 will be even better than 2016. We shall see.

I'm doing what I love and what I dream about and for that I am incredibly grateful. Thank you to everyone who is, and has, made this dream a reality. Lets keep pushing onwards and upwards!

Sam