It's 479 days to go until the start of the  London Olympics 2012  and 512 days to go until the start of the paralympic games.

It's fascinating to see the Olympic park and venues taking shape in London, I have been watching the progress on the Official London 2012 website. Here in the North West of the UK  we are used to excellent sporting facilities and many of our Olympic hopefuls live and train in and around Manchester.I have been looking at the North West's involvement in the Olympics and here are a few facts I didn't know: 

Old Trafford will host nine football matches during the Olympic games. These will include a semi-final in both men's and women's competitions.

Furthermore 15 Pacific Island countries from Oceania are to use the North West as their training base in the build up to 2012, and possibly beyond, looking to the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

Lord Coe, London Organising Committee said:"This is great news for North West England. It is very encouraging to see Thailand signing up to use pre-games training camps in the region already"

Vanda Murray NWDA board member says"The north-west is a region passionate about sport, with world-class sporting facilities ready to host world-class athletes"

Renowned as a centre of sporting excellence, Manchester is recognised throughout the world as the home of football. But it is also synonymous with many other sports. In 2009, it was the location for a record breaking street race, when triple Olympic gold-medallist Usain Bolt cruised to victory in the fastest ever time run over 150m.

Most recently, the success of British Cycling brought Manchester to world attention as the training base of the GB cycling team. The velodrome in Manchester is a sight to behold and I recently watched the Worlds there , cheering on all our team and being in awe of their fitness and dedication. I am curently working with Victoria Pendleton at the studio using Pilates as part of her training programme.Having worked with many temas and individual sportspersons I appreciate the sheer hard work and determination that they deal with on a daily basis as well as juggling other life committments. They deserve our full support in 2012.