KITCHENER -- Local athletes who would have been in Tokyo this summer are now working to stay in shape to head to the Olympics in 2021.

The games were postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We should've been in Tokyo right now, getting ready to go to the opening ceremonies," Canadian Olympian Sarah Pavan said.

The Olympics were supposed to begin on Thursday. Instead, there was a "One Year to Go" ceremony.

"It's disappointing," Pavan said. "Obviously, we wish we could be there representing Canada. But, we're lucky we have another opportunity next year."

Pavan said she put a pause on playing beach volleyball since the pandemic hit.

"I haven't touched a ball since March," she said "The beaches are all closed and they're encouraging people to stay home."
However, she's still training and working out.

The same goes for Olympic boxer Mandy Bujold.

"I think this week just brings a bit of emotion back," she said. "Just thinking 'Oh my God, this would have been the pinnacle of my career, the end of my career as well."
She said the pandemic has forced her to get creative with her drills. Bujold has come up with physically distant exercises to stay in shape for next year's games.

"The intensity is just a little bit different, because you don't get the sparring and the things that usually bring that high intensity," she said. "But, I try to replicate it as much as I can."

While the athletes can't represent Canada this year, they said they're already looking forward to bringing home medals next summer.