Kelly Sotherton bristles at the lack of acclaim her career has received but admits it has aided her preparations for Beijing.
Birchfield Harrier Sotherton is being tipped by many to improve on the Olympic bronze she won in Athens when she lines up in a heptathlon field weakened by the withdrawal of defending champion Carolina Kluft.
Even Kluft herself has trumpeted Sotherton's claim to heptathlon gold while Kelly Holmes is another admirer, believing victory is hers for the taking.
Such high-profile backing is welcomed by one of Britain's brightest medal prospects, but the overall lack of recognition still rankles.
"It's been said many times that we need to match the three medals we won in Athens and that annoys me," she said. "The track and field team didn't win three medals, we won three golds and a bronze and I'm our only individual medalist returning to the Olympics.
"Yet what I did doesn't seem to get highlighted, which makes me upset. I'm an Olympic bronze medalist going back to the Games. I don't think I've had half as much press as I probably could or should have had.
"The focus is still on other athletes - Phillips Idowu, Christine Ohuruogu, Paula Radcliffe and the relays. They tend to get more attention.
"Maybe that's because it's just me and not me and Jessica Ennis, who has pulled out through injury, competing in the event. If it was Jessica and I it would be a lot more hype.
"Also, a lot of people are writing me off because I haven't really had much of a season due to illness and injury problems. I'm 31 and people are doubting whether I can do it.
"But in many ways I'm also happy that people don't seem to talk me up. I'd rather they forget about me - it's more comfortable that way because it lets me get on with things."
Sitting alongside the Olympic bronze in Sotherton's medal collection are a world bronze and Commonwealth gold.
In total she has accumulated six podium finishes from eight major tournaments, leading her to believe she has developed a big game mentality. And she accepts she will need to draw on her iron will to triumph in an immensely competitive heptathlon field that she claims will not be separated until the final event.
"One of my American friends calls me 'Gamer' because that's what they call US athletes who can perform on the day," she said. "I feel I'm able to switch it on for the big occasion. It's about not letting the pressure get to you.
"A lot of athletes fail because they don't know how to deal with the pressure. I deal with it very well, it comes naturally.
"The heptathlon will be very close this year and is guaranteed to go to the last event. We won't know who has won until the last event is over.
"Five girls have scored higher than I ever have, but can they do it on the big day? I know I can. Also because of the injury and illness problems I've suffered this season they're unaware of what sort of shape I'm in.
"I call myself the 'favourite underdog'. I'm an underdog, but also a favourite to win gold."
Sotherton's claims to Olympic gold are strong, despite an Achilles heel which continues to undermine her performance.
Of the seven events the javelin remains a weak point that can be exploited by her rivals. She is heartened by a steady improvement in the discipline but admits the constant attention on her lack of distance has become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
"It's two or three metres longer than in previous years so that's 40-60 points more," she said. "I always get criticised for it being bad, and it is bad, but can't they recognise the progress I'm making? If people can't recognise that progress then they're blind.
"People keep bringing the javelin up and that just makes it more negative. It's not a physical problem, it's a mental one. The more of a point people make about it, the more I struggle.
"When I get on the runway for the javelin I feel the tension while for any other event that doesn't happen."