The difficulty is that, once athletes start beating you in the pool, on the track or in the velodrome, and you decide to hang up your spurs, it's sadly all too easy to lose touch with many of the people you’ve become good friends with.
That's why the initiative launched this week by ParalympicsGB, the Paralympian's Club, is such a good thing: a new website designed not only to reunite former GB teammates but also to engage the public with British Paralympians.
The website has three main aims: firstly, to provide retired Paralympians with a place where they can reconnect with their former teammates and network; secondly, to provide Paralympians with a variety of benefits courtesy of several London 2012 sponsors; and thirdly, to provide local communities with a way to request that a Paralympian makes an appearance – for example, to talk at a school or open a local event.
I know I'm very much looking forward to reconnecting with my former GB teammates – not only to find out what they’re up to now but to look back on shared memories from previous Paralympic Games and other competitions.
So, if you know a retired Paralympian – point them towards the website. Or if you'd just like to learn more about the stars who have donned the GB tracksuit in the past, pay the website a visit yourself.