GLOSS Volume 1, Issue 6 - 2018 - Page 37

Some achievements you would like to highlight? Every medal that I have won is very precious to me, but getting nominated and receiving the Tamgha E Imtiaz in 2012 was one of the biggest achievements so far. I won my first gold medal at the World Islamic Games in 2001, followed by another gold medal against an Indian swimmer in 2007. I was awarded the Pakistan Youth Icon Award in 2008. What is an ideal day like in your life with training, morning routines, family life etc? I train 7 months throughout the year and during competition season, I train around 8 hours/day for 5 days a week. My sessions start at 6 am to 8:30 am, where I go swimming followed by a 30-minute gym workout. Post gym, I have my breakfast, rest, lunch and then back to the pool at 3:30 pm, followed by another hour-long gym session. At 4:30 pm to 6 pm, I swim again, have my dinner and I am off to bed. During off-season, my morning starts at about 7:30 am with the normal breakfast routine. From 11 am to 1 pm I am at the gym, and then from 4 pm to 6 pm, I swim. This happens twice a week and gives me time to socialise as well. Do you think that there is something from an athlete’s routine that everyone should adopt? The rest is the media's duty to promote it all in a positive way and Yes, a lot of things. First and foremost is patience and persistence, equally to end this dis crimination. punctuality and discipline. Then you have to let go of your fear of failing and giving up. Do you think that this is difficult? Please elaborate. It is not difficult, but it’s a huge step where cricket and cricketers have Moreover, every person should make a habit of exercising daily for taken over and brands have been investing and commercialising a 30 minutes and one will feel the change when you not only feel sport, which in most cases is cricket. energetic, but positive as well. Even though, cricket is most watched, there are 35 other sports Being a female athlete, how do you deal with criticism? Any in Pakistan that need to be equally highlighted in the sports field. incident you would like to share? I absolutely love it!! There is nothing better than getting criticised What differences have you noticed in challenges faced by other for something, especially something that I love and maybe others international players? don't because clearly, I am not doing it for them. I believe in each country everyone is fighting their own battles every day. Internationally, they are all well equipped and well I get criticised at gyms on how I look (they want me to look petite trained so their challenges are different than what I face. and skinny, whereas I want to look like an athlete and have that physique). I rather find it adoring that people think about all the What is your diet routine like? Any health tips that maybe things I choose not think about not only because I chose this everyone should follow? profession, but because I don't want to live by the societal norms. I, personally, don't have a strict diet. I take 7 small meals a day when I am training and 5 meals when I am not. What does it take to be a female athlete in a male-dominated society like Pakistan? Staying hydrated is also key, so water and fresh juices are a must It is not as bad as people think. At least in my case, I had my along with greens in my food along with vitamins. mentor and coach. My biggest support was my father. They say that having a male supporter by your side is ideal whether it's your Dairy, fewer spices, no junk or frozen food is also something I take husband, brother or father, but having this support together is a care of, which is why I end up cooking myself fresh meals all the true blessing. time. 37