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On the Monaco leg of the Mare Nostrum Swim Tour sequence final month, Maana Patel had a heartbreaking expertise. She recollects, “I had a salt pill on the morning of the race however since I had not eaten something for a very long time, there was a spike in my blood strain. I vomited simply 5 minutes earlier than the occasion began and felt weak. Though I accomplished the race, the timings have been unhealthy. I’m a really excessive type of particular person. I really feel both very excited or low more often than not, and discover it difficult to regulate my thoughts. When this occurred, I felt tormented and instructed my mother, ‘I can’t do that anymore. I’ve been coaching continuous for the final two months and why did this occur now?’ It was a really silly thought and ultimately, I made a decision to hold in for the following leg of the occasion at Canet.”

And at Canet lately, one week after this forgettable expertise, she recorded the perfect Indian time (01:03:69) within the ladies’s 100m backstroke occasion. Within the course of, she bettered her personal report (01:03:77), which she had clocked at an occasion in Belgrade final 12 months. In swimming, a timing is named a nationwide report when it’s achieved on the Nationwide Aquatic Championships, whereas it’s known as ‘finest Indian time’ for achievements in different meets. Excerpts from a chat with the 22-year-old Maana, who was the one Indian feminine swimmer to signify India on the Olympics final 12 months:

‘I didn’t put any strain on myself and that helped’

After the Monaco occasion, I headed to Canet with out having any expectations and the truth that I didn’t put any strain on myself actually helped. This occasion was imagined to be the qualifying occasion for the Asian Video games, which has now been postponed. I had been making ready effectively for this meet since April and it’s an ideal feeling to register the perfect Indian time in ladies’s 100m backstroke. I’m elated and it means rather a lot. Now, I really feel assured about breaching the 1:02 mark quickly. When the Asian Video games was postponed to subsequent 12 months (because of the COVID state of affairs in China), I used to be a bit irritated as a result of such lengthy waits will be irritating. However now, I’ve determined to take a look at it positively. We now have extra time to coach laborious and put together effectively for the occasion. Proper now, I’m in nice form and with age on my facet, I’m excited in regards to the subsequent couple of years. At the moment, I’m coaching in Bengaluru and I’ll quickly take part at an occasion in Singapore in the direction of the tip of this month. At this occasion, I will likely be competing in 200m after seven years and I’m eagerly trying ahead to it.

‘I really feel recent and rejuvenated after the COVID-induced break’

The pandemic examined us bodily and emotionally however speaking about my swimming, the break that I obtained was of nice assist. I’ve been swimming continuous for 12 years and I used to be a bit exhausted. However after the COVID-induced break, I really feel recent and rejuvenated. The brand new model of me is fitter and extra assured. Now, I can see myself going solely onwards and upwards from right here.

‘This 12 months, I will likely be at dwelling throughout Navratri after a very long time’

The Nationwide Championships, which goes to be our final occasion for the season, is more likely to be held in August or September. With the swimming calendar wrapping up early this 12 months, I’ll get the possibility to spend Navratri and Diwali at my dwelling in Ahmedabad after a very long time. It needs to be nice enjoyable!

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