This month we hosted the last Breakfast With Champions of 2016. And what an inspiring one it was with triathlete Solonie Singh Pathania. It was organised at Patwardhan Park on 26th November 2016. Here are the event highlights for those who have missed this power pack session.
A Tri Welcome
It was a bright yet cosy Saturday morning; Patwardhan Park was its usual green self, what with birds and butterflies fluttering all around, people of all age groups walking, jogging and exercising. Team LBO was all set to start the session. I was at the registration desk and Diipti was taking care of the electricity setup. We had a couple of tech setbacks this time, what with the electricity playing spoil sport and our projector person absconding! But as all good things do, we started on time and kick-started the event with a little trailer about all things outdoorsy. Diipti then took to the stage and introduced our Champion Solonie Singh Pathania. A special tea (recipe: lemongrass, fennel seeds, cardamom powder, jaggery, tulsi leaves, and ajwain; brew it to boil) was served which was appreciated by everyone. While everyone enjoyed the chai, Solonie began sharing her tri story.
Solonie is the only Indian woman to participate and finish Ironman Sweden 2016. She is from Pune and is a full-time working professional. She was active in sports since her school days but due to a vehicular accident during her graduation she underwent a knee surgery and wasn’t able to continue sports. She explained, “By mid-2013, I realised I was out of shape and started accompanying my father, on his early morning walks. Soon, I started running and did my first non-stop 10 km run in October 2013. A few months later, I found myself training for Enduro3 2014 in Pune.” Her schedule was hectic but she enjoy the challenge of it and never skipped her training; work and training both went hand-in-hand. She started training under Dr Kautubh Radkar, the only Indian to have completed 16 Ironman races. In 2015, she completed her Half Ironman race in Huwaii and is recently back in Pune after participating and completing the Full Ironman race held in Kalmar, Sweden.
The Q&A Unfolds
In true tradition of Breakfast With Champions, after Solonie’s brief story, it was time for the audience to interact with their champion. Answering all the questions, Solonie shared her story from the time she started running till the day she completed the full Ironman. She also shared videos about what an Ironman race entails, her past, and present training regime. Meanwhile yummy and healthy breakfast of Poha was served to all. She says, “I’m a stubborn kind of person. If I decide to do something, I just can’t sit quietly till the time I achieve it. Sports and fitness are two specialties which changed me completely. First I used to think people who run for a 10K or a full marathon are dumb people and they are out of their mind. But then gradually as I was back to my fitness routine which enhanced my self-confidence; today here I am – An Ironman athlete. I am the same girl, yet I feel like a different person all together.” she added.
‘How can one start this kind of training? How many hours a day should one train for? many more such questions were in queue for her. She answered them very candidly and also explained to the audience that directly jumping into hardcore training is not good for health. Start with basic training and then gradually head to long duration training programs – taking baby steps is the key.
The audience included some outstanding people like Mehul Ved, a full Ironman athlete, Dhiraj Dedhia and Chandrika Khan who also have participated and completed in triathlon races; runners like Nitin Kumar and Aditya Sabharwal too. Mehul Ved also shared his experience of completing the recent Malaysia Ironman which was truly motivational for all of us.
Team LBO – A Happy One
Despite the glitches we faced this time, things went on with a good flow and we thank our champion Solonie and a super supportive audience. Tons of thanks to Solonie for coming all the way from Pune and sharing her experience and giving a clear idea on one of the most difficult one-day sporting events across the globe – the Ironman. Special thanks to the audience for their participation and interest throughout the event.
So what are you waiting for? Get up, get started and go for it. LBO will keep updating and organising such events for you. But truly the best way to do it is to go out, get fit, and be outdoorsy!