I trained slum girls for the Mumbai Marathon

I started my athletic journey in 3rd grade.

Being an asthma patient, poor health was the main obstacle.

The fastest girls’ shuttle races took me to my school’s Sports Division.

In seventh grade, Binti Kaur taught me the scissors for a high jump, my jump for the gold medal.

My eighth grade equals my golden year.

First place in all track and field events, championship of best athlete and record holder.

The VPM sports club helped me fly high.

I became a national gold medalist!

However, my tuition teacher put me off.

‘So it’s just a medal,’ he said.

In utter desperation, I gave up athletic training for education.

The SSC (10th grade) and HSC (12th grade) board exams are very important in India and many athletes and sports students find themselves committing their talents to education in these years.

College life left me without athletic training due to the distance from my university which was on the other end of the city.

My athletic gaps kept deepening.

I did my graduation in social work.

I was a social worker and sports fan, but dengue caused a great loss of muscle mass.

My heart was repaired with the soul mate that I encountered during my social work course.

An accident tore me mentally and physically, I literally still have a broken finger.

As a communications associate at the Myna Mahila Foundation, I trained slum girls for the Mumbai Marathon.

The flashbacks kept happening.

Now, during my postgraduate degree in Social Work, I am Coaching at Kleinetics.

My parents, Clody, Simone, Jyothi, Ophealia, Siddhi, Ivannah and Anna were always supportive of me.

My career guidance report said, “Biology, Medicine, Engineering, Sports, and Entrepreneurship.”

Actually, I was just restricting myself, but avoiding sports.

So after my recovery from covid I started ‘Join Coach Nicole – JNC’ and I think nothing is impossible.

I did a handstand with broken fingers, you can too!

(Nicole Coutinho)

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