November 27, 2019 | mfhfzdun | No Comments
The best things in life often start out as a calling of the heart. The same worked for me, as I set my feet firm on the paddles of my very-average bike back in 2008.I grew up like an average Nepalese girl, going to school, helping my parents with chores when needed, taking each day as it comes. At the age of 20, I just happened to cross paths with the sport of mountain biking, thanks to a friend who was into it. There was only one other woman mountain biker when I first started out, and I was excited to be able to ride with her. Thanks to limited study hours, I had enough time to dedicate to cycling.Through the treacherous terrains of Leh. Picture courtesy: Facebook/Laxmi Magar Soon after, I discovered that I loved biking on the mountains because of the view it provided, and it just stuck with me. The fact that I lost 7 kgs within a couple of months of starting out could also be the push. But it really didn’t have to be. I was also lucky in the sense that my parents supported my passion for the sport all the way through. They didn’t discourage me from achieving whatever I wanted to, even if it did not pay any dividends initially.I’m 27-year-old Laxmi Magar from Nepal, a three-time women’s mountain biking champion.Also Read: She’s a single mum, rides a Bullet, is a Limca record holder-and she’s 53 My latest achievement–Manali-Khardungla Cycling Championship (MKCC) 2015–saw a total of 63 participants compete against each other amidst challenging conditions and tough terrains; we crossed 500 kms in the high Himalayas in 9 days, pedalling all the way from Manali to the world’s highest motorable pass, Khardung La (18,380 ft) in Ladakh. The Manali-Leh-Khardungla highway stretches over 500 kms, and predominantly comprises of paved roads with stretches of sand, gravel and rocky terrains. And boy was it the journey of a lifetime!advertisementMost of you might be wondering how disciplined a training schedule mine would be. The truth is, I got seriously into racing only in 2012, so I put together a training plan, thanks to some internet research; there is no mountain biking or cycling coach in Nepal. But I’ve found several coaching websites now.Picture courtesy: Facebook/Laxmi Magar At the risk of sounding like a narcissist, women in Nepal do take inspiration from me. Now, we have about 10 women bikers–four of them are from the army. But what I can’t lay enough stress on is the family’s support. In my case, it started out as the glow and joy that would emanate from my mother’s face every time I brought home a medal. That pushed me to keep training harder, try more difficult altitudes and achieve what no one had dared to. And no, my journey wouldn’t have been easier if I were a man; the same way it wouldn’t have been any harder if I were a man. Our bodies react the same way to training; differences are created by us. You just need to know what you want; you can easily condition your mind to give you just that over a period of time, only, with consistency.