Jyothi, who trains under head coach James Hillier at the Odisha Reliance Foundation High Performance Center (HPC) in Bhubaneswar, clocked 13.23 seconds in Cyprus on May 10, beating the then national record of 13.38 seconds. which was built in 2002.
On 22 May, he ran 13.11 seconds at the Loughborough International Athletics Meet in Great Britain, breaking the record he had just set in Cyprus. And followed it up with 13.04 seconds at the Harry Schulting Games in Watt, Netherlands on 26 May – his third gold and third national record in as many races.
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These two stunning runs put Jyothi as a front-runner for a medal when she takes to the track at the Alexander Stadium here for the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
Excerpts from an interview with India’s most promising disruptor:
Q: How do you analyze your preparations for the Commonwealth Games?
A: The preparations mainly focused on speed, balance, staying injury-free and continuing to do what has worked for me in the past that allows me to give my hundred percent.
Q: Do you think you should have run a few more international races before the Commonwealth Games?
A: Yes, it would have helped me 100% in my CWG preparation. Every competition is important because it helps me run faster. There is a gradual build up to running a good time and my body also needs to adjust and go with the flow. Mind and body will adjust and performance will come accordingly. Every competition gives me a lot of experience and helps me constantly improve my speed.
Q: You are training under head coach James Hillier at the Odisha Reliance Foundation Athletics High Performance Centre. How has training at Reliance Odisha Athletics High Performance Center helped you?
A: The main pillar of my life is Reliance Foundation HPC and it is because of their support that I got the opportunity to represent India. They have worked hard and carefully to support me, including a monthly stipend as well as spikes and kit, food and nutrition, gym and practice areas, physiotherapy and recovery, and many international opportunities. . They have helped me. With holistic development—including communication skills and soft skills to help me develop holistically as a person, and not just for me, but for everyone at HPC, see it the same. Care and effort. In 2020, before I joined HPC, I was injured, I wasn’t sure if I should continue running and then coach James contacted me, and told me about the project and the vision of HPC.
Q: How did Coach James help you prepare and work with Coach James?
A: Coach James and I have a very strong relationship. No one else knows the efforts we have made and the sacrifices we have made. He understands the way I prepare and continues to help me and understand how my body reacts to the training modules and what I want him to deliver and what I’m not comfortable with. Yes, he leaves it. He is the best coach for me and he understands the situation and works to plan according to what we both agree on. It’s not about coaching, it’s about being a mentor and Coach James is the best at that.
Q: How confident are you about winning a medal at CWG 2022?
A: It’s a big opportunity and I’m looking forward to a good and happy run. I don’t want to focus on what can go wrong, but I look at what I can do right and give my hundred percent.
Q: What are your aspirations in sports and life in general? Is there something you want or want to achieve?
A: My first wish is to participate in the Olympics and win a medal for India. When I started running, that was the spark that kept me running. My other wish is that more and more young boys and girls have the opportunity to take up athletics as a sport. We have a lot of talent in the country and I hope that in some way I can help others achieve their dream of representing the country. Athletics has given me so much joy and I would like to see many more people find joy in athletics.
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