Gomathi Marimuthu is one amazing human. She recently won India’s first gold medal in the women’s 800-metre race at the 23rd Asian Athletics Championships held in Doha, Qatar. Not only is this a historic win for India, it is also an inspiring story of a woman who has overcome all sorts of odds to reach this milestone. Here are a few of the many reasons why Gomathi is a gold medallist of life!
Thirty-year-old Gomathi has won her first international gold medal at an age that is considered retirement time for athletes. Her story is a message to us that we are never too old to follow our dreams.
Following a severe groin injury in 2016, Gomathi could not train for two whole years. Two years is a lot of precious time and muscle to lose in an athlete’s career. This makes her win at Doha one marvellous comeback story!
Gomathi grew up in a village where “no one knew what ‘sports’ meant,” and trained on her own for several years before she found a coach who could guide her. Gomathi kept herself motivated along the way with the inspirational story of Shiny Wilson, India’s former queen of middle-distance running. And she even found a mentor in former running rival P.Francis Mary (in the picture) who is now a part of her ‘family.’ #squadgoals
The year 2016 was a bad one for Gomathi. She suffered an injury, lost her coach and her father all within the same period. Following her father’s demise, she had to join her mother in working the farmlands her father once used to, just to keep the household going. Despite physical and emotional pain, Gomathi went on to become ‘Queen of Doha.’
Gomathi comes from an extremely humble background. Her father was a daily wage farmer who worked from 4 a.m. in the morning through the scorching afternoons of Tiruchirappalli just to make ends meet. She became the powerhouse runner that she has without access to basic food or even shoes. The turnaround in her circumstances is a message to never give up working towards our own golden moment.
…And if you think Gomathi is resting on her laurels, think again. She is using her victory at Doha to fuel her ambitions to qualify for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo next. Good luck Golden Gomathi!