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Updated January 30th, 2024 at 21:03 IST

From weight loss to Olympic gold, how KIYG 2023 medalist Chelsi is modifying her goals

Delhi’s Chelsi is one of those few international achievers who have hogged the limelight at the Khelo India Youth Games 2023 Tamil Nadu.

Reported by: Republic Sports Desk
Chelsi
Chelsi | Image:KIYG
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Her intention was to just shed a few kilos at the gym but it was then that weightlifting happened. And now Chelsi prioritises the sport even more than her family.

Delhi’s Chelsi is one of those few international achievers who have hogged the limelight at the Khelo India Youth Games 2023 Tamil Nadu. She won the gold at the Youth Women 71kg category in Chennai with a total lift of 184 kg (81 kg Snatch, 103kg Clean and Jerk).

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This is her 2nd medal at the Khelo India Youth Games, having won a bronze earlier at the KIYG Bhopal last year. “I can’t explain this feeling of winning a gold. This will motivate me to go further and I have to now get a gold for the country at the Olympics. Mirabai Chanu didi won silver, Karnam Malleswari ma’am won the Bronze and I want now want to win get the gold,” said Chelsi.

The 17-year-old Chelsi started weightlifting training just a couple of years back following a mere recommendation by her gym trainer.

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“In two years, I’ve achieved a lot and I don’t want to stop,” she continued. “Two years back, I joined a gym in my hometown for 6 months just to lose some extra body weight. My trainer Vivek bhaiya then asked me to start Weightlifting, mentioning the sport had a lot of prospect from India.

“If Vivek bhaiya wouldn’t have recommended that, I wouldn’t have taken weightlifting. Since that day on, I can’t see beyond lifting. I prioritise the sport more than even my family. I don’t meet them for almost a year due to my ongoing training regime but then again I keep reminding myself that I’m doing it for India,” Chelsi added.

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Chelsi made her first international participation at the Commonwealth Weightlifting Championships in Noida in 2023 where she bagged the silver. She also competed at the 2023 Asian Youth Championships where she stood 5th.

The girl from Bawana, following her foray into weightlifting, has taken off on a challenging journey to achieve her aim. “I used to travel 2 hours from my home to the JLN stadium in Delhi and it also took me another 2 hours to return. For one full year, this was the routine for me from 12 pm to 9pm,” she said.

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“Then I went over to the Karnam Malleswari foundation at Yamuna Nagar where I trained under Naveen sir and Karnam ma’am. I also trained at the SAI NCOE Patiala during a 4-month long national camp last year. Karnam ma’am’s words are so motivating and she keeps on pushing me to bring the gold for the country at the Olympics.

Now that the gold medal at the Khelo India games is achieved, Chelsi, who strictly doesn’t use social media, looks ahead with firm determination. “Next day onwards, I’ll start training. No rest and no pain, no gain,” she chuckles. “I have to train twice a day and just plan on the gold. I’m lucky that my parents have been supportive and I promise you, you’ll see me at the Olympics.”

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Published January 30th, 2024 at 21:03 IST

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