Vijender at Sahara awards
|Real name||Vijender Singh Beniwal|
|Height||6 ft 0 in (183 cm)|
|Born||(1985-10-29) 29 October 1985
Kaluwas village, Bhiwani district, Haryana, India
|Wins by KO||7|
Sportspersons have to reinvent themselves every day. It helps them improve.
Most athletes are media shy. They keep to themselves and to their training. I’m not saying it is absolutely necessary for them to come out and face the cameras with confidence, but if they do, it will only help them. They will find themselves closer to their fans and will also get their word across more effectively.
I have a carbohydrate and protein-rich diet. For breakfast, I typically have two slices of bread with butter or jam, four to five eggs – boiled or fried – a few bananas and a glass of milk.
I’m a big fan of the ‘Rocky’ series. Given the chance, I’d love to meet Sylvester Stallone. But apart from boxing, I’m an ardent fan of tennis and football.
I knew very little or nothing about the Olympics. Having qualified was itself a big achievement for me, and then being there was quite overwhelming. Although I lost in the opening round, but the fact that I fought well was enough for me to take away from Athens.
I have always liked to get my pictures taken, and I like taking care of my looks. But, I am not one to use beauty products and treatments.
Jagdish Singh was my basic coach, and he trained me from my very early days in boxing, teaching me the fundamentals of the sport. He was the one who shaped me into a boxer, disciplined me when I required disciplining.
I train for around 3-4 hours everyday. It can go up to 6-7 hours when a competition is approaching.
I know my Beijing medal has been a watershed moment in the history of Indian boxing, but personally speaking, I would like to better it in London.
I do a lot of yoga and meditation. It calms my nerves and helps me channelise my energy.
I’ve grown up with Bollywood, and I continue to enjoy it. But boxing remains my passion.
When I walk for a designer, I walk the ramp as Vijender Singh, the boxer. I believe that by doing so, boxing will at least, in some way, get promoted in our entertainment industry. Plus, if cricketers can, why can’t I?
I eat healthy and don’t go by a diet chart. The breakfast is usually heavy, complemented with short frequent meals. My dinner is high on proteins and low on carbohydrates.
I have never thought of a full-fledged career in Bollywood because boxing has never left my mind. But you never know.
I want to compete in the next Olympics. If I go to Rio, it will be my third time, which is a rare feat for an Indian athlete. For me, Olympics is important because it’s the biggest event on earth for a sports person. I hope this time around I come back with a medal.
I love music, and can dance on the desi beats. Punjabi music is my favourite. I listen to artists like Honey Singh. I love his music. I also love watching Bollywood films.
I think God has it written down for me, that without training and working hard you will never achieve desired results. All three times I have had to toil my way into the Olympics. Talking about pressure, well that is something you have to learn to deal with in sports.
An incident that left an impression on me was the 1999 sub-junior national boxing championship held in Calcutta. I had trained extremely hard to get there but got kicked out in the first round itself. ‘If others can win, why can’t you?’ I repeatedly asked myself.
When you’re representing a sport, people are more likely to judge and comment as, unlike other fields, sport permits every viewer to participate to a certain level.
I have prepared myself to be at my peak in London. But in the Olympics, there are so many factors. You need to stay alert all the time, and a lapse of concentration, even for a second, will let you down.
I always try to see the good in everything, and that gives me strength. Even when I lost in the London Olympics quarterfinals, I said to myself, ‘Don’t lose heart, God has his own plans.’ Actually, life just goes on; you have to accept whatever challenge you face and become stronger.
Achievements are precious and timeless, just like the precious metal platinum. And what better way to celebrate milestones in your life than with precious platinum.
As far as action is concerned, our films have been coming up with some great sequences. In fact, I think Hollywood is copying Bollywood by getting their heroes to bash up 15 guys at a time.
I believe, whatever God does, he does it for the good. I always try to look at life like that.