In a promotional event today, Sachin Tendulkar spoke about how coach Ramakant Achrekar made fitness training enjoyable for him and the importance of fitness in prolonging a cricketer’s career. He also discussed how mental strength plays an equally important role in an athlete's career.
While speaking to the media after being named the face of the IDBI Federal Life Insurance Marathons, the master-blaster highlighted the importance of his coach, in making fitness training an enjoyable activity. "All I am trying to tell you here is my coach (Ramakant Achrekar) was instrumental in making me realise that fitness is going to be a key factor. But he made things enjoyable for me. I never once felt that why am I doing this.
"At the end of the day, my coach had to literally interrupt a net session and say, 'That's it, it's too dark, you'll get hurt'. And that's how he would stop our session. I didn't feel like running though after that. That is how I felt I became strong and it's not just about being physically fit," added the 42-year old.
Sachin also noted how fitness came to him naturally. "Fitness is from within. It's not about how you look. What the body is actually able to do. Without any doubt, with more awareness, more knowledge, I think the team is really, really fit," said Tendulkar.
However, the importance of mental strength couldn’t be overstated according to the batting legend. "Once you learn to push the boundaries, then it also makes you mentally strong. Because there have been times where I felt tired while playing international games. But it was the mental strength and training at a young age which sort of I could use and put that into practice," he said.
"So without realising I felt the foundation was becoming more and more solid for me and then after that there were number of marathon innings I played, at school level as well. When both Vinod (Kambli) and I created the world record, I scored 326 not out, bowled little bit and hopped across to play another match because there were two matches going on simultaneously in our school itself. So I went there and scored 178 not out again in that match, followed that with another triple hundred," concluded Sachin, with a beaming smile.
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