Tejaswin Shankar: Every decathlete has some totka to stay hydrated

Tejaswin Shankar discussed his showing at the Inter-state Athletics Meet in Bhubaneswar, the road to the 2024 Paris Olympics, his ambitions in sports and how he balances life away from it in the Sportstar Podcast.

Published : Jun 24, 2023 06:17 IST , Chennai - 2 MINS READ

India’s Tejaswin Shakar in action in Birmingham 2022.
India’s Tejaswin Shakar in action in Birmingham 2022. | Photo Credit: REUTERS/Phil Noble

India’s Tejaswin Shakar in action in Birmingham 2022. | Photo Credit: REUTERS/Phil Noble

Decathlete Tejaswin Shankar, in the latest episode of ‘What Google Won’t Tell You’ podcast, explains how athletes deal with dehydration using certain totkas (home remedies).

“In general, you lose a lot of water. The body is made of 70 percent water. So when the water goes out, the muscle starts twitching and cramp starts coming in. Then the functioning of your body starts depleting, and however energised you are feeling, you will start feeling low. Every decathlete has some totka to make sure they stay hydrated,” Tejaswin says.

“A lot of this is placebo,” the 24-year-old continues. “One would say there is some science that hasn’t been discovered. I use dry mustard. I’d spoken to the coach, and he said if you cramp at night, add soap to your legs, wear tights and go to sleep because something with the bicarbonates in the soap. I’ve no idea if he was joking or serious, but I’ve never had cramps the next day, so I continue to do this.”

Listen to the full episode here. Click here for the full transcript.

Speaking on the extreme heatwave in Bhubaneswar, Tejaswin said, “The heat is a separate story. My mistake was that right before the 100m, I was doing the American style warm-up - 400 and 800 rounds. There, the weather is cold. There is a sheet with all these checklists for warm-ups.

“When I got to the start line, the guy next to me fouled. From my nose, I noticed there was blood. What just happened. The event hadn’t started, and I was already heat-exhausted. Then I realised that this is India and I have to warm up accordingly. Have to adapt to the situation. That doesn’t affect just that one event but the long jump as well. By the time I got to the long jump, I was gassed out because the turnover time is so quick.”

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