Neeraj Chopra has become a sensation in India since he won the country its first-ever gold in athletics. He won the men’s javelin throw event with a best distance of 87.58m to bag independent India’s first athletics medal. He became only the second Indian ever to win an individual gold at the Olympics. All of India is singing praise of the boy with the golden arm because of whom the Indian national anthem was played in an Olympic stadium after 13 years.
The evidence of Neeraj’s shooting popularity is that his social media followers have increased by over a million within just 24 hours of winning the gold medal in Tokyo. Before the event, Neeraj reportedly had about 100k followers on Instagram while at the time of publishing the article, he had 2.6 million followers.
On Sunday, Neeraj took to Twitter to share with his fans the feeling of being an Olympic champion and thanked everyone for all the “support and blessings”. He added that the moment is going to stay with him all his life.
“Still processing this feeling. To all of India and beyond, thank you so much for your support and blessings that have helped me reach this stage. This moment will live with me forever,” he tweeted.
In an exclusive interview with CNN-News18, Neeraj also shared why he avoided eating Sushi despite being in Tokyo for the Olympics. “I just could not take a chance with anything new. What if I had an upset stomach? So I just stuck to my regular diet,” says Neeraj.
Regular diet on on match days is anything with low fat. Grilled chicken breast, eggs, fruits and salad. A recent addition is salmon.
The Desi boy has stayed away from Sushi but hopes his mother in panipat has his favourite Choorma ready. “It is a simple dish of roti, ghee and sugar. “I travel so much that I don’t miss home food so much now, but there is nothing like ghar ka khana.”
Neeraj has lost count of the number of interviews he has done since winning his historic gold but he knew exactly how much sleep he has got since then – 2.5 hours. It is the one thing he is looking forward to the most apart from his mother’s choorma when he lands in India on Monday.