A Day in the Life of... Dzinara Alimbekava
The women's relay at the Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang brought an unexpected victory and Gold medals to the national team of Belarus. For two experienced girls, Darya Domracheva and Nadezhda Skardino, who retired after the last season, the 2018 Olympics, as well as the Olympic awards, were not their first. But for Dzinara Alimbekava and Iryna Kryuko, who participated in the Games for the first time, the Olympic podium was also the first in their career. Moreover, for one of the athletes, they became special for one more reason, after the OWG in Korea, 22-year old Alimbekava, became one of the youngest female Olympic champions in biathlon history!
Preparation after Surgery
After a successful season, in May 2018, Alimbekava had surgery on her left shoulder joint and now she is recovering, preparing for the new starts. Every athlete has different ways of rehabilitation as well as time for recovery. But what unites all these athletes is the desire to start training as soon as possible. The young Belarusian biathlete decided to share a day from her life and tell about her preparation after the surgery, "Now I'm going through rehabilitation, I have a bandage and my training are not as diverse and interesting as I would like them to be."
Training, camps and constant travel did not give the athlete an opportunity to have a pet, she was dreaming about for a long time. This year, after an Olympic season, the girl gave herself a present. "I fulfilled my old dream and got myself a little decorative rabbit and now decided to take him with me to our training camp in Raubichi! Meet my Barney, the breed, "Dutch"; he is just over three months old. If before my mornings started with exercises, now, before going outside, I need to feed my friend and play with him a little, and only after that I can go for a morning run."
After the surgery, Alimbekava cannot train at full strength, so, for now, she is working according to her own program because she needs to take care of her shoulder, but at the same time gradually get into shape. "Unfortunately, during exercises and training I cannot do drills with my hands, so I load only my legs and work on the balance." But, despite this, the young athlete is optimistic; she does not despair and believes in the best. Alimbekava follows doctor’s directions and recommendations, who advise her to take it slowly.
Dzinara takes care of her pet, and only after that, she makes herself a delicious, hearty breakfast that will help her to gain strength for the day. Although Alimbekava understands she should not hurry, but inside the young Olympic champion really wants to get strength as soon as possible and start a full training. "Today, according to the plan, we have a treadmill test; all girls do it on the rollerskis, but it would be dangerous for me to do so with one hand, therefore, I have to walk with a ski pole. This is something new and I want to know more about my functional willingness at the moment."
After training, a little tired, Dzinara returns to the hotel for lunch. Now, this is also a small challenge for her because for the moment she can only do things with her right hand, and for the left-hander, which the athlete is, it is not very convenient. But Alimbekava gradually gets used to this discomfort.
Lunch is over and it is time to go for her daily bandaging and shoulder rehabilitation procedures. After that, unfortunately, there is not much time left for rest before the next training session.
Missed My Rifle
On this day, for the first time after the winter season, Alimbekava starts shooting which is still incomplete: "For now, I can do only prone shooting with/from a wooden block… as when I was a child. But I am happy even with this because I really missed my rifle. The results are encouraging, and the hand does not bother me; what could be better!"
Another training day comes to an end. In the evening, after dinner, the Belarussian takes her rabbit and goes for a walk with him. "He is very happy and shows his qualities as a jumper and rodent. And I like to watch him and take pictures. We have fun because the rabbits are very cute and funny."
"So one more day of my training and recovery camp has flown, I wish everyone a good mood, interesting moments in life, do not get sick and be happy!"
The Biathlon Family also wishes Dzinara a speedy recovery and new victories.
Photos: Christian Manzoni, Mariya Osolodkina, Dzinara Alimbekava