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“I sit in class with wet hair”

“I sit in class with wet hair”

Photographer:Fotograaf: Joey Roberts

The seven sins of triathlete Maya Kingma
  • Greed. I’d rather call myself eager. I always want to win. In daily life I’m not greedy at all. I can be very happy with the little things. My gear has to be good, not expensive or beautiful; that’s the way I was raised. My sunglasses don’t have to be from Oakley. Triathlon is an expensive sport. You need a wetsuit, a bike, running shoes and proper coaching. Fortunately I have sponsors, and the national triathlon association is very generous.
  • Gluttony. As an athlete I try to eat healthily and watch my protein and iron intake, but I don’t weigh everything I eat. My body weight and body composition – fat, muscle mass and water – are well-balanced when I train a lot. I think everyone should allow themselves to let go of their diet every once in a while. The Dutch selection gave me six chocolate bars for my birthday. They’ll be gone by next month. But never before a training session. The blood should go to the muscles, not the stomach. Sometimes I’m too ‘gluttonous’ with my training. Partly because of that I have a calf bone injury right now.
  • Lust. I once was on the Facebook page Triathlon Babes. I got over 600 likes. It was nice, but a shame at the same time. The attention should focus on the sport, not on looks. I’m not promiscuous; I have a boyfriend. Before a competition all the focus is on the upcoming race: exploring the trail and getting enough rest. [Sniggers] After the race sex is not a problem.
  • Envy. I love to win gold medals, but if I don’t deserve them, I’m not jealous. I give swimming lessons and that’s hard sometimes now that I’m injured. I just want to jump in and train with them. Originally I’m a swimmer, not a runner. I can be ‘jealous’ of athletes who run better and who are more resistant to the shock load of running. But I’m getting better at that. On the other hand, I am a good swimmer.
  • Sloth. I come from an active family. I prefer giving a swimming lesson over watching Netflix at home. But when my boyfriend and I are relaxing on the couch after a tough training session, I want him to get our drinks. On rest days I usually go to the university. I’m pretty laidback about cleaning, but even when my room is messy, I always know where all my stuff is.
  • Wrath. I don’t get angry very quickly. My mother is the same; she has a lot of patience too. When I lose, I’m mostly mad at myself. I should have trained harder or prepared better. If I were to discover that someone had been doping I’d get really angry, but fortunately I’ve never experienced that. As a top athlete you set an example to others.
  • Pride. Realistic is a better word. But sometimes I overestimate how much my body can take. During a training session I often know that I’m asking too much of myself, but I push on anyway. I am vain though. When it comes to sports galas or going out, I want to look nice. But when I have a class in between two training sessions, I sit in class with wet hair.

Maya Kingma, 22, master in Cognitive Neuroscience, born in Breda, lives in Sittard

Trains about 20 hours a week, member of student triathlon association Ferro Mosae and part of the selection for the Tokyo Olympics. Training for the World Championships in 2018 and the Olympics in 2020

Best performances to date: 14th in the World Triathlon Series in Leeds, 9th at the Junior World Championships 2013 and multiple-time World Champion in open water swimming

This is a series about students who sport at the highest level



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