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Cyclone of the Week: Maya Lama

Senior Maya Lama has been running with the Mills Cross Country team for two seasons. (Kurt Loeffler)

Senior Maya Lama made her mark as Cyclone of the Week through her outstanding improvements on the Cross Country team, as well her leadership skills on and off the track.

Originally from Kathmandu, Nepal, Lama leads the Cross Country team as co-captain, in addition to being a Student Athlete Advisory Committee member, where she acts as a liaison between the Cross Country team and APER, and majoring in Economics.

Lama has been keen to maintain an active and healthy lifestyle. She began running Cross Country at Merritt College three years ago. Lama transferred to Mills shortly afterward and has now begun her second season with the Mills Cross Country team.

Between the time the Cross Country team held their first meet on Sept. 8 and the time they held their third on Sept. 22, Lama made vast improvements.

“Maya knocked one minute and twelve seconds off of her average per mile time, which is a huge improvement,” Cross Country Coach Cindy Olavarri said. “As co-captain of the Cross Country team, she has been a leader on and off the trail motivating her teammates during training, assisting me with Mills Invitational preparations and clean-up, and organizing team outings.”

Cross Country is a sport that tests your endurance and will, and Lama said her motivation to do well is heavily influenced by her peers.

“My teammates and my coach push me to do my best every day,” Lama said. “ They have helped me achieve this level of improvement. Running is a very mental sport that tests your patience and will to the core. It will make you a stronger person, both physically and mentally.”

Lama’s genuine love for the sport also plays a huge role in her motivation.

“I love running,” Lama said. “Cross Country is indeed a very tiring sport, but the feeling you get after you run is one of the most amazing gifts you can give to yourself. I just hold on to that wonderful feeling of literally being grounded and getting that energy from Earth. I also visualize running through the finish line at a race. It keeps me motivated throughout every practice and prepares me for the upcoming meets.”

In addition to Lama’s mental preparation prior to her meets, she also takes extensive measures to ensure her health is always at its best.

“I try to eat every four hours during the day,” Lama said. “In every meal I try to incorporate some sort of protein and carb. I carry my water bottle everywhere and stay hydrated. Getting eight hours of sleep would be ideal, but because of my busy schedule you will find me taking a power nap at the Mary Atkins Lounge any given day.”

Between academics, sports and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, Lama finds a great amount of support through the graduating Class of 2013 and the community of commuters at Mills.

“I am an Economics major with a Public Policy minor,” Lama said. “I am planning to get into the 4+1 program. After that I will be going to law school. My plan is to become a lawyer in next five years and start my own practice. I am thankful to all my Mills sisters aside from my Cross Country teammates who have walked with me and encouraged me to push hard every day. I really wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for all of their
continued support.”