Jaya Mahesh is walking global pageant runways to put Coimbatore on the map
Jaya Mahesh is not new to the spotlight. From winning the title of Mrs Coimbatore in 2004 and Mrs India Earth in 2016, the 45-year-old’s latest achievement on the runway comes from the Mrs Globe Classic pageant where she was the runner-up and won the title of Mrs Photogenic. A fitness and wellness coach, her body sculpting classes are a result of research over 25 years in the industry and her own weight-loss journey of shedding 60 kilos post-pregnancy. The newly crowned Mrs Indian Ocean Classic is back in the city and can’t wait to get back to her counselling and fitness sessions.
Excerpts from the interview.
How did you get into pageants?
Honestly, my daughter and niece were the ones who signed me up for the pageants. I have always been one to want to push myself forward and see how much I could achieve. I’ve never wanted to be one among the crowd. When you look at a pageant from the outside, you think that all you need to do is look pretty and groomed. Only once you’re part of it, do you realise how hard these women work.
How different were Mrs India and Mrs Globe pageant experiences?
Both the pageants had their own share of preparation and training. Yes, you have similar questions and answers and talent rounds. But, for me, my biggest take away in terms of experience was the confidence I gained. When I took part in Mrs India, many of my fellow contestants kept asking where Coimbatore was. Hearing ‘We’ve never heard of the city’ was commonplace. And for the Mrs Globe pageant, I had a chance to represent the whole country.
What is your life hack for women who are looking to get into the fitness and beauty industry?
You are responsible for your body, mind and soul. There is always pressure to be perfect, but the question that I have is ‘perfect for whom?’. The only person you are answerable to is you. You alone set your standards. Another thing is: always stay hydrated and stretch. (laughs)
There are always new fitness trends in the market. What are your thoughts?
Good health and fitness are not about size-zero or the ability to perform certain exercises. Neither is it the absence of sickness. If you really want to assess your health, then you need to look at your overall health, which would mean mental, emotional and physical health. In my classes, I follow a three-fold approach—counselling, a sensible diet (no crash diets) and muscle manipulation.
What's on your bucket list for 2018?
Some adventure sports, maybe. I held the Go Karting championship title for three years, but then an injury and failing eyesight did not let me continue. I think I've gathered some new found courage after travelling alone to Palm Springs for the pageant.