By Shatabdi Chakrabarti

MEET the first Indian couple to win medals in international bodybuilding championships

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Videographer / director: Shams Qari
Producer: Shatabdi Chakrabarti, Ruby Coote
Editor: Marcus Cooper

Married couple, Borun and Mamota Devi Yumnam from New Delhi, are dedicating their lives to becoming India’s top bodybuilding couple.

And with over 28 awards between them, they’re taking the sport by storm.

Borun, 39, has been competing for over 20 years, whilst his wife began her bodybuilding career in 2012 - after having three children.

Borun told Barcroft TV: "I was about 16 when I competed for the first time and became a champion in the Sub-Junior category for Mr. Manipur. Thats how my journey started.

"I kept going till 2016 I won 16-17 of Nationals and 3 time Mr. Asia."

Ensuring he was training six days a week, five hours a day, and maintaining his strict diet of chicken, eggs, boiled vegetables and fruit, was Mamota.

The two had met at a modelling show in Manipur, Mamota was one of the model and Borun was invited for a bodybuilding appearance. It was love at first sight for Borun, and he proposed a couple of months later.

Mamota, 39, said: “From a very young age, I would always want to do things that nobody had ever done. But I had never thought of bodybuilding, especially because in India, it is not meant for women.

"After we got married, I got busy with the house and then our kids. But because my husband is in the sport, I also started gymming, just to be fit. And then one day I decided to get a six pack like Borun’s. Thats how it started."

With three young children to take care of, it wasn’t easy for Mamota to devote all her time into her training.

She said: “Our friends in the gym would be surprised at my abilities and postures. And because I had taken care of Borun’s diet, I also knew what diets to follow. And then I participated in the National Championship in 2012.

“In the beginning I would think how would I get on the stage wearing these costumes in front of so many people! And because I had to train and travel for the competitions, I felt bad because I couldn’t spend my whole day with the children anymore.

"Over the years, my face has also changed and people in the family would point that out. But all that doesn’t matter now.”

Borun added: “Mamota did this all by the power of her own will. Her first appearance, she came third place, bronze medal. So step by step, she started her career like that and now she has won around six medals, more than me at international level.

"We are the only Indian couple to have won awards in the International arena. And I am very proud of her.”

Mamota and Borun have won 28 awards between them and travel and compete in international championships together.

They also train younger athletes and bodybuilders and have become icons in the sport.

“Bodybuilding has given me everything and I can say that bodybuilding is my life,” Borun said.