Rahul Verghese is the founder of Running and Living, “a marketing company with a passion for running.” Their goal is to get 200 million Indians running: man , woman and child. Their marketing goal? Let’s talk about that later, shall we?
When did you start running? What was your first race? How many races have you completed so far? Can you break it down by distances?
I started running in December 2000 and ran my 1st Marathon in Oct 2001 in Chicago. Have done 54 Marathons and Ultra marathons across 6 Continents so far.
You’ve written and published a book, Unleash Your Potential. (I haven’t read it.) What’s it about?
My book – “Running And Living – unleash your potential” is about Running And Life and the several parallels and learnings between them. It’s about the multiplicity of impact points that running can have on you as a person and fire you up with passion, get you to start dreaming, and then going on to living your dream, whatever it may be.
Lots of lessons from Running that I incorporate into my daily life – read the book – Running And Living 🙂
Have you ever not completed a race? When and why?
I have had one DNF at a 50km trail run in Faridabad. I had not trained as required and paid the price with getting cramps and opting out at around the 40km mark. Big learning that like on Wall Street you are only as good as your last quarter.
Have you run races injured or sick? What’s your advice to runners concerning it?
I have never run a race sick, I have run a Chicago marathon post hernia surgery in 2003 and a San Francisco Marathon post a fall on my back. I took it really easy in both and kept a strict watch on listening to my body. I never take pain killers as that would mask any signals I need to listen to. I would suggest that if you are sick or injured – run a shorter distance if possible, else run much slower than planned – or change your objective to having fun – carry a camera, cheer people on – or else just opt out of the run and perhaps volunteer or spectate. There is always another run to participate in when you are back to normal.
Where do you usually train? How often?
There is no usual place that I train – the usual place that I train is – Outdoors – wherever I am. I am in the Himalaya this week and I will be running at around 12000 feet. But its not training for some event. I am just running to enjoy myself and be out in nature.
I came across a picture of you holding a guitar in one of your Facebook posts? Are you also a musician? What instruments can you play?
I like playing the Guitar and Harmonica and singing 🙂
You’re married. What’s your spouse’s name? What does she do? Any children? What are they doing?
My wife Jamuna runs on and off. She’s a banker and now consulting with PWC. My daughter Diya is working with VISA and my daughter Naina is studying economics and psychology, with a year more of college to go.
If you were to do it all over again, what would you change? Why?
I wouldn’t change anything if I was to live life over again. I have enjoyed every moment so far and will continue to do so.
Part II of this interview will follow when Rahul Verghese returns from the Himalayas on May 10.
Disclosure: The interview was conducted via email. Answers are published as-is except for spell-check.