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04 Jun 2020, Edition - 1787, Thursday

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Need inspiration? Meet this 50-year- old who has done 140+ half marathons across the world in the last 3 years

Indrani Thakurata

Roop Betala a Professional Investment banker and Private Equity Investor, started running in the year 2013 when his son challenged him to run after his 2013 SCMM.  Then, he registered registered him for Thane Hiranandani Marathon, and ever since then Roop Betala has run 105 Half marathon in about 30 Countries and 60 Cities.He has run five Half Marathon in 2013 and in 2014, 2015 and 2016 he ran 27 Half Marathon and thus awarded in 2016  as the Most Consistent Runner’.

His passion has helped him complete a 100 Days Running Challenge in 2015 with 1008 KM and 2016 with 1111.11KM and 2017 with 1008KM. We speak to him about his passion for running, and what keeps him going.

How did it start for you?

Initially it was my son’s challenge which made me run the first Half marathon. Then I realized that it is such a nice thing, so why not continue the same and everything fell in place. Over a period I realized it is not just health but also how I now lead a more disciplined life – going to bed on time getting on time, conserving so much of my energy for the right thing.

Talk about your first running experience and the motivation behind it

The first run and first KM was very tough as I have never run in my life before, as I was more of a bike and car enthusiast. ( Have taken part in various races including the pro formula 1 races). But then I realized if I don’t complete this marathon and go back home without getting that beautiful medal then I would fall in my own eyes and I want to be a role model that my kids look upto. I decided to run, though it was challenge but then I completed the first Half marathon in less than 3 hours.

How does running a marathon help in health and fitness?

Running a marathon is above health and Fitness, like when you run you also spend time with yourself and you can make plan, take decision, learn punctuality, generation of positive energy and pride of accomplishment. So it serves much more than just health.

How do you prepare for a marathon?

Since I run every month on average two Half marathon, thus my preparation is on a daily basis. Running on continuous basis is my practice for the bigger Marathon.

Do you have a daily running schedule or do you prepare only before the event?

I try and run about 5-6 days a week. Since my profession also requires a lot of travel, I miss my runs, however, I recover the same by running in the evening.

What sort of changes have you found in yourself after you started running (physical as well as psychological)?

Physically: I have definitely become more fit and healthy. My BMI is close to average in most of the parameters (age/height).

Psychological: I have become more disciplined in life both personally and professionally. I have now more energy than what I had few years ago thus my travel schedules have become a little easy.

How many marathons do you run in an year.?

As said earlier I run 27 Half Marathon a year. I started running in 2013 and I ran 5 Half Marathon, in 2014, 2015 2016 and 2017 I ran 27 Half marathon. Apart from this I also run some 10K, Ultras and few charity runs. Also do 100 Days Challenge every year with about 1008 KM running in 100 days on daily basis uninterrupted.

Do you follow some diet regime?

I try not to eat junk food. But then, Monday is my cheat day when I don’t mind indulging in some junk food rest I don’t follow strict diet regime.

What would you want to say to those who want to begin running marathons?

For beginners – my advice will be just learn to get up from the bed and go to  the shoe rack, that’s it- rest everything will follow. If you can make up your mind and do that, you can achieve anything. Run with just one motto: Run Forever – Fun Forever.

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