Sportskeeda is proud to present a brand new series – ‘CXOs on the run’. In this series, we converse with industry leaders, entrepreneurs and other high-profile personalities for whom running is a way of life, and how they manage to find time to pursue doing what they love the most.
Ravi Mondreti, Director of IT giant Dell, is also an accomplished runner and has participated in many runs. The BITS Pilani graduate, and the proud father of two, talks to us about his passion for running and how he prepares for the various runs he participates in. Excerpts from the interview below:
How and when did you first start running?
I started my running about 7-8 years ago. One fine day, I decided to run during my regular morning walk. There was no looking back after that. Since then, I have participated in multiple half marathons and full marathons.
Which was the first run you participated in?
My first run was memorable. It was in the beautiful locales of Auroville. At first, I was nervous and jittery just entering the run. The entire route is through Auroville forest, and it is not your typical road run. The run started off at 5 am and in pitch darkness. They provided torches to find our way through. My run started sedately to ensure that I paced myself, so that I could finish in a decent time. My target time was between 4:30 to 4:45. The terrain of the route was varied with lot of trails, loose sand and a bit of metal road. I slowed down considerably at around the 30 km mark, which is the dreaded runners’ wall, and had to fight a mental battle with myself to just get going. At around 35 km, my legs started fatiguing. I had to hydrate myself on a regular basis and has slowed down to a crawl. However, once I hit the last 4 km stretch, my energy levels picked up and I completed the run successfully with a timing of 4:45 hrs. The feeling was exhilarating and I could not wipe the smile off my face for the next few days.
How do you go about preparing for a run?
In between runs, I typically run regularly for general fitness. Once I decide on an event, I train based on a plan for a period of 8-10 weeks. Hal Higdon training is the one I bank on, and it paid me rich dividends in terms of improvements in running and timings. The training involves running various distances through the week mixed with interval, tempo and hill training. Weekends are for long runs and some cross training. One day of rest is mandatory to recover from the strain. Pre and post-run stretching is absolutely important to avoid injuries and muscle soreness.
Do you follow a diet in preparation of a run?
On a regular basis, I do not follow any specific diet except that I try to eat healthy and drink lots of fluids. Pre and post-run hydration is important. During the last week of training, my consumption of carbs goes up to build up energy reserves in the body
What kind of kit do you use for running?
When your wardrobe has more dry-fit clothes than regular clothes, you know you are into running seriously,which is the case with me. My running kit includes a variety of running shirts and shorts, shoes, ASICS Gel Cumulus, Garmin 305 for pacing and timing, compression socks for feet and calves, a white hat in case there is no shade, electrolyte drinks like gatorade, chocolate & peanut bars for on-the-run hunger.
How often have you participated in the TCS 10k run? Any highlights?
I have participated in all the editions of the TCS 10K. My best timing in this event is 54 minutes.
What are the other runs you participate in?
In the last six months, I ran the Hyderabad full marathon, the Bangalore Ultra and Mumbai Full Marathon.
What other sport do you play or follow?
Other than running, I enjoy cycling. Additionally, I follow football and cricket.
Who is your favourite sportsman?
My favorite sportsman is Roger Federer. I admire him for his skill, grace and ultimately for his sportsmanship
Do you have any message for our readers who wish to start running?
There is no good time or age to start running. I believe in having fun while running and the by-product is good health and energy levels.Published 17 May 2013, 11:52 IST