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.
Today, we are in conversation with Thomas Bobby Philip, or Bobby, as he is affectionately called. Bobby, who is the Global Capability Development Manager and Nokia Siemens Networks, is also an accomplished barefoot runner, having participated in several marathons. Here he talks to us about running, and everything related. Excerpts from the conversation below:
How and when did you first start running?
I started running about four years ago with my daughter, as I was helping her to prepare for her school sports event. We started with 250 metres and progressed to one kilometre in 7 days. She stopped running, but the progress motivated me to continue forever. Later, I was introduced to Nike Run Club where I got the opportunity to associate with the Running Veterans.
Which was the first marathon you participated in?
My first marathon was the Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon (SCMM) in Jan 2011. The objective was to complete the marathon successfully and under four hours. Mumbaikars just rock; the cheer and support provided throughout the route gave me the energy to complete my first marathon in 3 hrs 49 mins. I was treated like a celebrity after the run.
How do you go about preparing for a marathon?
I train with The Pacemakers group. Tuesdays are Interval runs, Thursdays are Tempo, Hill or Fartlek run, and weekends are Endurance runs at various predefined speeds.
Do you follow a diet in preparation of a marathon?
I love my food. Breakfast is roti with chicken / beef, two eggs, milk with raisin and almond muesli. Lunch is rice with chicken, and dinner is rice with fish. Also, I have a couple of fruits and fresh juices in between the meals.
What kind of kit do you use for running?
I run barefoot. I wear a dry-fit Tee with Nike Pro Combat shorts. I use Enerzal to hydrate myself. I don’t use any additional supplements.
How often have you participated in the TCS 10k run? Any highlights?
2013 is my fifth TCS 10K run in Bangalore. Running for the cause of girl children gives me a feel of fulfillment. My pace has consistently improved every year, which further motives me train for further runs. My first barefoot run was at TCS 10K in 2012 and will continue the same way this year too.
What are the other runs you participate in?
I have participated in the SCMM, Bangalore Ultra, Hyderabad Marathon and Kaveri Trail Marathon. I usually run only one marathon in a year, but this year, I am planning to run two marathons.
Who is your favourite sportsman?
I admire Haile Gebrselassie for his winning attitude and his contribution to the society, and my coach Mr. Kothandapani for his humble nature, maturity and guidance to all runners.
Do you have any message for our readers who wish to start running?
Consistent & disciplined training will help you achieve the goal. Start simple, run easy & enjoy the run. As you improve, you build up your confidence to perform better. This leads to self-satisfaction and gives a high sense of accomplishment.