Rahul Verghese – From being an accidental runner to becoming a running Icon!

He runs and he inspire others to run! Rahul Verghese is an avid marathoner who began his journey on a cold winter day in Chicago in 2000, and has now taken a plunge into the world of running for the rest of his life. A veteran of 50 marathons, Rahul strongly believes that anyone can start running at any age, any weight and with any ailments. 

Rahul has long quit from his corporate job to start the most popular running community in India, Running and Living, with a motive to infect millions of people with the Runner’s High and to get marketing folks to connect with target audience in a fun and infectious way. Today, Running and Living is organizing marathons across the length and breadth of country and helping several amateur and professional runners to adopt to a running led healthy lifestyle. Rahul Verghese has shared his story with us: 

What got you hooked up to Running?

I am an accidental runner. I started running in Chicago while posted there, during my 1st winter when I bought a treadmill to kill time in the dreary suburban winter there with not a soul in sight and darkness by 5 pm. I then at the end of the Winter realised I was running 30 minutes non stop and I felt like a king. Then I signed up for the Chicago marathon that Oct and got hooked onto running while training for the marathon. 

Why do you think people of today’s generation should take up running immediately?

For youngsters because they will look good and attractive, and will give them more energy to enjoy life when it matters the most. 

For 30-40’s – to make new friends, network, have a blast like never before and get to believe in yourself again. 

For 40-60’s – realise that this is the magic potion to get your cholesterol out of the way, blood sugar managed, and yourself de-stressed. 

For the 60 plus – to realise that you are really young again. 

How has life changed for you after founding Running and Living?

It’s changed totally – financially tighter, finally having to work, ecstatic to see the smile and joy on runners faces at the finish lines of our runs, and totally delighted to see people graduate from walkers to joggers to runners to evangelists.

What kind of response have you received for Running and Living?

Great when we do good things, and a kick in the butt when we slip up. Its totally transparent which is great and it helps keep us straight and innovative on the experience as we work with a variety of different partners across 11 states of the country.

What is your personal goal or dream now, after having participated in numerous marathons around the world?

My personal goals were three which I set out after my 2nd marathon in 2002 which was also in Chicago, post shaving off 42 minutes from my time- run 50 marathons – done this year ending with the Everest Base Camp Marathon, Run one in each continent- Antarctica is left, Qualify for Boston – planning on 2017 for that. 

How many miles you generally clock in a week?

Very little and erratic at the moment with our own events consuming a lot of time every weekend –  but otherwise when I get into training it is 35 to 50 miles a week.

Anything else that you want to share with our readers?

You can start running at any age, any weight and with any ailments – you just need to start gradually, follow a schedule, and realise that you will always have someone running faster than you- the comparison is with what you were doing yesterday. You may be walking and jogging today and that is great from what you were doing yesterday. Or you may be essentially walking since that is what you do every day – but now you also ‘run’ 50m which is more than you have ever done in your forseeable past.

Celebrate each small win because you are your own chief cheer leader – and Just remember – NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE. 

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