Day 29… This Kind Of Focus (July 15)

“It takes time for everybody to get used to it.  You are here all day every day, and you are not in very comfortable conditions.  In terms of pain and tiredness.   Somehow you get used to it and it is easier.”

Ananda-Lahari is describing that it takes the runners sometimes weeks to get used to the rhythm, flow, and intensity of the race.   As someone who is now spending his 14th straight summer at the race you might think he might find it just a little easier each time, but he doesn’t.  It is an impossible thing to run 3100 miles, and it is impossible to spend 18 hours continuously moving around and around the block, but sometimes of course the quiet miracles do happen here. A miracle of self transcendence now well into its 22nd summer.

photo by Jowan

Not under a glare of light, not before a great audience of expectant viewers, but in the way that real champions do when faced with uncommon adversity.  Set steadfast aim towards the task and use all the strength of mind, heart and body that you have. Then keep plunging ever deeper within, to find even more strength and resolve to carry on to the summit of perfection.

“To me it seems that we can solve many problems when we are strong mentally.  There are some tips that can help you not to suffer here.”  Ananda-Lahari then tells me how he has helped himself considerably during hot weather by simply using coconut oil on his skin.  “I am very sensitive to the sun.  I get burned very easily.”

Towards the end of our talk I ask him if he gets familiar with many of the different people who come around the course at different times of the day and night.  “It is not like I want to cut off the outer world, but I take it as though I am running a marathon, but I would like to take it as if I were running 100 meter sprint.  I would like to have this kind of focus on the race.”

“I am not there yet but I like the idea, and I like to keep getting closer to that idea.  You are really running the race and this is all that you are focusing on.  To be calm, quiet, and relaxed and fully committed to the race.  I like the idea of going in silence.”

The board at the Start of Day 29 *The totals may not be accurate…. Magic number is 1668 *

Very early this morning heavy thundershowers came through

The medical tent partially collapsed

The rain comes and goes

Vajra wiping down the massage table

Sometimes you can see ghosts

William comes

Still early

Vajra and Kobi

Rupantar does his daily video

Surasa arrives

William has his morning snack

Feet ready for treatment

Ushika here Smarana arriving



Arriving first counter shift

Vasu is here

Start of Day 29

Wet start

Vasu did 66 miles

He now has 1950 miles

He leads Kobi by 47 miles

He stops regularly to stretch

Having a great race


Counters and helpers

Kobi ran 63 miles

He now has 1903 miles

With Oscar his crew chief who brought him a Coffee Coolata when he arrived this morning

Singing and dancing in the rain

Having another good day

Sopan did 62 miles

He now has 1699 miles

He is 8 miles ahead of Ushika


Ushika did 62 miles

He now has 1691 miles

With Oscar and Mario

Running well


Surasa did 60 miles

She now has 1684 miles ….7 miles behind Ushika

With Vishvarupani

Making an ice bag


Kaneenika did 60 miles

She now has 1634 miles

Laila is her early helper and she has just received emails from Sahishnu


William did 57 miles

He now has 1617 miles

“A man goes into a library and asks for a book on shelves.  The librarian answers, they all are.”

With Alan

Great team

Alan going over the data


Smarana did 42 miles

He now has 1614 miles

A great champion

In the world’s longest race


A short visit to the race

Ananda-Lahari did 49 miles

He now has 1563 miles


Mischa a big fan of the race stops by to visit

“Can you tell me when the action starts.  Been here all morning and haven’t seen a thing.”

Sahishnu’s weekly report

Click to Play:


Today’s Poem read by Mirka

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Poem Mirka

Enthusiasm Awakeners

Click to Play:


The doubting mind
Focuses on ignorance-night.
The aspiring heart
Focuses on wisdom-delight.

2 thoughts on “Day 29… This Kind Of Focus (July 15)”

  1. I am trying not to think about the enormity of this race, it seems all so impossible to do, whether someone is on first place or so-called last place. Each runner runs an everage of 90 miles at least every day, every day, every day…

    I heard this joke yesterday: A caller on the phone sneeses and sneeses. Wife: “Who is it?” Husband: “A cool caller!”

  2. Utpal, what a wonder work you are bringing to us every day! I wish I could be there… but with our oneness hearts and your blogs, we can get closer and breathe in the air and inspiration of this race of the beyond. From the depth of my heart, I thank you!

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