“Running isn’t rocket science—you’re wasting your energy if you devote too much thought to it.”
When you run alone on dangerous roads of Delhi for 15 hours straight, in torrid heat of June for absolutely no reason, you get a lot of time to think. Think crazy! “Inspired Idiot”, as Gaurav defines himself, has run nine marathons, seven ultramarathons and a few tens of half marathons –including last seven editions of Delhi Half Marathon.
It was one sticky morning in fall of 2006 when Gaurav started running as a casual runner that pumped the first shot of adrenaline which refused to stop ever since. Still discovering the dimensions of teenage, it didn’t take long for him to get hooked to the marathon bug. With little experience of long distance running over past two years, he has scaled entire length and breadth of the capital on various occasions during his training runs.
Youngest in country to finish a 100 mile race, Gaurav, describes Bhati Lakes 100 2011 and Mandwa-Pune 250 km/48 hour run as the marathons closest to his heart. Where running through the deserted forests of Bhati mines on roughest terrain with thorny bushes spread about the lakes with little wildlife, Gaurav conquered 160km long GR Bhati Lakes Ultramarathon last year, one among toughest footraces in India, with just three other runners, on the other hand, the coast of Konkan on hot and very humid day to the misty tops of Tamhini, he failed to conquer the entire distance but soaked in his longest distance of unforgiving pain and pride to take with him on one of the prettiest and toughest Konkan ride.
Like many others, barefoot running interests him more. Though still in transitional phase, Gaurav can boast of three successful barefoot half marathon finishes -two in past successive editions of Delhi’s Mawana Marathon. Self supported running in odd weather during unearthly hours of day is what characterizes this ultrarunner aspiring to reach his holy grail -Badwater Ultramarathon, the world’s toughest footrace and a secret dream of 6633 Ultra.
Gaurav is also the race director of India’s longest road race, The Taj Mahal Marathon (222 km) and a prime convict for Blue Battle Rishikesh-Uttarkashi 135 mile Ultra. Se La 100 is another project in its primordial stage.
“I have enjoyed 100% of the failures I’ve seen in my life. Yes, they piss you off, but I like the zest of learning and implementation after that, in process of being a better human. Failure is not a CRIME, but lack of EFFORT is.”