Be A Bumblebee

Madhur Kotharay

Madhur Kotharay nearing the finish line


Its a tough challenge to run a Marathon. But how about doing 52 Marathons in 52 weeks? Hmmm, maybe a professional athlete could pull it off. But how about somebody who tries this while holding a regular day job? A friend of ours, Madhur Kotharay, did just that. We believe that no more than a handful achieved this milestone in 2011. We are reproducing his e-mail below with permission as it holds a valuable lesson for all of us:

“Got the 52nd today in Lonavala. The day of deliverence! :-)

Spent time with a veteran experienced runner today, who said that the reason why nobody on the serious runners’ discussion groups even talked about this was because mine was a ridiculous goal to start with.

A good marathon runner runs 3-4 marathons a year. An tough, outlier goal for him is M12-M12, i.e. 12 marathons in 12 months. The difficulty with this is you have to be ultra-fit throughout the year, as you have to do one every month.

This expert shared with me that for 2011, ten of Mumbai’e elite and renowned (amongst running fraternity) runners had set the M12-M12 goal. They did one marathon every month till June but by November, every single one of these 10 top runners had dropped out of the goal for various reasons.

I, on the other hand, am a pathetic runner :-( I take more than 5 hours (usually 6) to complete a marathon. Plus, I take part in at most 1-2 marathons a year. So when an untrained guy like me sets a goal for 52 marathons, the veterans found it not even worth commenting.

In conclusion, either I didn’t know how to give up on my goal or I didn’t know that it was an impossible goal. So I kept chugging like “the Little Engine that Could”.

Apparently, bio-mechanically it can be proven that a Bumblebee cannot fly. But the Bumblebee doesn’t know that and so it keeps on flying. Probably, I ‘bumbled’ my way through this whole thing. :-)

Sometimes, it is a good idea to not know that you are incapable of doing something.

Attaching some photos of the finale today!”

After some research on Google we found only two other cases of 52 marathons in 52 weeks in 2011. Kevin Betts and Tristan Miller. If you know any others who did this please let us know so we can acknowledge them here.

“It always seems impossible until its done.” Nelson Mandela

You may also like: Never Give Up Hope

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