Need to be mentally very strong to run marathon: Gopi Thonakal

Virar, Dec 7 (PTI) One has to be mentally very strong to run a marathon, said Indian Army runner Gopi Thonakal on the eve of the Vasai-Virar Mayor's Marathon which will be held here on Sunday.

Gopi had won the Asian marathon title in Dongguan, China in 2017, had qualified for the 2016 Olympics where he finished 25th, achieved 28th position in the 2017 World Championships in London, bettering it to 21st position in the 2019 World Championships in Doha.

'You have to be mentally very strong to run a marathon. I had a passion for running which was fueled further when I joined the Army. The Army Sports Institutehas produced some of the best athletes over the years and it has helped a lot to shape my career,' the 31-year-old said on Saturday.

The Vasai-Virar Mayor's Marathon (IBVVMM) started as a state level event in 2011, coming under the aegis of Athletic Federation of India (AFI) the following year.

It is now one of the country's premier national level running event, offering the highest prize money for Indian athletes, both professional and amateur.

The four timed categories at VVMM are Full Marathon (42.195km), Half Marathon (21.097km), 11 km Open Run, 5 km Open Run and Dhamaal Dhav (4km), according to organisers. PTI COR BNM BNM