In the second post on the series ‘Running in India‘ we take a look at a passionate group of runners from Chennai, who, without any formal setup, went beyond promoting running in Chennai. This was a movement which spread from person to person, and its really caught fire! Here’s their story…
It was just another day in the year 2005 when Vidyuth, Ram Viswanathan (the mentor), Hari (the coach) and KK (ghost runner) ‘ran’ into each other that this movement called ‘ChennaiRunners’ was formed.
Group Website: chennairunners.com
Legend has it that, Ram and Vidyuth, scorching the streets of Chennai every morning came to know about Hari and their common passion for Running. Then the story is that it was actually the fuel belt that Hari wore, that drew KK a lone ranger, to the rest of them …and from then on the streets of Chennai have never been the same again!
Well it was through word of mouth, blogging and KK’s efforts in bringing about awareness, that Chennairunners took its shape. Chennairunners can be best described as ‘a movement born out of passion’
To put it simply these individuals were ‘runners’ alright but it is only when they discovered the ‘joy of belonging’ that they wanted to spread the message. It was this sense of belonging and a need to organize them that brought about the movement. Different individuals with diverse background but one passion led to the formation of this platform.
According to Ram Viswanathan “Running is fun and fitness, bonding and social networking. You learn group dynamics and getting the best out of each other — lessons you carry over into your work“. Harishankar adds his words of wisdom – “You learn to set targets and push your limits, develop physical and mental endurance”.
Now regulars like Senthil Kumar and Karthik Vijayakumar became part of the group and their interaction made them to plan and organize the whole group. Events like ECR (a quarterly event where the Chennairunners organize marathons on the stretch of East Coast Road in Chennai) followed. Now with more than 600 members, over 100 active runners and more than 3 chapters around Chennai, Chennairunners is growing both as an institution and an inspiration. Chennairunners have used the potentials and the eagerness of their members to organize events like ’Extra Miles’ to help aspirant runners.
You can be a part of this movement too! Drop by at www.chennairunners.com … the membership is free!