Adventure is a stress buster for most of us but for Romil Barthwal it is beyond that. Having made Hyderabad his home for years together, Romil started his adventure journey with his first marathon with Hyderabad Runners.
“I had registered for half marathon which is for 21kms. And on the race day I was given a blue bib. Soon, I was surprised to see everyone wearing a different colour bib. Red bib meant half marathon and blue meant full marathon which is 42kms. I requested the organisers to change but was denied. Then I decided that I’d run half marathon and decide whether I will do full based on my condition. But to my surprise I completed full marathon,” shares Romil.
That being just the beginning, Romil longed for more challenging adventure in his life which led him to Boston marathon. “Getting qualified for Boston marathon itself is a task as the selection process is very difficult. I took about 2 to 3 years to reach there. But I made to it overcoming all the hurdles,” says Romil.
High Altitude Ultra Marathon
“This event happened from Sumur to Leh via Khardungla pass which is highest motorable road. The cut-off time to finish the run is 20 hours for the distance of 111km and if someone takes longer he is disqualified. I completed the run in 14hours 57 minutes which was the first time ever. I bet the previous record of someone finishing in 15 hours 30 minutes. Also, I was the first record holder of the non-ladakhi category,” shares Romil.
Talking about his training experience, Romil shares,”It takes hundreds of hours of training for a person to run 20 hours continuously. We used to run from Secunderabad to Gachibowli at around 2oclock in the morning and go back. So I had to go through 8 to 10 hours of training on Sundays and for long month during peak off season.”
Scaling Mount Everest
Romil received training for a year at Leh, Ladakh, and Kargail while staying away from family at the same time, Romil scaled up the Mount Everest with his team of 14. “We trained in the most difficult conditions to be exposed to those heights, the feeling of breathlessness etc which can replicate the situation at Mt. Everest. We used to train for 2 to 3 days without food and also encountered with avalanche. We also used to run long lengths like 50kms in Leh during our training. This rigorous training helped us scale the Mt. Everest without anyone in our team getting injured.”
Like adventure being in the blood, Romil now looks forward to take his 13-year-old daughter who has also received mountaineering training to Mount Kilimanjaro or the Everest base camp.
Other than these, Romil received month training for river rafting and is now a white water rafting course expert. Also, he has also done bungee jumping, dualthalons, paramotor, para sailing, para gliding and paratrooping too.
Romil is conducting on a inspirational talk on November 10th at Guruswamy Center, East Marredpally from 6.30 PM.