Gul Panag's on the run

Jan 14, 2012, 07:40 IST | Shakti Shetty

Actress is all set to join the Mumbai Marathon tomorrow

Actress is all set to join the Mumbai Marathon tomorrow

Gul Panag is a familiar face on the marathon circuit. In fact, she's the only Bollywood actress who regularly participates be it in Goa, Delhi, Bangalore, Mumbai and even internationally. She explains her need to run...

You must be excited to participate in the marathon?
This will be the ninth edition of the event and I've participated every single year since 2004. What I love most about it is being a part of so much positivity together, the collective high that comes with people who are so filled with positive energy it is incredible! So yes, I'm thrilled.

Do you plan to cover the entire 42 kms, or have you set a target for yourself?
No. My aim is to complete the half marathon (21 kms) as usual.  Moreover, I've completed 16 half-marathons in the last nine years. But I'd like to see me improve last year's time and I think I will!

Is there a special preparation going on? Do you run daily?
I believe running is the easiest and most natural way to stay fit.  I've been running actively since the age of 15. I make it a point to run at least three to four days a week and cover at least 15 to 20 kms in total. On other days, I play sports like tennis. I'm also into adventure sports. To me, fitness is not about getting a bikini body. It's a goal of my life and I work hard towards achieving it.

Do you follow a specific diet? Can you share some tips?
I eat healthy food the usual low-salt, low-fat diet. Nothing special. Everybody knows what's good and bad for him or her. It depends on individual preference. It's very important to stay hydrated. A human body tends to lose more than two liters of water in a full marathon. So keep taking small sips.

Any suggestions for those participating for the first time?
Run at your own pace. It's a marathon, not a sprint. You're not competing with anyone. New runners often get overexcited only to run out of steam. So it's wise to take your time and adjust to your body.

How does Bollywood presence help the cause?
You can just check the increase in public participation over the years. The idea is still new, but is gaining ground especially among youth. Bollywood's presence is a crowd-puller. So, overall, it's quite a positive thing.

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