Run Long, Run Fast

Two times Kepler Challenge winner Vajin Armstrong , a member of the Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team and the person whose running shoes you’ll probably only glimpse receding way off into the distance, was guest enchanter at a recent evening about running, meditation and nutrition in Auckland’s CBD this month.  Eighty people filled the marathon team’s HQ and listened to an inspirational talk on fitness breakthroughs, the role of meditation in tapping into the positive energies of the mind, and the importance of nutrition in optimizing our athletic potential.

A long time vegetarian, Vajin’s last topic inspired a flurry of questions and unearthed a rich lode of remarkable facts about the body’s mechanisms when under the stress of a 100 mile mountain race or a six hour dash through Fiordland National Park.  Remarkably, many top trail runners globally are on the same dietary regime and have shared their information on the superfoods, dietary secrets and hi-octane sports nutrition in a number of recent publications about ultra races.

Vajin also spoke of the longest certified race in the world, the Sri Chinmoy inspired 3100 mile epic that is held in New York’s high-humidity sweltering summer every year – athletes cover over 90kms a day for some fifty four days consecutively! Gasps of incredulity – but Vajin very nicely elaborated on the infinite potential of the human body when harnessed to the power of the mind and the spiritual forces accessed through meditation, quoting Sri Chinmoy’s remark that “we are all truly unlimited if we only dare to try and have faith.”

A remarkable highlight of the evening was a short film entitled “Challenging Impossibility”. An award winning documentary from the Cannes Film Festival, the 30 minute film charted the astonishing weight lifting career of spiritual master Sri Chinmoy.  Olympic great Carl Lewis and legendary body-builders including 5 x Mr Universe Bill Pearl, Frank Zane and Hugo Girard all spoke of their friendship with Sri Chinmoy and the mind-body connection in reaching our highest potential.

Next up for Vajin – defending his Keplar Challenge title from the 400 mountain runners who will contest the 25th running of the 60km race on December 1st, 2012.

If you haven’t visited this beautiful part of New Zealand, toss your gear into a pack and head south – you can walk it in two glorious days!