Crazy 25 hours run on treadmill

FOR many people, running for even 30 minutes on a treadmill is like the longest run of their lives.

So, running 25 hours or more on the gruelling machine must sound like madness to you.

But try telling that to former national middle distance athlete Melinder Kaur. Though she is 34 and a mother of one, it does not hinder her from pursuing record-breaking feats.

And she will attempt to become the first Malaysian woman to run non-stop on treadmill for a minimum 25 hours and also more than 120km within 24 hours.

She is currently preparing herself for the mind-boggling attempt which starts at 10am tomorrow at the Arte By Thomas Chan Hotel in Mont Kiara.

It will not be the first time the retired army lieutenant tries to get her name etched in the Malaysia Book of Records. On April 22, Melinder successfully attempted the fastest 100m forward roll in 52.4 seconds, a feat which she performed at the SSU Kelab Aman. That made it two national records to her name.

In track and field, Melinder is still the proud national record holder of the women’s 3000m steeplechase, a mark which has stood for 22 years since she won the gold at the 2010 Malaysia Games in Melaka with a blistering 10:55.31s.

Melinder is not doing it for fame; her extraordinary feats are for a good cause. The Penang-born is targeting to raise at least RM10,000 for underprivileged children.

“The idea of me performing a forward roll, and now running on a treadmill came because I always wanted to challenge myself mentally and physically,” said Melinder.

“Being an ex-military officer, I have learnt the skills of mental toughness which means I’m able to stick to something regardless of the obstacles to achieve my mission.

“I also want to find my limit by doing something I love the most while raising fund for underprivileged kids. I hope to raise at least RM10,000. It’s not a huge amount, but I hope to make a difference in every child’s life through this contribution.”

The current record of longest non-stop run on a treadmill belongs to Ngeoh Chye Choo, who completed 115.29km in 24 hours. To break it, Melinder has set a target of surpassing the mark by an hour.

However, Melinder admitted she has never run longer than 20km in her life.

So, how on earth is she’s going to pull this off?

“Throughout my life, I have never run a marathon. The longest distance that I have ever run in one go is 20km,” she said.

“Within two months, without any personal trainer or coach. I train myself every single day. My training consists of hill runs, HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), easy one-hour run daily, as well as strength, speed and conditioning training.

“Somehow for this 25-hour run on a treadmill, there is no such thing as being very prepared. It’s more your mental strength instead of fitness and the only thing I have to tell myself is to do or die… stay positive and keep moving.

“I have set my own strategy and will work towards it.”

Long-distance treadmill running requires more than just endurance power as boredom, sleepiness and dehydration are some of the major issues that could set in.

How does Melinder intend to tackle these obstacles? “Running 25 hours non-stop is not mind over matter, but heart over mind. If you can’t silence the mind, then you can’t do it because your mind will tell you that you are not able to do it,” she said.

“Listening to music and praying will help me keep my mind from generating negative thoughts.

“I like drinking my calories during races, so I consume high-calorie drink, fruit or energy bars, rehydration salt and anything which is fast absorbing and easy on the stomach.”

Most importantly, Melinder knows she can count on strong support from her family and friends. “Surely, I won’t be able to do it alone. I’m blessed to have a team backing me,” she said.

“I know I will have to deal with mental and emotional demons like stress, loss of focus but I have a beautiful family and friends who will be there to support me throughout my run and cheering me so that I don’t doze off on the treadmill.

“My biggest cheerleaders will be my husband Charanjit Singh and daughter, Jacquelin Kaur. I also have good friends who will be my support crew and I have divided their tasks accordingly.

She said Kamaldave Singh and Parveen Kaur will be the doctors on standby. The others are manager Jai Nanak Singh and support crew Sanjeev Singh, Manjeet Singh, Semran Kaur and Vanessa Lehl.

“I also want everyone to know that through the support of Arte by Thomas Chan, the attempt was made possible with the sponsorship of space to conduct. I would like to thank them for giving me the opportunity to attempt this record at their premise. I will be attempting this record on the 59th floor where the sky gym is located.”



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