Celebrated actor, supermodel and fitness promoter, Milind Soman became the only athlete to run barefoot at the 2017 Ultraman-Florida and while the fitness world celebrated the 52 year old Soman’s feat, this 20-year-old Pune based triathlete became the youngest Ultraman-Australia breaking Milind’s record timing.
Shubham Kajale ran one of the toughest endurance races in the world and completed it in a record time of 31 hours 32 minutes and 07 seconds.
Pune365 caught up with Kajale soon after this return and had him share his experiences at this enduring event…
Practicing for these races required much more stamina and patience than imagined.. “I used to swim at tilak tank in Pune under the guidance of my coach Kalpana Agashe and this was alongwith my regular exercise regime under my physiotherapist.
I practiced cycling and running on my own. Overall, I have been training for 8-12 hours a day from the time I first thought of attempting the ironman competition about four years ago”
Ultraman is a three-day multi-sport event which requires each participant to complete 10 kms of swimming, 421 kms of cycling and 85 kms of running in 36-hour (12 hours/day) that usually starts from 5:30-6:00 am and ends by 6:00 pm. To compete for ultraman, one must successfully complete the ironman race 18 months prior and is then invited to attempt the ultraman. To participate in both races, one must be 18-years of age.
Shubham was apparently the youngest ironman too at the age of 18 who completed 4 kms of swimming, 180 kms of cycling and 42 kms of running in 14 hours and 17 minutes.
“When I came into triathlon four years ago, I didn’t have any dream of being an Ultraman but only aimed at being an Ironman. I was passionate about the distance and endurance and also the challenges that follow. Hence, I started training for it.
“Earlier, I couldn’t even cycle for 100 kms. Eventually, it was a big task for me to increase my capacity in all three sports. Even when I became the youngest Ironman 2 years ago, I didn’t think of attempting the Ultraman.
It was only when I started following the updates and watched videos and images online, I was fascinated by it and hence applied to run.”
Passionate about sports from his childhood, Shubham has been hands-on on several sports including rifle shooting, horse riding and was also the national pentathlon champion when he was in class 11.
A BCom student in city-based SP College, Shubham finished 36th in the Ultraman-Australia among the 48 athletes that appeared from across the world and the 44 that managed to finish the race within 36 hours.
First day, swim for 10 kms and ride for 140kms in 12 hours.
Second day, ride for 280 Kms in 12 hours.
Third day run for 85 kms in 12 hours.
There are only 12 Indians who have completed Ultraman race and around 800 in the world.
“I have also trained under Milind Soman when he was in Pune and was also guided by Prithvi Raj Patil who is Ultraman-Florida. He guided me on every facet including food, to the kind of nutrition, techniques, before and after race preparation etc.
Yet, running on that terrain was really tough for me.
Shubham was accompanied by his mother who was also his crew member during the race. Speaking about his family, he says;
“My family didn’t have any idea until I told them that I had applied for ultraman-Australia and was invited by them.
After I started training, they were very supportive and believed that if I have taken this challenge, I will complete it by myself.”
Shubham has started training kids and is now open to train whoever aspires to run the triathlon since the event is new to India and there are not many training centres for the same.
Shubham confesses that he hasn’t gone on a vacation or recovery mode and has been practicing everyday even today.
#Pune365 wishes Shubham all success ahead !
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