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Darshananth s/o Jayaraman
  • June 5th, 2008

darshanath-7.jpg

He has been called the ‘monster’ or ‘phenom’ for his punishing pace in races, and I’ve even overheard kids in the stadium saying he has the lungs of a horse. Well despite sharing all that claims with him for this interview, Darshananth is still level-headed and humbled about his running feats.

Not since the 90’s during N.Ganesan distance running reign, who holds the men’s 5000m record holder with a time of 14:57 minutes, clocked in Germany, do we have a runner able to run consistent sub-16min for the 5000m in recent times

When observing Darshananth in local races, you might be mistaken his long striding gait for like a stroll in the park, so relaxed and constant but he’s actually he’s going out pretty fast, evident from his competitors gasping in his trail.

Darshananth admitted that he has a poor finish and speed, thus he made up for it by going hard in the start of the race, hoping to ‘burn-out’ runners who possess a better kick than him

This young lad of 21 years old is aiming for a future spot in the SEA Games, hopefully in his favorite 5000m event as the best chances. Not only Darshananth an accomplished distance running, but he is also an aspiring entrepreneur, recently joining a local venture made for riches

Well do read on, as we posed him questions about running, life and Olympics predictions

Name: Darshananth s/o Jayaraman
Height: 1.82m
Weight: 67kg
Date of Birth: 7.4.1987

School:

  • Woodlands Primary
  • St Joseph’s Institution
  • Innova Junior College

Coach:

  • Mr Max Chua (1998-1999)
  • Mr Irwan (2000-2002)
  • Mr Paul Rainer (2003)
  • Mr Remy Gan (2004-Present)

Personal Best:

  • 800m – 2:03
  • 1500m – 4:08
  • 3000m – 8:58
  • 5000m – 15:40
  • 10km road – 33:16

2008 Races:

  • Wings Cross Country (4.3km) – 14:31. 86, 1st
  • 1st All Comers (5km) – 16:13.69, 1st
  • 2nd All Comers (1500m) – 4:17.31, 4th
  • 3rd All Comers (5km) – 16:17.29, 1st
  • Jakarta International (10km road) – 33:50, 24th
  1. What are you doing currently? Studying, NS, working?

    darshanath-1.jpg
    At Wings Cross Country 2005 leading

    I have just joined this global franchising business. It is a worldwide multi-million business to be millionaires taught by millionaires. I am currently expanding and in three or four years time. I will be moving to Perth to continue building this business. One step at a time and I am really having fun

  2. How did you get started with Track n Field?
  3. I started way back in 1998. I won my school 800m race and the track and field teacher in charge Mr Max Chua took noticed and got me into the track and field team. The following year itself I won a bronze medal in the National Primary school Championships 1500m race. So it was a good start. Abdul Hakeem (national hurdler) and Muhammad Yusof Azhari (national sprinter) were my teammates then.

  4. How do you prepare before a meet/run?

    I will reduce my training about three or four days before the race. I try to get rest as much as possible. I will try to drink a lot of water, but as my coach will testify I eat a lot of junk food and consumed plenty of soft drinks. So that is one area I need to control myself. Other than that the day before the race I just relax. Have a good meal and good rest. I try to relax by reading or watching television

  5. Training wise, what is your routine like? For example; the hours, the type of training, etc. A little insight into your training on a week basis

    darshanath-2.jpg
    During National Schools, champion nonetheless of course

    Despite my busy schedule, I still find time to train four times a week. Normally will be Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. I believe a lot in rest. I know a lot of runners train everyday, sometimes two times a day, but I will never train at such a volume. Intensity is always greater than volume.

    Two long runs & two speedwork sessions. When I did a sub-9min 3000m and sub-16min 5000m, my training intervals were like 5x1000m at 3 minutes pace (60-90s rest), 10x400m at 66-68s (60s rest), 8×200 at 28s-30s (90s rest).

    Currently I am preparing for 10km races and the Army Half Marathon, so I’m doing 50-70 minutes long runs at 3:45s-4:00 per/km pace twice a week and weekly speed work like 10x1000m at 3:10-3:15 per/km pace with 3 minutes rest. Normally the fourth session of the week is a easy run or a pool workout which allows me to work my aerobic and muscular endurance

  6. What motivates you to train?

    My love for running and personal goals

  7. What goes on in your mind when you run. Running tactics, to thoughts during your races

    I will just try to relax and let my mind work the legs. When fatigue sets in, I will remind myself of the effort that i have put in training and this will spur me on during the latter stages of the race

  8. What do you think you are lacking and need to focus on now

    darshanath-3.jpg
    This year’s Wings Cross Country, champion in individual category

    I still give up towards the latter stages of the race, so i need to work on that aspect. Also to build up my upper body strength and leg strength. I have always been lacking a proper sprint finish.

  9. Any injury plaguing you before?

    I am always been very injury prone. Pulled hamstrings, hip injury, ankle sprains. I have been very unlucky with injuries which has affected my progress for sure

  10. Tell us a bit about your training mates and coaches. How have they help and guided you all this while

    I am coached by Remy Gan, who holds the National U-17 5000m record. He is a sprints coach at Singapore Sports School currently. I owe all my achievements to him. I am currently training with Sunny (National Triathlete) and Chua Ee Ghim (Former national schools champion). I used to train with Nathaniel Sim (1mins 54s 800m runner). My teammates have helped me a lot. Even those when I was in Primary and Secondary school

  11. Any advise for young athletes venturing into track/field?

    darshanath-4.jpg
    Trying out the 1500m (far right) Darshananth has a PB of 4:08

    Train at a level which you know you can manage. Always stay positive. Injuries and setbacks are part of training and always speak what you want. Think and dream big. The size of our thinking determines the size of our goals and keep a good communication with your coach. Always be open to feedback from others. Humility is also very important for an athlete

  12. What are your goals in running

    To go as far as I can. That is to qualify for future South East Asian games. For sea games, I will be targeting the 5000m as my best chances but it will be an everest task to qualify. I have first to break our 13 year old 5000m national record of 14:57 minutes held by N.Ganesan to do so

  13. Do you think local distance running has enough support and exposure?

    I think it is moving in the right direction. They are exposing promising athletes to overseas races. I just had a opportunity to race in the Jakarta International 10km in Indonesia where I did alright in a time of 33min 50s. For me I believe results is the only way to determine an athlete’s quality. So no result, no talk

  14. Tell us of your recent Jakarta International 10km race

    darshanath-5.jpg
    Going hard at every races is what Darshananth attempts to do

    Well the Jakarta race, I did 33min 50s and it was fully sponsored trip by SAA. I just missed the Top 20 position and finished 24th. It was an extremely elite race with professional runners from Mexico, Ukraine, Australia, Kenya, Myanmar, Vietnam and Ethiopia. But I am happy with my performance considering I had a knee injury earlier part of the year and was nursing a ITB injury going into the race. I strained it 12 days before the race

  15. Who are your local inspirations? Any Singapore athletes/coaches perhaps, who made you stood up and stand notice and wanting to emulate that feat

    Chamkaur Singh our national 1500m record holder inspires me. He decided against the norm and trained in Australia. Another is G Elangovan who is an immensely talented athlete. I also look up to C.Veeramani, another awesome runner. These guys were able to hold their own against the regionals best. They are the best of the crop of talented distance runners in Singapore

  16. The Beijing Olympics are coming up. Any favorite athletes or events you’re looking forward to

    Maybe the Kenyan and Ethiopian distance runners. I had an opportunity to communicate with them in a recent 10km race in Jakarta and they are one of the most humble people i have ever met. They are not one to crow about their achievements. They’re really great people

  17. Other than Track, what else is your passion/hobby

    Maybe reading motivational books and occasional partying which is like once in a blue moon. As athletes we have to sacrifice much of socializing to rest and recuperate

  18. Who have helped you so far to pursue this dream of yours

    I am really appreciative of Adidas sponsoring me training gear and shoes. I am really thankful for Fabien William, a 1st Sergeant Commando regular and a local marathoner for helping me out with the sponsorship

Thank you Darshananth for this interview and sharing an insight into your life. A remarkable and disciplined athlete which I’m sure have inspired many of us reading this

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Posted by Uncle Sha.
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