3 months ago
2019 TRAIL WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS, 08TH JUNE, PORTUGAL
Nestled in the South West Khasi Hills and Khasi Jainta region of Meghalya in the district of Mawkyrwat is home of an emerging group of runners who make running seem as simple as breathing. Farming and raising cattle is their life style, and then they do something that comes naturally to them….RUN…..and they run long, strong and are destined to run far.
From this little community of ‘farming runners’ surfaced the 40-year-old father to a daughter and three sons, who discovered the joy of running a race when he stood on the podium at the Cherrapunjee Marathon in 2015. “For someone who never got a chance to go to school and participate in such activities, this was the moment of a lifetime”, he says. Later that year he took his place on the victory stand at the Bengaluru Marathon finishing third in his age category with a time of 2 hours 49 minutes. Since then Tlanding Wahlang has been reducing his time spent on a marathon course finishing the 2019 IDBI Federal Life Insurance New Delhi Marathon in 2 hours 35 minutes.
When RUNmeghalaya took the Mawkyrwat Ultra 2017 to his village Shngimawlein, Tlanding knew he had to do it. He trained for and ran through his village on that 72 km course in 5 hour 43 minutes and then unassumingly waited at the finish line for the next 45 minutes for his fellow villager, Swonding Mawlong to arrive in next. In 2018 when Tlanding landed in Manali, for the The Hell Race 60 km Solang Skyultra having an elevation gain of 3575 meters, little did he know that finishing in a time of 7 hours 11 minutes would earn him a cotation of 650+ on the ITRA Performance Index, which eventually found him a place on the Indian Team for the 2019 Trail World Championships, Portugal.
Tlanding trains about 120 – 150 Km, and much of his cross training involves working in his paddy field. “I admire and respect every runner who challenges himself to higher heights” say Tlanding, when asked who was his running idol. His diet comprises of plenty of rice, potatoes and sweet potatoes. Red rice water to hydrate and potatoes to eat takes him a long way during an ultra marathon.