Man Singh

A Runner's Journey from Pithoragarh to Asian Marathon Gold

29 May, 24 | 8:03 AM7 min read


Meet Man Singh, a gold medalist in the Asian Marathon Championships 2024, who completed his run in 2:14:19 defeating the chinese runner up athlete Huang Yongzheng. Mr Singh comes from a small village in Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand. His story is not just about running fast; it's about never giving up.

Growing up in the hills of Pithoragarh, Man Singh learned to walk and run long distances every day. His Pahadi origin turned out to be a blessing for his running career. As he puts it, being a 'Pahadi' naturally predisposed him to endurance.

With a Bachelor of Arts he first thought about getting a government job. His participation in school games sparked a keen interest in running, which was further edged out during his Army Bharti preparations. Singh recalls that he topped among all in the army Bharti Run. After getting into the Indian Army, Man Singh started taking running seriously. His coaches helped him train well, and his 'junoon' kept him going.

Winning a gold medal for India at the South Asian Games in Guwahati in 2016 was a big milestone for Man Singh, which was his first international gold. It made him really happy and pushed him to do even better. However, the journey wasn't without its setbacks. The COVID-19 pandemic, like for many athletes, was a significant hurdle. It disrupted his training regime and impacted his performance. Yet, Singh's resilience shone through as he bounced back, surpassing his previous records in subsequent races.

Man Singh is optimistic about the future of athletics in India. He believes that Indian youngsters are edging closer to world records and that it's only a matter of time before they break them. His success story has also started to resonate back in his village, where more youngsters are now showing interest in sports as a viable career path.

Singh acknowledges the challenges that come with being a runner, especially for those from lower-middle-class backgrounds. His advice to them is heartfelt and practical: start small, with limited resources, and let hard work pave the way forward. Singh's own journey is proof that with determination and effort, one can overcome financial and infrastructural constraints.

His current training regime is a rigorous one, which is 150-170 kilometers of running per week, balanced with rest and proper nutrition. He underlines the importance of discipline in achieving one's dreams.

What makes Man Singh special? He answers that he has grabbed every opportunity that came in his way! And never left anything on toss.

Man Singh's story shows us that no matter where you come from, you can achieve big things if you work hard and never give up. His journey from the hills of Pithoragarh to winning gold is an inspiration for anyone who dreams of doing something big.