About Sri Chinmoy - Team Founder
"I feel that the world needs dynamism. The outer world needs dynamism and the inner world needs peace. As seekers, we have to pray and meditate in order to have peace. Again, if we can be dynamic, then we will be able to accomplish much in our outer life. To be dynamic we need physical fitness at every moment, and running helps us considerably to keep physically fit."
- Sri Chinmoy
Sri Chinmoy founded the Marathon Team in 1977, and his vision, encouragement and intuition have been the guiding force behind its growth into the world's largest organizer of ultradistance races.
His innate understanding of the limitless potential that lies within each one of us led him to conceive of events that to others seemed beyond the bounds of possibility - the prime example being the 3100 Mile Self-Transcendence Race; started in 1997 and still the world's longest race.
Sri Chinmoy's running career
In his own right, Sri Chinmoy was a formidable athlete, and the dedication with which he trained inspired his students to expand their own capacities in participating in and organizing events.
A champion athlete in the spiritual community where he grew up, Sri Chinmoy participated in many of the Marathon Team's Races, finishing 22 marathons and five ultras, as well as participating in The World Masters Games in 1983 and the World Veterans Games in Japan in 1993 (see video)
In 1985, Sri Chinmoy began weightlifting, and achieved many unusual and eye-catching lifts which challenged everyone's perceptions of possiblility.
His final months on earth saw no halt to his inspirational dedication - as recently as August 2007, less than two months before his passing on October 11, Sri Chinmoy succeeded in lifting overhead 800lbs using only his right arm. His weightlifting exploits have been captured in the film Challenging Impossibility.
The inner life
"There are countless people on earth who do not believe in the inner strength or inner life. They feel that the outer life is everything. I do not agree with them," said Sri Chinmoy about his weightlifting. "There is an inner life; there is spirit, and my ability to lift heavy weights proves that it can work in matter as well. I am doing these lifts with the physical body, but the power is coming from an inner source, from my prayer and meditation."
Sri Chinmoy practiced sports not only for the joy of it, and to keep the body fit, but also because he saw sports as a natural vehicle for expressing his philosophy of self-transcendence. Inspired by his example, several of his students have attempted to stretch their own personal limits - setting new world records in various fields, running multi-day races, swimming the English channel and climbing some of the world's highest mountains.
- A tabular listing of Sri Chinmoy's athletic achievements
- Highlights from Sri Chinmoy's sprinting career, including competing in World Masters Games
- An overview of Sri Chinmoy's distance running
- Articles on Sri Chinmoy's weightlifting from 1985 to 2007
- Sri Chinmoy has had many talks and answers on running over the years. Here is a section of his writings:
On other sites:
- Sri Chinmoy: Official Home Page - includes tributes from famous sports people such as Carl Lewis, Tatyana Lebedeva and Tegla Laroupe
- The Outer Running And The Inner Running (link is external) - a book of talks, questions and answers on running by Sri Chinmoy
- Videos of Sri Chinmoy's athletic endeavours at Sri Chinmoy TV