362 Discover Mindfulness In Ultramarathon Running; Deepak Shukla

October 1, 2018

Deepak Shukla is a marathon runner, Muay Thai fighter, SEO agency owner and nominee for Young Entrepreneur of the year. He has run in over 25 marathons and was also a 3X Ironman. When he's not working, you'll find Deepak getting tattoos, hanging out with his cat Jenny or eating Calzone!

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Most Influential Person

Effect on Emotions

  • I'm more aware of them [my emotions], almost like I can see them before they're coming or I can sense the triggers and become mindful of what's happening and what my trigger points are. This has allowed me to manage my negative emotions and process them a lot more effectively than I used to. It's been absolutely huge for me.

Thoughts on Breathing

  • Breathing helps calm me. It really helps calm me. It's that resetting and emotional trigger. I got a lot of practice doing [this breathing with] some of these ultras [I've done].
  • You really have to reset your breathing when you look down and you see you've got a really technical route to run and it's 1:00 AM in the morning, the wind's blowing and you're scared as well.
  • Not only are you breathing hard because you're tired because you're 14 hours into a run. You're also scared because it just looks really dangerous and there's that trigger that is activated through [breathing].
  • Not only does it allow me to regulate my body functions, if you will, my cardiovascular system. It also allows me to center myself and to regain my composure.

Suggested Resources

Bullying Story

  • I was bullied. I was 11 years old. In the UK education system, you go into secondary school at age 11. So at that time, it's kind of a whole new playground. The area in which we grew up is a place called is a place called West Drayton, which is a suburb in west of London. It's a white working class community and I was one of very few British Indian kids that were in that school.
  • This school had a registration system had to be overhauled because the amount of bullying that existed. With any kind of registration you would typically be put with people in your same class or at your same level. For example, you wouldn't put a commanding officer and a new recruit in the same class. My school was different in that they'd put the 11 year olds with the 16 year olds all the way through the registration.
  • And in that registration, there were four brothers, ages 11, 12, 14 and 16. And really it just happened that, they took a liking to me. But, you know, it just evolved into really horrible kind of tense registration experiences because I was an easy target. I was there kind of by myself. They would do the play fighting, but really actually they punched you quite hard and then if you try and fight back a little bit, then one of the other brothers would kind of push you.
  • I eventually moved school. I moved off after two and a half years. So by the time I was 13 and a half or 14, I think I always recall that as I just told you, I would once or twice try to kind of fight back if you will. And I did again when I was about 13 and a half and one of the brothers kind of just struck me in the face. I remember falling over. It was at lunchtime and I was walking away and trying to just do my best to hold back from, from crying.
  • I also bullied as well in parallel. It was weird. I saw other people, when I look back on it in hindsight.
  • It's difficult for me to talk about because I'm kind of ashamed of it, but I mean it's the reality of what happened.
  • There was another guy, a kid, a Hungarian migrant, I think. Solveeka was his first name, I think. And, you know, he was from a migrant family just as I was, but he was the first generation migrant. I was in second generation, of course I'm born and raised here in London.
  • I just always remember that kind of a taunting him and making references to silly comments about, you know, the kid's mom and people would laugh and that would make me feel better. And then I just remember being pulled out of class once and being told that, Solveeka came to us crying.
  • That was a huge learning experience for me for all of that to be happening at the same time. It was really quite odd. So, emotionally, things were very messy at that time.
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