Hi Reddit,

Pat Farmer here with the Spirit of India team about to cross the border into Goa. I launched my run on January 26 and now we are on day 14 with about 3600km (2236 miles) to go. I started in the southern-most point of India in Kanyakumari and our finish line is in Srinigar, Kashmir up to the base of the Himalayas. We expect to reach there by the end of March.

I served eight years as a federal minister, with 3 years as Parliamentary Secretary for Education, Science and Training in Australia. I have completed humanitarian runs across the world which includes from the North Pole to the South Pole where I ran through 14 countries and raised $100m for the International Red Cross.

You can read more about me here: http://patfarmer.com/about

I am currently running across India to raise money for the Nanhi Kali foundation to support girls’ education, to inspire people and to foster friendship between two great democracies – Australia and India.

At the moment I am joined by my crew manager Katie Walsh and to help me answer questions is journalist/photographer Kevin Nguyen, who has accompanied me for this journey. It’s about 5.30am in India and I will literally be running as I answer your questions.

You can follow our journey on our blog, our Instagram, our Facebook, and our Twitter. You can also donate to our cause by following this link.

Kevin: If there is a delay in response it’s likely because our internet has dropped out as we enter a dead zone. We’ll be here for the next two hours or so from 7.15pm EST. Look forward to all your great questions!

Proof: http://imgur.com/ZvUdj1V and here.

Comments: 94 • Responses: 16  • Date: 

showmm31 karma

What are your favourite conditions to run in? What are your least?

By the way, the Super Bowl is on right now, so you might get a better response if you try again another day.

Edit: Thanks for answering my question. I threw a tenner to your cause.

patfarmerathlete38 karma

My least favorite condition is freezing cold and in particular the wind, I believe that wind is the greatest force on this earth. It's the most difficult force to deal with, you can't see it but it pushes you around like a marble on the playground. Ideally, anything else.

paulaorangepeel11 karma

What is your favourite memory/funniest story from running around the world?

patfarmerathlete22 karma

I would have to say being snuck into Canadian Parliament during the pole-to-pole run. I was invited by someone to the opening of parliament and I snuck in there in my runner shorts and sweaty t-shirt. The parliamentarian security ended up booting me out, but then straight afterwards some of the ministers came out to speak with me and have their photos taken with me.

Dcowboysct11 karma

With all the miles you have ran in your life has your body had any permanent Injuries?

patfarmerathlete17 karma

Pat: No.

Katie: The biggest problems he had was that he a stress fracture during the Trans-American Foot Race. Other than that, he's body is clearly built for endurance otherwise he wouldn't have lasted 30 years. The biggest ailments he's had has been obvious things like blisters, which you need to deal with.

patfarmerathlete9 karma

Kevin: Hey guys, we'd be watching the Superbowl too if we had a working television. We're about to enter am internet dead zone soon so we might come back at a later day. Thanks so much for your questions and we'll talk soon. If you're able to, any support for our cause would be greatly appreciated.

SpaceManatee217 karma

That's amazing that you've raised that much. Have you had any memorable experiences while running?

patfarmerathlete13 karma

Pat: Thank you. My most memorable experience would have to be when I came face to face with a black bear in Canada while I was doing my pole-to-pole run.

Katie: He was running along James Bay Road and the support vehicle hadn't caught up to him yet and a black bear came onto the road, looked at him and by the time the vehicle caught up it was gone.

cmackenon7 karma

What kind of running shoe do you use?

I can imagine you must have to change shoes quite regularly.

patfarmerathlete11 karma

I wear Brooks Running shoes, I've found them to be the best. I've tried every make available on Earth - all the main ones, anyway. I change them about every 1000km.

Max441506 karma

Queen or David Bowie?

patfarmerathlete11 karma

Kevin: Can we just answer with "Under Pressure"?

AJ_Rimmer_SSC6 karma

How far do you run per day? And how long does it typically take you?

patfarmerathlete16 karma

Kevin: I can answer this one. Pat runs at a steady 10km/h and we dedicated about 12 hours a day to running. He generally aims for about 80km a day, but it will vary if we have commitments at schools, press conferences or function along the way. It's also very important he have regular breaks in the between and so a typical run could last the whole 12 hour block. It's a marathon, not a race, and so while he can go faster he needs to pace himself so he can get up the next morning and do it again.

awesom5676 karma

What made you want to help Redcross out? What was the key reason?

patfarmerathlete8 karma

There was a need in the world for clean sanitary and clean water projects and I believe that Red Cross had a good reputation of delivering in these fields.

Bagofmixedvegetables6 karma

What do you eat on days that you are planning on running long distances?

patfarmerathlete11 karma

On the road, whatever we can get.

Over here in India fresh fruit is easily accessible, they got plenty nutrients. I try to get plenty of carbohydrates because it's my main fuel source. I always try and finish with lots of good fats at the end of the run if I've been unable to consume them during the day - I crave a milkshake whenever I finish.

I also have lots of chicken and vegetable soups, because I find it difficult to eat solids when I'm doing long distances. I also try and avoid spices.

gmrepublican5 karma

Best marathon time?

patfarmerathlete21 karma

For a standard marathon which is 42km, it was 2 hours and 20 minutes, which I did in Japan. For an 80km marathon, I did it in 5 hours and 30 minutes.

pascal4 karma

I'm stuck at around 2 miles for running (for the past like 3 weeks), any tips to get me farther/motivate me more??

patfarmerathlete16 karma

Pat: Try something else like doing some work on a bike, or some gym work that involves skipping it. Then come back to running in a couple of weeks time. The process behind it the is not only to stay fit and healthy but to shake things up a bit.

It's easy to get into a rhythm and you need to overcome the mental barriers towards running.

Katie: As a personal trainer, from a more formal point of view what happens is you reach a plateau and you have an increase in workload that stimulates progressive - we call it progressive overload. When you plateau you're just maintaining and so you need to increase the workload somehow - you can do this by increasing distance, length, different exercises or have less rest.

You need to keep increasing the workload as to improve rather than maintain.

Imranalamshaikh4 karma

Good morning pat, Keep up the good work mate, Is the secret vegemite? (lol)

patfarmerathlete12 karma

My secret is actually about focusing on the first step and the last step. It's also about hydration and nutrition, even when I don't want to. I treat myself like a robot because it's necessary. On all my runs I also choose a worthwhile cause.

On this run it's about raising funds for girls' education in India.

_Zev3 karma

How do you keep your physical fitness? I can barely run a few kilometers without panting like a dog..

patfarmerathlete3 karma

Hey /u/_Zev, we answered a similiar question here.

Statccato3 karma

How many miles have you run in your lifetime? What was the most memorable run you had?

patfarmerathlete7 karma

Really can't answer that.

Kevin: Saying a lot would be an understatement. It's really impossible to tell. Pole-to-pole was almost 21,000km. India is 4600km. Sydney to Melbourne is over 800km. Plus, Pat's training before a run lasts up to five hours a day.

Katie: With all the major runs he's done, plus all the smaller ones between that, it's impossible to say.

daidougei3 karma

Who was your hero when you were young?

patfarmerathlete9 karma

My dad.