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April 13, 2010

Binoy Sukumaran

Written by Dena Evans
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Binoy grew up in Bhilai, India, before coming to the United States in 1990.  He spent a year in the Bay Area before moving to Tampa, Florida for several years.  When Oracle came calling in 1997, he returned to the Peninsula, where he has remained until now.   Binoy joined Focus-N-Fly this spring, with a goal of training for his first marathon this October.

1.    How did you start running?

In high school and middle school I did some sprints, but nothing serious. I just enjoyed running, did some races, etc.  In college, I played soccer and other sports, but did not do a whole lot with running.   After I came here (to the US), I would run now and then, but about five years ago, I saw the Bay to Breakers and thought it looked interesting.  I ran it and it felt hard, but after that, I started running more regularly, doing 5ks and 10ks.  Now I do Bay to Breakers every year religiously (Binoy was a part of Focus-N-Fly’s third place team at the 2009 race).

I find running really good for stress relief, but I had never examined my running in a technical way.  I decided to run a marathon, and join a running club to give myself some structure and improve my time.

2.    Who is your running role model?

That’s a good question.  Anyone who qualifies for and finishes the Boston Marathon is my role model.  That is my goal in a few years.

3.    What has been your most memorable running / racing experience?

Probably when I ran my first 13 miler.  I was kind of beat up at the end, but felt very good about it.  That is when I thought the marathon is not too far away.  When I run the Bay to Breakers, the Hayes Street hill is always memorable.  This year, I felt much better running the hill than ever before.

4.    What have you enjoyed about working with Focus-N-Fly?

I like the structure of the schedule.  I know exactly what I am going to do.  I like the group a lot too, although initially, I was a little intimidated, wondering how I could fit in.  Everyone was very friendly though.   The whole program strikes me as very interesting and I have gotten a lot of confidence from it.  I started late April, early May, and I can really tell the difference already.  I really enjoy the whole program.

5.    What is one part of your racing routine you can’t do without (sleep, pre race meal, tie shoes certain way, other ritual)?

Getting safety pins ready for my bib number. Every night before the race, I carefully select the four safety pins I am going to use.   I also always eat pasta from Capellini’s.  In the morning, just a bagel.

6.    What is your favorite place to go for a run?

Sawyer Camp Trail. I try to go there at least once a week.

7.    In the next year, what goals do you hope to accomplish?

The first thing is the Silicon Valley Marathon. That is my first marathon, so I just want to finish with a reasonable time.   From then, I want to do a couple marathons and half marathons.  I’m setting the bar low, but hope to run Boston in a few years.  This year I ran around 1:02 for Bay to Breakers, which is a big improvement from what I had been doing before.  Next year, I hope to break 1 hour.

Last modified on October 10, 2010
Dena Evans

Dena Evans

Dena Evans joined runcoach in July, 2008 and has a wide range of experience working with athletes of all stripes- from youth to veteran division competitors, novice to international caliber athletes.

From 1999-2005, she served on the Stanford Track & Field/ Cross Country staff. Dena earned NCAA Women’s Cross Country Coach of the Year honors in 2003 as Stanford won the NCAA Division I Championship. She was named Pac-10 Cross Country Coach of the Year in 2003-04, and West Regional Coach of the Year in 2004.

From 2006-08, she worked with the Bay Area Women’s Sports Initiative, helping to expand the after school fitness programs for elementary school aged girls to Mountain View, East Menlo Park, and Redwood City. She has also served both the Stanford Center on Ethics and the Stanford Center on the Legal Profession as a program coordinator.

Dena graduated from Stanford in 1996.

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