Siva Balu Chicago, IL - PATH projects KREW

Siva Balu at Badwater

I live in the Chicago area. I have been running for almost 9 years now out of which ultra-running for around 5 years. I am part of several local and national running groups. I enjoy supporting charities through my races including Special Olympics, Sarah's Inn for domestic violence support and Challenge Athletes Foundation.

Running accomplishment(s) you are proud of

(1) Badwater 135: It was an honor to be invited to run the "World's Toughest Footr ace" Badwater 135 miler in Death Valley. The race starts at the lowest point in the northern hemisphere at 282 feet below sea level at Badwater Basin and goes up to Mt. Whitney portal over 8,500 feet above sea level through three mountain races. There are only 800+ people on the planet who have completed this event. I was also injured 7 weeks before this race at Keys 100 and had to rehab before running this. Running through the entire Death Valley national park in 125 F heat and taking it all in was a life changing experience.

(2) Tuscobia 160: This tough and long winter ultra marathon in northwest Wisconsin during the last weekend of December was yet another unique and challenging experience. There was snow, winter rain, ice and all this while pulling a sled with all your supplies as there was no outside support or aid stations. I was all by myself for most of the race which lasted for 3 days and 3 nights (67 hours) with no sleep or extended break. This race really tested the mental strength of not giving up.

Any races or adventures on your horizon and / or bucket list?

Planning to run a 100 miles on a Treadmill in December (Dreadmill 100-miler). I hardly run on treadmills, not even my training runs. This would be a different type of challenge.

Your favorite PATH projects gear?

I run almost all my races and long runs in PATH projects gear. I love all PATH projects gear. SYKES PX 7" and GRAVES PX 7" are my go to shorts. CASCADE and CIRCLE RANGE are my fav t-shirts.

siva in path projects gear

What do you enjoy about running? 

Running helps me clear my head. I have a very high octane job that involves long hours and constant decision making. Running has helped me mentally when I had some serious life challenges thrown at me. It has also helped me build a lot of good friends. Running community is the best.

Advice for runners looking to improve?

Strength training. Do something that is not running to strengthen the other muscles of your body.

Social channels you are most active on?

Instagram Facebook Strava

Anything else you’d like to share?

Running is a state of mind. No matter what your purpose is, how long you run, how far you go, keep a positive mindset. A positive state of mind will overcome any physical challenge.

Learn about all other KREW members HERE.