Thinley Namgay

For Nim Gyaltshen, 68, from Paro, it was his maiden competition at the recent New York City marathon, which has been a popular race since 1970.

Nim was one of the contenders among 51,295 runners from across the world in the 42.195km marathon.

Two other Bhutanese residing in New York, Rinchen Pelden, 35, and Yeshey Choden, 29, also participated in the race.

Rinchen Pelden, from Haa, has been a regular Bhutanese runner in most of the running competitions in the USA since 2014.

Getting to the start point of the race was challenging for Nim. Owing to the more participants heading to the starting point, the traffic was closed completely.

However, the race, he said, was fun and memorable.  Bhutanese residing in New York also came to support Bhutanese runners.

Nim said: “I was advised to run the first half easy. However, seeing the New York crowd cheering all the way, I forgot the advice and finished the first half in under 2hrs.”

The second half was painful for Nim with muscle cramps, but he completed the race.

All threeBhutanese runners achieved their personal best. Nim Gyaltshen finished in 4hrs 19mins. He stood 20,962nd out of the 51,295 runners.

Rinchen Pelden completed the race in 3hrs 35mins and landed 6,830th place. Yeshey Choden touched the finish line in 4hrs and 45mins and was placed in the 29,935th position.

Rinchen said: “Running is challenging physically and mentally, but I enjoy every single mile that I can cover.”