Natalie Dau Conquers 1,000km Ultramarathon Across Three Nations

Natalie Dau Conquers 1000km Ultramarathon

New Delhi: At 52, ultramarathoner Natalie Dau has redefined the boundaries of endurance by completing a staggering 1,000-kilometre run through Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore in just 12 days. Despite battling intense heat that melted her shoes and a persistent hip injury from day one, Dau’s determination saw her averaging the distance of two marathons each day, culminating in her extraordinary journey in Singapore on June 5.

Dau’s remarkable achievement has set a new Singapore record for the “Fastest 1,000km Thailand-Singapore Ultramarathon” and she now awaits Guinness World Records certification for the “Fastest Crossing of Peninsular Malaysia on Foot”.

Facing the grueling challenge head-on, Dau shared with BBC her moments of doubt: “Today is the first time in four days I have questioned if I would actually finish this thing. I love the challenge of the sport, love the rawness of it all, but hate these low points. And they come often.”

Yet, her spirit remained unbroken as she raised over $50,000 for GRLS, a global charity empowering women and girls through sports. Speaking to the Straits Times, Dau recounted how temperatures soaring to 35°C caused her shoes to disintegrate and how she grappled with a hip injury that plagued her from the start. Even a urinary tract infection on the third day couldn’t slow her down as she persevered to cover at least 84 kilometers daily.

Dau’s late start in ultra-running in her late 30s only highlights her incredible journey from fitness enthusiast to an ultra-runner—a testament to her physical and mental fortitude required to conquer distances well beyond traditional marathons.

Natalie Dau Conquers 1000km Ultramarathon

Reflecting on the mental challenges of ultra-running, Dau said: “The finish line is so far away, you can’t envisage it. I couldn’t even see the end-of-the-day finish line… You have to get your head mentally in the zone without knowing what that finish line looks like.”

Natalie Dau’s story is not just about athletic prowess but also about the power of human will and resilience in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds.