I thought I was done with the Marathon post, but I decided to put together some learning and some stuff that I need to change before I attempt another marathon.
- Coach Kumar was a blessing. A positive person and an expert in Marathons,
he was following up on us like crazy and he was so accessible. On days that I couldn't practice, especially
during the Christmas time, I was a little apprehensive to face him.
The coach with the girls during one of our practice runs
- Practicing and running with friends who had a common goal helped. We were very clear on the race day that we will run our own race. We did not let each other pressurize ourselves, or bog one another down.
- I ran the entire 10km. No mean feat this. happy for myself.
- We did a lot of reading and kept ourselves informed about the techniques for running, postures, mudra for aiding meditation and concentration, the diet, strength training exercises, warm up and warm down activities. We practiced some of them during our trial runs like the postures and the Gyan mudra. Sent each other what we read and since all of us were doing it was four fold and before running we would have scored full marks in theory.
- We all reached an hour in advance, had time for work-outs and loved the frenzy of the other runners. I had laid out my running clothes, attached the bib, practiced in the new shoe that I was to run, hydrated myself enough the previous two days, carb-loaded myself and was all set mentally and physically.
- The magic of cheering and appreciation unfolded in front of my eyes – there were people cheering the runners all though the way. I waved to them and loudly thanked them for standing there and cheering us. I met an old couple well past 85 cheering for the runners, a Pomeranian owner was holding his dogs palm and waving to us. I asked for the name, intending to hear the dog’s name, and he said, my name is Chakravarthy, you can call me Uncle. ( all this while I was running ).
- While on the note of cheering, there were a group of special children who were playing music just near Madhya Kailash. I crossed the running crowd towards them to thank them and they could not even acknowledge or smile at me. That made me tear up.
- The event was organised well with the route maps and milestones completed for all the marathoners – the ones running 10k, HM and FM. So whenever I saw the hoarding for completion of every kilometer, I cheered myself. At the 7th km, I had missed the hoarding, but I heard a runner say that we had just crossed 7th km. I started clapping as I was running, and the runners around me looked very surprised. I told them I am cheering myself and the set of people around me clapped and said, we would also cheer you. That instant camaraderie of marathoners – priceless
- A septuagenarian was running in front of me, with this tag “ Marathoners last longer”
- It was always difficult for me to find myself in a crowd. This run was different. I could complete a Divine mercy Rosary between the 2nd and 3rd km and was mighty thrilled to find inner peace, while being in a huge crowd and yet focus on my prayer.
- A friend who kept following up on my practice runs, once wasn't happy that I missed it and messaged me saying “ You will be assigned a water station on the marathon day”. Every time I crossed a water station, I was reminded of the comment and I did laugh out loud ( not that I needed a water station to get reminded of this friend, but yet)
- I was so damn anxious, that in spite of going to bed by 10pm, I must have fallen asleep only after 12 in the night. I can get overly excited about little things and Marathon was no exception. I should learn to sleep well the previous night of the marathon.
- The marathon was on the second day of my periods and that slowed me down quite a bit. It definitely was a mental block, but I am glad I overcame it. There was nothing I could have done about it. Every muscle, every joint in my body ached, but it could not bring down my post run kick J. That reminds me, I felt giddy after the run.
- I didn't want to eat anything heavy before the run, so I drank water and ate a couple of bananas. Since we started pretty early 5.30 am in the morning, by the time I finished the run, I was famished, could have also been the reason for my giddiness.
- The timing 1 hour 45 mins and 2 secs needs to improve. Need to practice more.
- I will not definitely repeat this mistake. Mea culpa, Mea culpa, Mea Maxima culpa. Call
girls’ Woman's fetish. The normal walking shoes that I am comfortable in is something that I am using for more than a year. I have another pair shoes which fits me snugly, A 7 and a half size from US and I have used it during my long flights. Most importantly it was black and matches my walking pants that I planned to wear on the Marathon day. The costume had to sync up right – Woman’s fetish? I practiced my walk in it before the marathon, not the entire 10km though and I did not run in it. So when I started the run on the D-day, all was well till the 4th and the 5th km. But after that the shoes started pinching my toes and it started getting painful. Every step that i took my 3 little toes on both the legs started hurting incrementally. But remember what I told myself? Unless you faint…. I kept at the run. The result? Shoes pinched me so hard, that 2 of my toenails have fallen off and it still hurts. Ahem. I can be awfully stupid too. Never again will I ditch my walking shoes for cosmetic reasons. By the way, the pain couldn't wipe my smile off at any point in time during the run.